"ALTHOUGH MY DUTIES AS lieutenant governor usually keep me at the state capitol, my heart is always in Fresno. My family and friends live in Fresno; it is my home."
In his introduction to Fresno: Heartbeat of the Valley , California Lieutenant Governor Cruz M. Bustamante describes the many attractive qualities of his home city. "Fresno is unique in that it has a metropolitan glare, while still maintaining a small-town familiarity. Time and again, I hear stories about people who grew up in Fresno, left to establish themselves professionally, and later returned to settle down." No longer is Fresno a stop on the way to a destination; it is the destination itself. Away from the gridlock and the madding crowds of Los Angeles and San Francisco, what was once a small farming community has become a vital city in its own right.
Aided by hundreds of photographs culled from the area's finest photographers, Bustamante takes readers on a tour through the heart of the San Joaquin Valley. The breadbasket of the world, Fresno has agricultural roots that can be found on every street corner and in every store. Yet, as native son Bustamante points out, "Fresno has more to offer than just agriculture." The city is alive with arts, education, and commerce.