The hard work by fire crews prevented the Cranston Fire devastation from entering the town of Idyllwild, and now the town is ready to celebrate at the “Jazz in the Pines” festival.
Victor Perez made his way up the mountain early Thursday morning from Escondido via Hemet.
“What a beautiful place,” Perez said. “It’s almost no delays right now, I was up here in two seconds.”
The California Department of Transportation is advising visitors of delays on Route 74 the agency will continue car escorts while repairs of the guardrail and and street signs continue.
The Chief Operating Officer of Idyllwild Arts, John Newman, hopes the traffic delays won’t discourage tourists from visiting the festival.
Newman said, “We’ve had an uptick in ticket sales since the evacuation was released, so we think that people are to come up and celebrate with us.”
Caltrans recommends visitors from the Coachella Valley to take Route 243 from Banning as that route will be completely open.
An hour and a half later and about 6,000 feet above sea, visitors will find a town full of locals ready to welcome visitors.
One of those locals is Paul White, he is the owner of Idyllwild Bake Shop and Brew.
White said, “Jazz in the Pines always brings a lot of people, we are open here and we have a food booth at the festival.”
He hopes the turnout from the festival will help him and his business bounce back from a five day closure during the heat of the fire.
White said, “It will be tougher for folks to get up here with issues on the roads, but being the 25 anniversary of the festival, I think we’re going to have a great showing.
The Jazz in the Pines festival goes from August 10 to the 12.