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Tuesday Travel Ticker: Will a Yosemite park gem be reclaimed?

August 07, 2012|By Chris Erskine | Los Angeles Times staff writer

San Franciscans will vote in November on whether they want a plan for draining the 117-billion-gallon Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in Yosemite National Park, exposing for the first time in 80 years a glacially carved, granite-ringed valley of towering waterfalls. The measure could eventually undo a century-old federal decision that created the only reservoir in a national park and slaked the thirst of a city almost 200 miles away . . . . In an attempt to turn around declines in population, Niagara Falls says it will cover two years' worth of student loan payments for recent university graduates who agree to live in a targeted neighborhood. The Associated Press says the tuition program will start small, with about 20 people in the first round . . . . It’s rodeo season in south Orange County.  San Juan Capistrano’s Rodeo Week takes place Aug. 18-24, followed by the Rancho Mission Viejo Rodeo Aug. 25-26. For details, go to www.sanjuanchamber.com . . . . For car lovers, the Channel Islands Harbor hosts the Ventura Vintage Rods Harbor Run 22 Sept. 9.  The free event includes over 250 pre-1975 classic cars on display. Another Oxnard event in September: the 16th Annual Historic Autumn Home Tours Sept. 23. For info on either event, go to www.visitoxnard.com . . . .  It may occur a month too early, but the Monterey Bay Oktoberfest promises “foamy fun and frivolity” Sept. 15-16. Tickets: www.oktoberfestmontereybay.com or ( 831) 626-3779 . . . . Reno’s Hot August Nights, beginning  today (Tuesday) and running through Sunday, introduces a demolition derby and monster truck rides this year.  Both those new events take place on Thursday and Friday with the truck rides at 1:30 p.m. and the demolition derby at 3:30 p.m.  Info: www.hotaugustnights.net . . . . Also in Reno, The American Fly Fishing Trade Assn. Show takes place Aug. 16-18, at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center. Info: www.affta.com . . . . Billed as the Bay Area’s largest free bicycling fest,  Pedalfest takes place Aug. 18, a Saturday, at Oakland’s Jack London Square, with pro stunts and other bike-related performances . . A collection of currency and postage paintings are on display at John Wayne Airport through mid-January. Available only to ticketed passengers, the exhibit is in Terminal A across from Gates 2 through 5 and in Terminal C across from Gates 18 through 21 . . . . Japan Airlines, which was bailed out by the government in 2010 and removed from the Tokyo stock market, is going to be listed again next month . . . .  Travel quote of the day:  “Yosemite Valley, to me, is always a sunrise, a glitter of green and golden wonder in a vast edifice of stone and space.” (Ansel Adams)

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