Remembering A Surprise Presidential Visit To Fresno's Simonian F - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Remembering A Surprise Presidential Visit To Fresno's Simonian Farms

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FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) -

The White House has not released details about President Barack Obama's first visit to Fresno. President Obama is going to be in town Friday to discuss the drought.

The Presidential visit has one local businessman reminiscing about a surprise he received from another President.

At Simonian Farms there's a huge sign over the door and pictures from September 5, 1995 decorating the walls. The mementoes remember the day President Bill Clinton made a surprise visit to Simonian Farms.

"I was eating lunch, I was picking grapes, and I had 50–guys out in the field," says Simonian, "Then my secretary called me and said, "The President's coming you need to get back here."

Dennis Simonian thought his secretary was joking with him.

"She said, "Dennis, the secret service is standing over my desk. You better get here in 45–minutes or you're going to miss him," adds Simonian.

When Simonian got back to the store, President Clinton was about to arrive.

"They had a helicopter flying up on top, they had dogs in here, they had guys in here, and they closed all the streets off."

When Clinton's car rolled up that's when Simonian realized he was going to meet the President of the United States. After shaking hands and taking pictures, Simonian and President Clinton chatted about the antiques in front of the store.

"There were secret service and I heard the guy in the back go," "Oh we need to leave and he wants to talk to this guy some more," says Simonian.

A piece of Fresno is actually in Bill Clinton's Presidential Museum in Arkansas. Simonian sent two bikes to the White House and those bikes are now in the museum.

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