Fender Announces Opening of Visitor Center

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Fender Musical Instruments Corp. (FMIC) is very proud to announce the opening of its new Corona, Calif., Visitor Center and the inauguration of free public tours of the adjacent manufacturing facility. Both mark the first time in Fender’s 65-year history that the company has opened its doors to the public for an engaging look at its history and legacy and an up-close look at the manufacturing processes for its iconic instruments and amplifiers.

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Inside the 8,600-square-foot Visitor Center, located near Fender’s historical Southern California birthplace, museum-quality exhibits include interactive displays of modern Fender musical products, historic instruments, rare photographs and artifacts, a tribute to Leo Fender, the Fender Hall of Fame, video presentations on the evolution of the electric guitar (including rare archival footage), displays presenting reflections on Fender by musicians throughout the history of modern music, and much more.

The facility also includes a retail shop where visitors can browse and purchase Fender apparel, accessories, collectibles and other items. Guests can also purchase an instrument, or even design and purchase their own instrument. The Visitor Center also serves as the starting and concluding points for the free public tours of the adjacent Fender factory and world-famous Fender Custom Shop.

After a series of grand opening events during the previous week, the Fender Visitor Center will open to the public on Monday, Sept. 19, at which point the twice-daily factory tours will also begin. The Visitor Center is located at 301 Cessna Circle, Corona, Calif. 92880, and will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday; the 45- to 60-minute factory tours will take place at 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. every weekday except Wednesday.

Tour Details
Open to the public every weekday except Wednesday; admission free through Dec. 31, 2011.

Hours of Operation
 • Visitor Center: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
 • Factory Tour: 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.
 • Factory tour lasts approximately 45 - 60 minutes.

Guest Policies
 • Visitor Center open to all ages.
 • Factory Tour open to children age 9 and older accompanied by parent or guardian.
 • Factory tour guests must wear closed-toe shoes.
 • Maximum of 10 guests per tour; larger groups call ahead for appointment.

Location & Directions
Take SR-91 to Corona, then exit 47 north to Auto Center Drive. Turn right onto Railroad Street. Turn left onto Cessna Circle. The Fender Visitor Center is at 301 Cessna Circle.

Contact Information
Phone: 951.898.4040
Email: visitorcenter@fender.com


Dig Fender's Flickr feed for some amazing shots from the Grand Opening celebration.

Click here to read GP Senior Editor Art Thompson's recap of the Grand Opening festivities

GP's Barry Cleveland was also in the house. Visit Guitar Player's Facebook and Twitter pages for photos.

Click here to read Barry Cleveland's blog: Images From the Fender Visitor Center Celebration.

Click here to view video of Fender CEO Larry Thomas' opening address, joined by Phyllis Fender.