AAA Editor Notes
Fender Visitor Center and Factory Tour is off SR 91 and Auto Center Drive (exit 47), at 301 Cessna Cir. Inside the 6,800-square-foot visitor center, near where Fender Musical Instruments Corp. manufactures guitars, amplifiers and accessories, enthusiasts browse through high-end instruments and memorabilia. The entry hall features the Fender Hall of Fame honoring musicians—ranging from The Beach Boys to Jimi Hendrix and founder Leo Fender—and their choice guitars, such as the replica ’60s Stratocaster (strung in reverse) that looks like the one Hendrix could have jammed to at Woodstock. In the showroom, you can try out your guitar skills and look at album covers, posters and bios.
The 1-hour factory tour displays the production process. You'll pass machines stamping out pickguards as well as areas where alder or ash wood gets shaped and sanded into a Fender guitar or bass. At one work station a worker even inserts, by hand, the frets on a fretboard. A quality control area tests the finished products.
Note: Closed-toe shoes are required on factory tour.
Guided tours are available. Time: Allow 1 hour, 30 minutes minimum.