“The Grapes of Wrath” and Kern County have a rocky history.

Think Bonnie and Clyde, Trump and McCain, or Custer and Crazy Horse.

Fortunately, the relationship has mellowed with age, and many locals now view John Steinbeck’s masterpiece as a family story — and a powerful and deeply affecting tale of Kern’s rich history.

Now an ambitious stage version of the epic is coming to a theater near you. “The Grapes of Wrath” is set to open Friday evening at the Ovation Theatre in downtown Bakersfield, and will continue through Aug. 4.

“The script (written by Frank Galati) is theatrical, but it stays very close to the book,” said producer and Ovation co-founder Hal Friedman. “It’s

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