08 Nov Davis for Days
Just west of Sacramento, Davis is a town full of brilliant folks that pulses with an energetic, contemplative vibe. The University of California at Davis is home to the Aggies and a plethora of people studying to receive doctorate degrees from what’s considered a “Public Ivy” school due to its high educational standards. Movers and shakers have contributed to the town’s atmosphere and eclectic charms, so a tour through some of its sites is a must for anyone visiting their favorite Aggie or intrigued by Davis’ reputation as a city that constantly sets the standard for innovation.
Restaurants as rich in history as flavor are hard to find, but Bistro 33 takes the cake for repurposing a building: it was once the Historic City Hall in downtown Davis. Their menu boasts Pacific Northwest-inspired cuisine “with a sense of history” and award-winning fare. Bistro lights adorn the outside patio (which has three levels), and is built with a fire pit as its focal point. With a full-service bar and a wood-fire stove for some authentic pizza, the ambience is perfect for relaxed conversation and smiling faces. The restaurant serves meals all day long, but dinner is the draw — be sure to end your day of strolling the streets with a nice glass of wine as you take in the local community over firelight and delicious aromas.
Though this retro music store has a monopoly on the new and used music retail sales in the area, it’s deservedly so; this place has a treasure trove of classic music selections and incredible customer service to boot. While you’re downtown, make a detour to 2nd and F streets to check out this gem and revisit some of the greatest songs ever made. Music is a souvenir you never need to feel guilty about buying, as it’s a timeless remembrance of a great time had by all. Plus, it fits perfectly into a suitcase! Ask the staff for some history on the shop, and which rockers have stopped by, as you’re in for an amazing amount of history at this groovy shop.
Davis Farmers Market
The absolute best way to get to know a city is to visit its farmer’s market. Davis puts on a great one, year round, with Saturdays being the best day for out-of-towners to come check out the goods. Seven to ten thousand people visit this farmer’s market every week, as it sprawls over a third of Davis’ five-acre Central Park. Beat the heat under a pavilion built with public funds, proudly proving that creating the idea of a farmer’s market during the social awakening of the 60’s and 70’s was a good idea. If you visit from March to October you can partake in the “Picnic In The Park” every Wednesday, where you can enjoy music from local bands, get dinner at the International Food Faire, and purchase beer or wine to sip as you enjoy the events. Fun for the whole family, and a great opportunity to wind down after a day of touristy adventures!
Historical landmarks abound in Davis, and the Varsity is one of the more aesthetically pleasing pieces of architecture in the city. Originally opened in 1921, it was remodeled in 1950 as “Streamline Moderne”, a style related to Art Deco, which strove for a modern and artistic expression to complement the new age of machines and progress. Smart thinkers have always populated Davis, with innovation at the core of every movement in the community. It was home to musical theatre for a brief period, before reverting back to cinema where it now plays indie films and art-focused projects. Catch a flick as you wind down from a day of site-seeing in one of the two renovated theaters that reside in this century-old edifice that keeps the pulse of the artistic community in Davis.
Davis = Bicycling
For every one student on campus at UC there are two bikes, making Davis “The Bicycle Capital of the U.S.”. This should come as no surprise, as the University and town are both well known for their forward-thinking and health-focused approach to living sustainably. Davis is a small town with wide streets, level terrain, and great California climate, and the movement for bike pathways in the 60’s has made it one of the safest places to ride a bicycle in the country. Rent a bike and take in the sites — you’ll be safe and get a relaxing workout as well. It’s not just students who ride bicycles, but professors, retirees, and entire families, as the network of pathways makes commuting a breeze. Davis has been a city to watch, and emulate, for decades now, so be sure to absorb the vibes while you’re there and implement their sustainable, futuristic ways in your own town.
UC Davis College Stores
Whether you decide to ride a bike, rent a car, or hoof it around town to check out all that Davis has to offer (which is a lot), don’t forget to stop into one of the college stores and grab some Stepforward apparel so you fit in with the locals. Our timeless UC Davis collection spans across generations, and will assist you in presenting your pride in such an innovative university and town for years to come. Go Mustangs, and keep on creating, Aggies! All eyes are on Davis’ next move.