Bidwell Park, with its sprawling 3,670 acres, is divided into Upper and Lower Bidwell Park. Lower Bidwell Park is home to the enchanting Sycamore Pool, a unique public swimming area created by damming Big Chico Creek. Enjoy a family-friendly day at Caper Acres Playground, complete with whimsical play structures designed to spark imagination.
Upper Bidwell Park offers the more adventurous a chance to explore majestic cliffs, rugged terrain, and breathtaking vistas. The park has more than 70 miles of trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding, catering to all skill levels. Chico also offers access to the Sacramento River, where you can engage in fishing, kayaking or simply enjoy a leisurely riverside picnic.
Chico is a city that values creativity, diversity, and innovation. The Chico Art Center, located in the historic Chico train depot, showcases local and regional artists through rotating exhibits and offers a variety of art classes for all ages. The Chico Theater Company, a local gem, produces high-quality live theater that entertains, educates, and enriches the community.
For those who enjoy hands-on learning experiences, the Gateway Science Museum is a must-visit. Interactive exhibits and engaging science programs for all ages make it a popular destination for both locals and tourists. Chico is also home to the Museum of Northern California Art (monca), featuring contemporary and modern art from Northern Californian artists.
Chico's strong sense of community is fostered through numerous volunteer opportunities, local events, and community organizations. Events like the Snow Goose Festival, a celebration of wildlife and the winter migration of waterfowl, bring the community together for fun, education, and camaraderie.
The Chico Certified Farmers' Market, held weekly, is more than just a place to buy fresh produce – it's a hub for the community to gather, support local vendors, and enjoy live music. Sustainable initiatives, such as the annual Chico Velo Wildflower Century bike ride, promote environmental consciousness and draw like-minded individuals to the city.
Chico's dedication to education is evident in its top-rated public and private K-12 schools, with a focus on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) programs.
Butte College, a local community college, offers affordable higher education and is recognized for its sustainability efforts, including the largest solar array at any community college in California.
California State University, Chico, also known as Chico State, is known for its beautiful campus and outstanding academic programs. With over 340 undergraduate and graduate degree options, Chico State attracts students from all over the world.
Chico's food scene celebrates the bounty of the surrounding agricultural region. Farm-to-table restaurants like Red Tavern and The Kitchen Table prioritize the use of seasonal, locally-sourced ingredients to create delicious, innovative dishes.
The city's thriving craft beer scene is anchored by the iconic Sierra Nevada Brewing Company. With brewery tours, a taproom, and an outdoor amphitheater for live performances, Sierra Nevada is a must-visit destination for beer enthusiasts. Other local breweries, such as Secret Trail Brewing Company and British Bulldog Brewery, add to the diverse selection of craft beers and make Chico a true craft beer destination.
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