By Amy Thoma
With the weekend quickly approaching and Spring Fever about to hit, I thought I’d highlight some fun, cheap dates on the grid.
Option 1: Crocker Art Museum
The Crocker is fabulous for a first or second date. It’s free on Sunday mornings and $6/adult during normal hours. Not only is it cheap, but wandering the halls of the Crocker looking at art will give you something to discuss and if the silence gets awkward you can claim, “I’m thinking about the deeper meaning of this piece.” The traveling exhibitions are generally really great and the permanent collection has some real gems—particularly if you’re interested in California history. And if the date is going well, you can follow it up with drinks or a walk by the river in Old Sacramento.
Option 2: Bike Ride on the American River Parkway
The Parkway is one of Sacramento’s best assets—flat, scenic, accessible and most importantly—free! Ride your bike from downtown to Old Fair Oaks and indulge in the Sunflower’s veggie burgers (seriously, they’re amazing) or if you want to stay closer to home, start downtown, jump on the trail at 56th and H, ride for a bit and hit up Selland’s Market Cafe on your way home. I have it on good authority that a glass of wine or a cupcake from Selland’s after a bike ride is a perfect ending to this cheap, fun, outdoorsy date.
Option 3: Picnic in Land Park, McKinley Park or Capitol Park
Stop in at Old Soul Co on 19th and L for some yummy bread, go to Ginger Elizabeth for some truffles and grab some hummus and veggies at Safeway. Then, head out and enjoy one of Sacramento’s many gorgeous parks. When you’re done eating pretend you’re six again and play on the swings and feed the ducks. Word to the wise: Alcohol is not allowed in public parks so keep your wine under wraps or better yet, leave it at home.
Option 4: Second Saturday
Every second Saturday of the month the art galleries, restaurants and shops downtown stay open late and often have live music, free appetizers and wine or other special events. Second Saturday is always fun—I recommend the Solomon Dubnick Gallery (great art, they usually have champagne and dessert), the 20th Street Gallery (their art will get you talking if nothing else and there’s usually live music out front) and finish up with a walk around the 18th and L area. It’s always fun to people watch, stop in new stores or restaurants and to be part of what feels like a giant block party.
Option 5: 58 Degrees on a Sunday Night
58 Degrees and Holding doesn’t have a corkage fee on Sunday afternoon/evening. Stop by their shop, buy a bottle and carry it the 3 feet across the threshold into the restaurant for an inexpensive bottle of wine. Drinking half a bottle early on in a relationship isn’t always smart (not that I would know…) but you can’t beat the ambiance of 58 Degrees and their Ahi Tacos are amazing.
EDITOR’s NOTE: What do you think? What’s your idea of a perfect date in Sactown – that won’t break the budget? Leave a comment below or email us at girlsonthegrid AT gmail DOT com.