AROUND THE ISLAND: TRY ALAMEDA'S TOP 10 SUMMER TO-DO LIST
Hello summer, we are ready for you! As the days get a little longer, the weather a little warmer and the kids a lot more restless, we want to help kick off your summer with a Top 10 list of things to explore on the Island.
10: Check out a new restaurant. Alameda’s dining scene continues to delight with some new eateries that are must-tries. Gong Cha on Park Street elevates Alameda’s bubble tea game and adds baguette to our banh me mix. And CK Restaurant on Webster Street has a beautiful menu to explore.
9: Check out a new business. J Gallerie on Webster offers unique furnishings and art for your one-of-a-kind Alameda home. The Space on Santa Clara Avenue (above American Oak) is a multifunctional art studio, gallery and art school dedicated to art and pop culture. And PEDAL Cycling on Park, Alameda’s only indoor cycling studio, is all about fun, fitness and community. For your sweet tooth, Rocket Fizz on Park is locally and independently owned by an Alameda family — think Willy Wonka in Alameda! And for your wine tooth, Dashe Cellars just relocated to Spirits Alley and brings their award-winning zinfandels, classic reds and renowned chenin blanc (fermented in their “Black Bart” concrete egg) to our island.
8: Send your kids to camp. Registration is open for Year 66 of the Alameda Recreation and Park Department’s (ARPD) summer day camps, which were voted the Best Camp program in Alameda Magazine’s Best of Alameda contest. The ARPD offers “Hidden Cove” for kids who have completed all-day kindergarten and first grades. Campers explore the outdoors with hiking, an introduction to archery, camp skills, cooking and nature crafts.
“Trails End” is for kids who have completed second through fifth grades. Campers explore Redwood Regional Park in the Oakland hills while taking part in hiking, orienteering, nature crafts, cooking and more. And “Trailblazers” is an exciting program Aug. 5-7 that includes an overnight in Redwood Regional Park for kids who have completed third through fifth grades. More details on summer camps and all ARPD programs for youth, adults and seniors is available at alamedaca.gov/recreation.
7: Bike our island. Alameda’s flat terrain is a bike rider’s dream. Whether you are a regular rider or have not ridden in a while, carve out some time to take a ride. Check out the new Cross Alameda Trail in Jean Sweeney Open Space Park or bike to the beach. Did you know that Alameda has the Bay Area’s longest swimming beach? Bike over to Crown Beach or Crab Cove or ride the San Francisco Bay Trail around Bay Farm Island.
You can also take a free class and learn to ride. Bike East Bay offers free classes for adults and teens in which you learn to balance, steer and pedal in a safe, nonjudgmental environment. Learn more at bikeeastbay.org. Finally, you can end the summer by taking part in the third annual Bike for the Parks fundraiser Sept. 28. Watch a video about it at vimeo.com/189586183.
6: Try something new. You’ve seen people do it, now’s the time to try it! Head to Mike’s Paddle and Stand Up Paddleboard, rent a kayak from Stacked Adventures and cruise the bay or learn to kite-surf with Boardsports California.
5: Take action on our climate. Earlier this year, the Alameda City Council adopted a resolution to endorse a declaration of a climate emergency, stating that Alameda faces an existential crisis from sea-level rise and must act at emergency speed. The city just released a draft Climate Action and Resiliency Plan. Review the plan and comment online at opentownhall.com/7405.
4: Explore Alameda’s 23.1 square miles. Find new ways to explore the island — run across all five bridges, explore Alameda Point by bike or take the bus around town. AC Transit recently updated its real-time information technology, so your transit and map apps should now be updated every 15 seconds. Bus fares are $2.35 for adults and $1.15 for ages 5 to 18, older than 65 or for disabled customers. Use a Clipper Card and save 10 cents each ride. You can order cards online at clippercard.com, by calling 877-878-8883, or you can buy or reload a card at Walgreens.
3: Save these dates. The Alameda Point Antiques Faire is the first Sunday of each month. Check it out on June 2, July 7 and Aug. 4. Alameda has the longest July Fourth parade in the country, and this year you can run the 5K parade route before the parade, head to the Coast Guard Festival after the parade, and end the day at the USS Hornet. Last but not least, the second annual Alameda Mini Maker Faire is taking place Aug. 11 at Alameda Point. Check out the call for makers at alameda.makerfaire.com.
2: Cat and kittens and bunnies, oh my! FAAS South Shore will open in mid-June! We are so excited that Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter will have an accessible storefront with cats and rabbits for adoption and dog events on the weekends. Stop in, you may see a friendly face.
1: Stay and play. This Memorial Day weekend and next week, ignore the travel traffic and stay and play in Alameda. Check out the Alameda Farmers Market on Saturdays and Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Haight Avenue and Webster. Support our local businesses, and enjoy our parks and beaches. And offer big congratulations to everyone who is graduating. Happy summer, Alameda!
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