From stainless-steel founts mounted in teal-tiled walls, Razzle Dazzle Frozen Yogurt's eponymous treat flows into cups before being sprinkled with fun toppings. A menu of flavors that rotate weekly, such as cake batter, Hawaiian Delight sorbet, and dulce de leche, form creamy swirls as customers fill their cups with their preferred portion sizes. Bins of cookies, candies, and fresh fruits wait to be spooned onto frozen peaks, creating complete treats that can be enjoyed inside the shop, on patio seating, or in your getaway car.
The Christiansen family's roots in the carnival industry run deep, stretching back to Ralph B. Christiansen's 1920s amusement business, which his hard-working sons kept running through World War II. Today, Ralph's grandson, Buzz, hosts more than 80 Christiansen Amusements events per year and rents out carnival rides for parties and gatherings. Events pop up throughout Southern California and feature an assortment of family-friendly excursions ranging from mild kids' rides to more intense rides such as the Skydiver or Kamikaze. Carnival games challenge guests' hand-eye coordination, rewarding feats of strength or accuracy with stuffed animals to give to dates or mount on the hood of one's car.
In 1976, two UC Davis graduate students bought 20 acres of land in the highly arable Capay Valley. One of the students, Kathleen Barsotti, was working toward her master's degree in ecology and was determined to grow vegetables and fruits in an eco-friendly way: organically. The organic-food movement hadn't yet entered the public consciousness, and Kathleen worked overtime to convince restaurants, stores, and consumers of the taste-able merits of her process. Over time, given the possible health and environmental benefits of certified organic food, she succeeded. The farm sprouted to 300 acres to accommodate the increased demand. Today, a second generation runs the farm as well as a shop inside San Francisco's Ferry Building. Dubbed Farm Fresh To You, the store furnishes customers' bags or portable cornucopia horns with all sorts of soil-sprouted goods, including heirloom tomatoes, sweet peas, and fresh asparagus. The farm also teams up with fellow Yolo County and Pacific Northwest farms to deliver boxes of seasonal produce to area homes.
Big Spoon Yogurt’s special topping bar complements hot cocoa and frozen yogurt ensembles with more than 75 novel accompaniments. Beverage construction commences at Big Spoon’s topping bar, where steaming chassis of hot cocoa ($1.25–$2.59) don marshmallow tires—in mint, german chocolate, cinnamon, and toasted coconut flavors—and warm-cookie steering wheels in a rousing race to anticipating taste buds. Patrons sweeten metric-system conversions with frozen yogurt by the ounce (price varies by location), available in chocolate, vanilla, and a rotating stock of non-dairy and sugar-free flavors. Seasonal winter flavors provide the taste of frozen eggnog without the hassle of holding company Christmas parties in a polar bear’s living room, and fall flavors scour a farmer’s windowsill for apple pie and pumpkin yogurt—all customizable with the bar’s more than 75 toppings.
The Meat House strives for community involvement and serves up a selection of organic, all-natural, grass-fed meats to calm carnivorous cravings. Meat options include freshly butchered beef, lamb from the American Midwest, Virginia-bred pork, and exotic meats such as buffalo, alligator, and ostrich—or as it's more commonly known, the megachicken. Customers can run up meatometers with marinated steak tips ($19.98 for 2 lb.), and poultrygeists can enjoy the clucking curse of lemon-and-pepper chicken breast ($13.98 for 2 lb.). The Meat House's premium proteins are dressed with signature marinades, using a process first conceptualized by a team of synchronized-swimming bovines. The Meat House also offers customers a variety of prepared foods.
The growl of lions and tigers will be replaced by the growls of guitars as the Sactopalooza Spring Party lights up the Sacramento Zoo with music from tribute bands and DJ Rigatony. No Duh blasts a high-energy pop set based on the music of No Doubt with a number of visuals, costumes, and props from the band’s music videos. Nominated for Best Tribute Band at the 2010 San Diego Music Awards, the Red Not Chili Peppers fill the air with classic funk-rock melodies and the four-chord password that grants entry to the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame. In addition to the concerts, attendees can partake in hands-on activities such as mechanical bull riding and gladiator jousting with foam poles.
The Sactopalooza Spring Party is the largest annual fundraising event for the Active 20-30 Club of Sacramento. This group of 20- to 30-year-old volunteers works year-round to improve the lives of local children with special needs. In addition to raising funds for children, the group organizes hands-on events to interact with children at an annual picnic, winter clothing drives, and a holiday party at the UC Davis cancer center. Proceeds from the party helps support these events and the organization’s work with children throughout the region.