May is Bike Month

Biking is one of the best ways to explore the city! May is packed with events and you should sign up at May is Bike Month! If you don’t have a team already join our SacParkCity Team! We’re hosting an event May 16 at Gateway Garden where we tour the community created gardens of Oak Park with Bike Party – check out the flyer below.

There will be mural rides and lots of social rides and you can explore more routes like the River to River Trail! Don’t miss out!

Celebrate Earth Week!

This week is a great time to get out, explore, volunteer, and connect with the people making Sacramento better!

Friday evening join Bike Party for a Community Garden Tour of 10 gardens in 6 miles. Saturday join the American River Parkway Spring Cleanup, help launch the Florin Road Beautification Project, visit Mirasol Village, and visit the Environmental Justice Coalition Mixer.

Sunday is the big event at Southside Park for the ECOS Earth Day Celebration. SacParkCity will have our first table display out so stop by and say hi!

Clean CA grants

Sacramento did well by securing $16 million in state funding for various parks, cleaning, and beautification projects around town! There are constantly funds flowing from the state and we need to be positioned to put them to work making Sacramento better. Due later this month is the Urban Greening grant but we haven’t been able to identify a project yet – know someone applying that we can support or have an idea that we should build? Let us know!

Power of 10+

Spaces in Sacramento are always changing and developing – how do we ensure we are creating successful ones? Research from Project for Public Spaces shows that focus on the human experience can have immediate and widespread effects.

“The idea behind this concept is that places thrive when users have a range of reasons (10+) to be there. These might include a place to sit, playgrounds to enjoy, art to touch, music to hear, food to eat, history to experience, and people to meet. Ideally, some of these activities will be unique to that particular place, reflecting the culture and history of the surrounding community. Local residents who use this space most regularly will be the best source of ideas for which uses will work best.

Further, when cities contain at least 10 of these destinations or districts, their public perception begins to shift amongst both locals and tourists, and urban centers can become better equipped for generating resilience and innovation.”

How many places in Sacramento can you think of that have 10+ reasons to be there? Old Sac has train ride, underground tour, train museum, carousel, river walk, taste candy, history museum, boat rides, carriage rides, costume shopping, taffy sampling, eating, and drinking so checks the boxes. On R Street you can eat, drink, admire murals, see a band, shop – could use a few more. Let’s hope as Stockton Blvd is redeveloped and Alchemist Public Market grows we can create more places that make destinations and activate our city!

Sign the Charter

We need some help getting to the next step and it just takes a moment for you to help by signing the Charter for Sacramento. The National Park City Foundation just released the Journey Book, which is a guide with 10 steps to becoming a National Park City. We need 200 residents to indicate support for Sacramento becoming a National Park City and have about 50 right now.

If you think this is a great idea like we do, please take a moment and add your name to the Charter!

Art in Sept

This month seems to be the most active art month in Sacramento, so make sure you schedule some time to get your creative juices inspired!

Chalk It Up is this Labor Day Weekend at Fremont Park and Around the Town! Add your own square, sponsor one, or just enjoy the art of others while it lasts. In Natomas, the Garden and Arts Club has 7 locations you can visit.

How about meeting some of the artists in their spaces and supporting their work? Sac Open Studios happens the following two weekends on Sept 11-12 and 18-19. It’s a chance to see artist studios that are only open during this time so don’t miss it!

Last but not least, Wide Open Walls Festival is going on Sept 9-18 around town, so why not combine the open studio visits with encouragement to some of the muralists adding new walls around town! Find the spots you can walk to or spend the day on your bike exploring!

In addition to these great art events, Farm-to-Fork Festival is Sept 9-18, so combine some great food.

If you’re inspired by these things, maybe you can apply it at home – Porch Placemaking Week follows all this from Sept 27- Oct 3. You can add your porch (or balcony, or sidewalk) to the map and make something interesting for your neighbors and visitors to enjoy!


National Park Cities are hot spots of biodiversity where native species as well as landscape and adapted species fill unique microhabitats all over the city. Sacramento’s temperate climate allows for a huge variety of plants, animals, insects, and more – just take a look at all the sightings on this map from Inaturalist.

It lists 3,699 species identified by over 5,000 observers in Sacramento County, and I bet there are many more. You can join in the effort to identify even more by downloading the app and using it in your explorations around town.

I was reminded of this great tool (which I mostly use for wildflower ID) reading how cities around the world are finding success in efforts to add wildness to their cities and expand biodiversity. We can learn from these various approaches and I recommend taking a look at The Nature of Cities story. I particularly like the contributor from Bogota who stated “successful actions are those engaging people with urban nature and promoting common goals among diverse public and private stakeholders, that is, actions generating equal and just benefits for all citizens, because of conserving urban biodiversity.” We have a heavy lift to make Sacramento wilder, but it is great to konw 5,000 people area already out there making observations and we can look forward to building capacity with bioblitzes and more participants. What do you say?

River District Rising

Exciting things are happening in the River District just north of downtown with the announcement of the Alchemist Public Market and 7 new murals going up with a Metamorphosis theme!

Eating is one of our favorite things to do, and Alchemist Public Market will add to the adventure with a Community Gathering Place, an engine of Inclusive Economic Development, and a model of Responsible, Sustainable Design. You’ll be able to taste creative food from entrepreneur that Alchemist CDC has helped incubate, enjoy a farmer’s market, and much more! The project ties directly to edible landscape and tree plantings at the new Mirasol Village that Alchemist and the Sacramento Tree Foundation are leading and should be a great resource for the new residents.

Murals continue to add interest around the city through Wide Open Walls and Community Murals, but the River District is getting a special Metamorphosis theme with seven murals along the North 12th Street corridor by June 2022.  The sites are along North 12th Street between Richards and C Street.  The first one is at Loaves and Fishes at 401 North 12th Street.  The second one is at 300 North 12th Street and is currently underway. The North 12th Street public art project also includes a large art sculpture that will be located at the corner of Richards Boulevard and North 12th Street. Final approval on the sculpture will go to City Council o­n Aug. 17.

The City of Sacramento’s Office of Arts and Culture is leading the project in partnership with Sacramento Housing Redevelopment Agency (SHRA), U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development’ (HUD) and local artists collective Trust Your Struggle. The project is part of the City’s “Creative Edge” plan to bring art and culture to all Sacramento neighborhoods and communities. Stay tuned as we see art spread through the city and explore it all with the SacParkCity map.

Buy a Brick – Build a Park

Construction is underway at Alchemist CDC‘s community built and owned Pansy Park! The arbor, which is one of the space’s anchors, has been installed and the landscapers are ready to dig into the project. Located at 3601 Pansy Ave, the park will include, among other amenities, fruit trees, garden plots, a small playground, and a gathering spot for the neighborhood. Community built spaces need lots of people to support them – you can help! Buy a Brick here and stay tuned for the opening in the near future.

National Park City Journey Book

Last week was a great experience with burgeoning National Park Cities from around the world sharing their work for National Park City Week. One of the best outcomes was that we now have a guide for how to become a National Park City in Sacramento – the National Park City Journey Book. It’s an inspiring piece of work that explains the path we will need to follow to designate Sacramento National Park City and should give you an idea of how you can contribute. Take a look and let’s start down the path!