The official start of summer is June 21! Summer means different things to different people. For some, it means a break from school. To others, it means sunny days lounging by the pool. To others, it means family vacations or road trips. No matter how you define it, there’s no shortage of things to do this summer in Yolo County. From live music to wine tasting, baseball to hiking, following are some of the top reasons to visit Yolo County this summer.
Are you a music lover? You can catch local bands at locations throughout Yolo County all summer long, and best of all, it’s free! Winters hosts Music on Main on Friday nights as well as a monthly open mic night. In West Sacramento, you can watch family-friendly family concerts during Rhythm on the River held the last Thursday of the Month at Drakes the Barn. The Davisphere is a free music-centered event held in Davis from August–October. You can also enjoy live music during the Davis Farmers’ Market’s Picnic in the Park, held Wednesday evenings.
Wine lovers know Yolo County is a hidden gem. Laid-back tasting rooms can be found throughout the county, from the rolling countryside of the Dunnigan Hills to the riverside vineyards of Clarksburg. There are dozens of wineries in Yolo County to explore, many of which host special events such as live music and movie nights. Some to check out include Miner’s Leap Winery in Clarksburg, Taber Ranch in Capay, and Grindstone Wines in Esparto.
Come summer, Yolo County farms and orchards are overflowing with fresh fruits and veggies, so it’s no wonder area restaurants are showcasing these superstars in their dishes. Some of the best spots to enjoy a delicious farm-to-table meal include Preserve in Winters, featuring upscale dishes with a global touch; Savory Café in Woodland, specializing in hearty breakfasts and lunch; and Seasons Kitchen and Bar in Davis, offering refined, seasonal cuisine.
Summer isn’t just the season for fruits and veggies in Yolo County, it’s also the season for flowers. Yolo County sunflower fields blanket the region in bright gold this time of year, making for great pictures. It’s also the season for lavender, and many lavender farms in the region have U-pick opportunities, including Capay Valley Lavender. You can also pick your own flower bouquet at the Farm at Park Winters.
Summertime and baseball are made for each other! There’s nothing like catching a ball game on a warm summer evening while enjoying a hot dog and a cold beer. After all, it’s the great American pastime. Luckily, the Sacramento area’s one-and-only ballfield, Sutter Health Park, home to the Sacramento River Cats, is located in Yolo County (West Sacramento, to be exact). Afternoon and evening games are scheduled throughout the summer, with post-game fireworks on Saturday nights.
Summer is the time to get outside and enjoy the outdoors, and Yolo County has no shortage of natural spaces to explore. If hiking is your thing, a great place to check out is Putah Creek Riparian Reserve near Davis, a 640-acre ecosystem with numerous trailheads. An easy stroll for all ages is the U.C. Davis Arboretum Trail, which winds through varying habitats. Another good hike is the Road 63 to Pierce Canyon Fall Trail near Guinda. For a more challenging hike, hit the Blue Ridge Trail near Rumsey, a 20-mile loop that ascends Fiske Peak.
Prefer the water to the land? There are water-based activities in Yolo County too. You can take the ultimate summer adventure with a rafting trip along Cache Creek. Cache Canyon River Trips offers two-day trips that include riverside camping and meals. There are also mellow, one-day, self-guided floats that are suitable for families, or you can bring your own floatie and drift to your heart’s content (checking water conditions and using caution, of course).
Yolo County also has plenty of inviting swimming holes where you can cool off on a hot summer afternoon. West of Winters along Highway 128, the Putah Creek area has several access points, many of which have established picnic areas and walking trails. Capay Open Space Park provides access to lower Cache Creek and there are picnic tables and shade structures as well. There is also a swimming hole at Putah Creek Riparian Reserve in Davis.
Just a hop, skip and a jump from Sacramento and the Bay Area, Yolo County is close enough for a quick getaway, yet a world away from the day-to-day grind. Whether for a midweek escape or a long weekend, there are plenty of places to stay in Yolo County. Check out the many lodging specials on offer, or find hotels in West Sacramento, hotels in Davis, or hotels in Winters.
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