Where’s the party? For the majority of young adults in Chico, that question can be answered by standing on a downtown sidewalk, picking up a rock and chucking it over your shoulder and waiting for the guy you just pegged to point you toward the fun by pressing your face through the bar’s window. The point is: If your needs are simply to cut loose by pounding several drinks and maybe doing a little dancing in a packed room of like-minded party-seekers, then you are seriously good to go. Chico makes the question, “Where’s the party?” ridiculously pointless.
Given that fact, what gives with the party guides/promoters on Facebook telling you where you have to be?
Part Chico (aka PartyChico.com) boasts of being “dedicated to the social culture that is Chico nightlife,” and suggests you “Check back often for the best social venues and upcoming events!”
Then there’s Chico Scene, “the Face of Chico Nightlife,” where they “strive to give all the youth and people of Chico the information they need, to have the best possible Night Life experience.” (Chico Scene’s long-winded mission is particularly ridiculous as it offers a more “epic” experience than simply drinking, dancing and hooking up, then proceeds to do nothing but talk about bars and post a bunch of photos of girls in tight shorts bending over for the camera.)
Whatever. I don’t blame them for wanting to be connected to a bunch of people looking to have fun (and they do produce events that could be fun), but the trolling of local venues to repost specials and event listings that are produced by others, and painting over it all with your logo is useless. And Chico isn’t so complicated as to warrant it. It’s like creating a guide to the food court at the Chico Mall: “No need to walk around in a big circle like a chump. Here’s what’s crackin’ at Sbarro tonight: a fresh pan of baked ziti. And the new Tripleberry flavor at Orange Julius is killin’ it!”
The Sacramento River situation While I am not a fan of the wreckage that drunk dipshits leave in their wake during the Labor Day float, the one-sixteenth of me that is Libertarian actually does not agree with the county’s efforts to ban booze on the river. Actually, I think they should just save money and keep all safety personnel out of the area and let the kids go nuts. Dehydration, river snags and natural selection will dampen the party spirit soon enough. As far as paying for cleanup, just charge a launch fee; raise student fees at Butte College and Chico State; put a surcharge on all tube sales/rentals. That’s three money-makers right off the top of my head that would more than pay for the removal of Styrofoam coolers and any bloated floaters.
Actually, there is a brand-new alternative to the Labor Day float that maybe all sides can agree on. It, too, involves sweating and getting dirty by the river, and it even has beer! On Saturday, Sept. 10, River Partners (a nonprofit conservation group that looks after the same river that tubers crap all over) is hosting its first Mudder Nature Challenge 5K mud run and obstacle course (and 8-mile cyclecross bike race) next to the Sacramento River. Mud runs are happening all over the country, and as with the funky Bay to Breakers race in S.F., participants often wear costumes during what is as much a goofy party as it is a serious race. (Though in this event, you’ll be slogging through mud pits and various obstacles—tires, tunnels, hay bales, sand traps—in your special duds.)
The race happens at Willow Bend on the river, in Colusa County, and there will be food and beverages (including beer!) available for purchase at the finish line (barbecue lunch is provided for participants). Register online at www.muddernaturechallenge.com. Maybe I’ll see you there.