Holiday goodness a-plenty

Wholesome, fun stuff to do to kick off the holiday season

Chico Chai brewmistress Sarah Adams cooks up a batch of aromatic and delicious chai.

Chico Chai brewmistress Sarah Adams cooks up a batch of aromatic and delicious chai.

file PHOTO by christine g.k. lapado-breglia

Gearing up for the holidays
I have gotten notices about a number of fun, festive holiday-type things going on around town.

I’ll start with the heavenly yumminess that is Chico Chai: That business will be holding free chai tastings every Sunday in December from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at its 1919 Park Ave. location. This is your opportunity to try other flavors of chai besides Chico Chai’s classic “original brew” (though that variety of deliciousness will be on hand as well). Hang out in the cozy, aromatic tasting room and check out the chocolate, red and mate flavors of chai also.

Buy chai (prebrewed or loose-leaf, made with organic spices and fair-trade tea) for holiday sipping and gifts, while you’re there. Check out the cute chai cups for sale as well.

Go to to learn more about Chico Chai.

More goodness:
Patrick Ranch Museum’s 5th Annual Fine Arts & Gift Sale Fundraiser will take place Dec. 6-8. The three-day event kicks off with a fine-arts reception on Friday, Dec. 6, from 4 to 8 p.m., featuring wine-tasting, hors d’oeuvres, live music from Aaron Jaqua, and live artists on hand to chat with about their work.

Photo By

On Sat., Dec. 7, the venue’s fine-arts/gift sale runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and tours of the property’s Glenwood Farm House will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (tour cost: $6). Also on Dec. 7, local children’s author Naty Osa will be on hand to sign copies of her book, The Last Orchard.

On Dec. 8, the fine-arts/gift sale will occur from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (farm-house tours will operate 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), and local photographer Marianne Werner will sign her new poetry/ photography book from 2 to 3 p.m.

And on both Dec. 7 and 8, the venue’s Midway Café, in Pat’s Barn, will be serving sandwiches, hot dogs, soups, apple-spice cake and hot and cold drinks.

In addition to paintings, photographs, pottery, jewelry and more (including local foods, such as jellies and jams), made by local folks, “[b]ack by popular demand are Bernie Vigallon with his pay-it-forward birdhouses (all funds from sales are donated to a nontraditional scholarship fund for at-risk teenagers),” as the Patrick Ranch press release said.

The Patrick Ranch Museum gift shop—featuring ornaments, decorations, stocking stuffers, etc.—will also be open on Dec. 7 and 8, and Dec. 14 and 15, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

There is no admission or parking fee for this event. Go to or call 342-4359 for more information. The Patrick Ranch Museum is located at 10381 Midway.

Farm trail
Holiday Cheer & Charm Out on the Farm, the grand-finale Sierra Oro Farm Trail event of the year, occurs on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, when participating farms and wineries will be open for free self-guided tours from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Go to for more details.

Farmers’ market
Monique Bird, Chico Certified Farmers’ Market co-manager, has reminded me that the last Wednesday farmers’ market of the year at North Valley Plaza will be on Nov. 27, from 7:30 a.m.-noon (today, the day before Thanksgiving). How convenient is that?