Places to know
Some places you should know about
We promise you a rose garden
If taking a shortcut through a spectacular rose garden doesn’t put a happier spin on a crummy day, you’re a lost cause or in need of some prescription medication. (Try the Student Health Services center.) Thanks to donations by the late George Petersen, the grandson of Chico founder John Bidwell’s gardener, the multicolored blossoms have been blooming in the campus rose garden since 1957. Most of the original 380 roses have been replaced by memorial donations over the years. A popular spot for graduation photos, it’s look and don’t touch in this garden. If you get caught picking a rose, you’ll almost certainly be fined and/or disciplined by university administration.
Yes, we have museums
If you see schoolchildren trooping in and out of Chico State’s Holt Hall, they’re not mini-geniuses enrolled in upper-division science classes. More than 25,000 of them a year come to visit a natural history museum, often overlooked by students, that’s crammed with the bones, skulls and stuffed remains of a saber-toothed tiger, a polar bear and more.
But the existing museum, which looks like the converted science lab that it is, is nothing compared to what university and community fund-raisers plan to replace it: the $9 million Northern California Natural History Museum planned for land adjacent to the university.
Also, head over to the Museum of Anthropology in Langdon Hall, Room 301, to hear a lecture or view a cultural exhibit. It’s been at Chico State since 1970 and offers tours (call ahead) from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
Home to a doctor, CSUC presidents and now, no one
It’s now known as the Alfred E. Warrens Reception Center, but everyone we know calls it the President’s Mansion. Unless you hop up on your tippy toes while passing the tall, wooden fence on the edge of campus near Arcadian Avenue, you’d miss it from the back.
It’s also known as the Julia Morgan House, after the architect—of Hearst Castle fame—who built it for a Chico doctor’s family back in 1923. It’s not the most spectacular house in the world, and if this weren’t Chico it probably wouldn’t even pass for a mansion. But the old, white home has a place in local history-lovers’ hearts.
Robin Wilson was the last Chico State president to make his home there. President Manuel Esteban deemed the joint too rundown to crash in when he arrived in 1994, and in 2000 a $700,000 renovation began.
Try to resist the urge to run up and ring the doorbell at 301 Mansion Ave., because no one lives there anymore.
A quiet place to collect your thoughts
The Bidwell Bowl isn’t really used for events anymore, but it still offers a quiet place for people to relax next to Big Chico Creek.
Sprawled under the shadow of the Physical Science building on the southeast side of campus, the amphitheater was built as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project in 1938 and was one of several projects that created work in Chico during The Great Depression.
In the early days, concerts, speeches and other activities were held in the amphitheater. Now it’s obscured by buildings and Children’s Playground, which makes it a perfect place to read a book or get away from the bustle of campus. The bowl is also great to blaze under the sun.
You have class
Taking the headache out of making class schedules
The Wildcat Scheduler isn’t a place where you can physically hang out, but you should definitely know where it is.
The Web site was created by Robert Strazzarino, a computer science major at Chico State, and can spit out the top 20 schedules out of 50,000 possibilities in less than a tenth of a second. Just type in the classes you’re interested in, including when you want to take breaks for work or naps, and Wildcat Scheduler will generate every possible combination.
Strazzarino released a test version of the site during the spring 2004 semester and immediately reeled in about 1,000 users. The Wildcat Scheduler now boasts nearly 6,000 users and will prevent that morning yoga class and bio-molecular chemistry class from clashing. So hop to it: www.wildcatscheduler.com.
To your health
Student Health Service center is just like mom, sort of
Without Mom around to fix you a bowl of chicken-noodle soup and tell you everything is all right, you need a new place to turn when you feel like crap.
There’s no replacing Mom’s TLC, but the Student Health Service center on campus is equipped to handle just about any medical situation. Staffed by five physicians and seven nurses, the center provides everything from simple walk-in care to advanced x-ray and laboratory work.
There’s also a licensed pharmacy, where most prescription and over-the-counter medicines are available at reduced prices.
Even if you never have to go to the Student Health Service, your mom can rest assure that her baby will be taken care of when you get a case of the sniffles.