Readers’ Picks: Health & Wellness

Dr. Mark Tenenbaum

Dr. Mark Tenenbaum

Local health care provider

1ST PLACE: Enloe Medical Center

1531 Esplanade, 332-7300

Enloe Medical Center is the only hospital in town and truly lives up to and well beyond that serious responsibility. The facility has expanded and improved over the last few years and its staff—from the physicians to the nurses to the maintenance workers—are consistently professional, friendly and caring. Enloe's stated mission is “to improve the quality of your life through patient-centered care.” Adding to its overall awesomeness is the helicopter service that has saved many a life over the decades.

2ND PLACE: Mission Ranch Primary Care

114 Mission Ranch Blvd., 894-0500

3RD PLACE: Argyll Medical Group

100 Independence Circle, 899-0295

General practitioner

1ST PLACE: Stuart Mishelof

100 Independence Circle, 899-2106

Adult and adolescent medicine—including diabetic management, men's health, sports medicine and preventive health—are Stuart Mishelof's specialties. He is a physician's assistant at Argyll Medical Group in north Chico, where he's worked with Dr. Roy Bishop since 2008. Mishelof is appreciated for being very thorough with his patients, and as well as scoring points for approachability and knowledge.

2ND PLACE: Dr. Roy Bishop (Argyll Medical Group)

100 Independence Circle, 899-0130

3RD PLACE: Dr. Herbert Lim (Mission Ranch Primary Care)

114 Mission Ranch Road, Ste. 10, 894-0500

Acupuncture clinic

1ST PLACE: The Pinwheel Community Acupuncture Project

740 Flume St., 345-5566

The Pinwheel Community Acupuncture Project near downtown Chico is part of the People's Organization of Community Acupuncture, a nation-wide cooperative effort to make acupuncture—once a luxury of those with the money to gamble on alternative health care methods—affordable to all. To that end, they charge on a sliding scale and pride themselves on a “pay what you can, no questions asked” philosophy, enabling many Chicoans to try out a procedure that has been touted to cure everything from the common cold to emotional imbalance.

2ND PLACE: Chico Community Acupuncture

1057 Village Lane, 345-5300

3RD PLACE: Amy Dawson

572 Rio Lindo Ave., 891-1823

Alternative health care provider

1ST PLACE: Chico Community Acupuncture

1815 Mangrove, 345-5300

This well-established clinic, which offers a range of services, from acupuncture and massage to traditional Chinese medicine, uses a sliding scale for payment. That accessibility for locals, along with the clinic's friendly staff, led by Olivia Peters-Lazaro, has made the business the top choice for Alternative Health Care Provider.

2ND PLACE: The Pinwheel Community Acupuncture Project

740 Flume St., 345-5566

3RD PLACE: Chico Creek Wellness

360 E. First St., 342-8464


1ST PLACE: Mark Tenenbaum (Tenenbaum Chiropractic)

1049 Village Lane, 680-8920

Dr. Mark Tenenbaum (simply “Dr. Mark” around the office) set up shop in Chico a little over a year ago and clearly he's made quite an impression thus far. With visits costing just $20, Tenenbaum Chiropractic is as affordable as it is rejuvenating. His primary focus is on traditional chiropractic adjustments, orthopedic massage and craniosacral massage, and clients range in age from infants to the elderly.

2ND PLACE: Preference Chiropractic

1635 Magnolia Ave., 895-0224

Caper Acres

3RD PLACE: John Fragaso (Fragaso Chiropractic)

2062 Talbert Drive, 891-9010


1ST PLACE: Dr. Patrick Tedford

643 W. East Ave., 342-0502

Dr. Patrick Tedford continues his generous and heartfelt caring for kids. Over the decades he has developed a reputation as a doctor who genuinely and compassionately listens to and cares for his young patients. A graduate of Notre Dame Medical School, Dr. Tedford has practiced his pediatric skills in Chico for nearly 40 years. During that time, he has seen and treated three generations of patients and plans to continue doing so. Chicoans must be happy to hear that!

2ND PLACE: Dr. Robert Stanley

1427 Magnolia Ave., 896-1446

3RD PLACE : Dr. Paul Wassermann

277 Cohasset Road, 332-6000

Dental care

1ST PLACE: Nelsen Family Dentistry

1307 Esplanade, Ste. 4, 898-8511

Opened by Drs. John and Missy Nelsen 24 years ago, Nelsen Family Dentistry has become a household name in Chico when it comes to caring for your teeth. Specializing in everything from routine cleanings to root canals to dentures, the Nelsens—along with Dr. Thomas Farris and a large team of friendly and professional hygienists and assistants—are known for the quality of care they give to keeping Chicoans' smiles healthy and pearly white.

2ND PLACE: Willow Creek Dentistry

2765 Esplanade, 891-6611

3RD PLACE: Ashley Harrison DDS

1660 Humboldt Road, Ste. 1, 894-5454

Eye care specialist

1ST PLACE: Chico Eye Center

605 W. East Ave., 895-1727; 2056 Talbert Drive, Ste. 100, 893-1695

Chicoans know whom to trust when it comes to the health and appearance of their peepers. At the vast Chico Eye Center—with two Chico offices and another in Paradise—they benefit from a wide range of services, from basic lenses or contacts to cataract care and LASIK surgery to treatments for puffiness and insufficient eyelashes. The staff is known for being friendly and efficient and always putting the patient—and the eyes!—first.

2ND PLACE: North Valley Eye Care

114 Mission Ranch Blvd., 891-1900

3RD PLACE: Family Eye Care

2565 Ceanothus Ave., Ste. 155, 899-3939


1ST PLACE: In Motion Fitness

1293 E. First Ave., 343-5678

Again and again, In Motion Fitness takes home the title of Best Gym. Little wonder—it features state-of-the-art treadmills, elliptical machines, free weights and resistance machines, pools (yes, multiple), a basketball gym, yoga studio, fitness classes and more. Want to try out zumba or pilates? No problem. Want a personal trainer to create a tailor-made workout just for you? They've got you covered. There's even a spa, café and child care on-site.

2ND PLACE: Chico Sports Club

260 Cohasset Road, 345-9427

3RD PLACE: NorCal Strength & Conditioning

629 Entler Ave., Ste. 17, 605-2766

Martial arts studio

1ST PLACE: Azad’s Martial Arts Family Center

313 Walnut St., Ste. 150, 892-2923

What better way for you and your family to get in shape than by joining and then faithfully visiting Azad's Martial Arts Family Center? Owner Farshad Azad is a grandmaster of martial arts who's practiced his craft for more than 35 years. He also teaches law enforcement, personal safety, health and the philosophy and history of martial arts.

Sycamore Pool at One-Mile

2ND PLACE: Haley’s Martial Arts Center

260 Cohasset Road, 895-3114

3RD PLACE: Morning Sun Martial Arts

135 W. Eighth Ave., Ste. A, 342-5833

Massage therapist

1ST PLACE: Babette Maiss

13 Williamsburg Lane, 321-5668

Once again, Babette Maiss and her magical hands have been chosen as Chico's Best Massage Therapist. Her business continues to expand, mostly via word of mouth. Her clients range from athletes seeking deep-tissue sports massages to expecting mothers relaxing with prenatal massage and post-cancer patients receiving lymphatic treatments. Clients also seek Maiss for help with their lower back pain, arthritis, bursitis, fatigue, high blood pressure and diabetes.

2ND PLACE: Kristen Bobertz

2760 Esplanade, Ste. 150, 209-400-5946

3RD PLACE: Lindsey Pernell

1279 E. First Ave., Ste. B, 520-7075

Pet doctor

1ST PLACE: Valley Oak Veterinary Center

2480 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway, 342-7387

At Valley Oak Veterinary Center, you can call any time for an update on your furry friend's condition because the lights are always on. The center, which is open even on holidays, offers the latest in diagnostic tools and equipment, as well as top-notch veterinarians, specialists and medical staff, which all make for a high standard of care. And that is important when dealing with patients who can't verbalize how they feel. Appointments not necessary. Woof!

2ND PLACE: Evers Veterinary Clinic

1150 El Monte Ave., 343-0713

3RD PLACE: Chico Animal Hospital

3015 Esplanade, 342-0518

Place for kids to play

1ST PLACE: Caper Acres

Childhood, ideally, is a rare time in the course of the human experience when fantasy and reality exist in equal balance, and Caper Acres, located near the One-Mile Recreation Area in Bidwell Park, is a perfect place to experience this. It's a fun and interactive playground filled with fairy-tale-themed structures, from a towering crooked house to subterranean mines, and where Humpty Dumpty maintains a constant vigil from his perch atop the wall, before that whole big fall fiasco. So beloved is this fantasy oasis that, when city budget cuts led to threatened closures, volunteers and outside organizations stepped in to keep the gates open.

2ND PLACE: Bidwell Park

3RD PLACE: Wildwood Park

Place to take a dip

1ST PLACE: Sycamore Pool at One-Mile

A Chico landmark and perennial favorite, Sycamore Pool at Bidwell Park's One-Mile Recreation Area is one of the city's most striking attractions, where community members from all walks of life gather to enjoy the beautiful natural surroundings and swim together in a concrete-lined section of Big Chico Creek. It's a hotspot not only in the summer, but every New Year's Day, when hundreds of people line the banks for a 1 p.m. Polar Bear Plunge into the icy waters.

2ND PLACE: In Motion Fitness

1293 E. First Ave., 343-5678

3RD PLACE: Bear Hole

Upper Bidwell Park

Yoga studio

1ST Place: In Motion Fitness

1293 E. First Ave., 343-5678

See also Best Gym

2ND PLACE: Yoga Center of Chico

250 Vallombrosa, Ste. 150, 342-0100

3RD PLACE: Awakened Yoga

1390 E. Ninth St., Ste. 130, 514-4463