Trick shots and radio that rocks

I go to Denver to shoot pool, two local businesses celebrate birthdays and introducing Chico’s 1017X

I spent this last weekend traveling—to South Lake Tahoe for a night to visit with my sister and her husband, and then to Denver, where I got to play the part, with my friend Jackie Karol, of a pool-playing angel. South Lake was breathtaking. I’m kind of embarrassed to say I’ve never made it there before!

We flew to Denver because Karol’s company, The Angel of Billiards, was a vendor at the Rocky Mountain Cigar Festival. We did a variety of things, from trick-shot demos (mostly her, though she did teach me a few!) to mini-lessons to playing challengers for a price (a portion of the money we made will benefit local foster families). You can find Karol at Chico Billiards Academy, at 1005 W. First St., next door to The Oasis Bar & Grill.

Speaking of … The Oasis recently started accepting credit cards, which came as a surprise to pretty much everyone who’s ever stepped foot in the place. Owner Stacy Schaefer said it was just time to make the switch-over, and it seems appropriate, as it happened within a month or so of the installation of new awnings out front. I want to take this opportunity to wish The Oasis a very happy birthday, as it opened in 1961—55 years ago. Though it’s moved over the years, it’s Chico’s oldest bar.

Any day now While we’ve been patiently waiting for Crepeville and Tellers Bar & Grill to open up downtown, some new names have popped up on the horizon. I’m particularly excited about Cream, which originally opened in Berkeley in 2010. Its specialty: Ice cream sandwiched between two cookies. Sounds de-lish. Check out the store on Facebook for updates—it should be opening any day now in the North Valley Plaza.

Brand new My buddy Chris Singleton, who’s the operations manager over at 101.7 KVXX FM, had some exciting news to share this week. I’ve always liked his station, but my personal musical taste is a little more rockin’ and a little less emo-pop. Well, I’ll probably let my car radio dial hover on 101.7 a little more starting today (Aug. 25), because that’s exactly where the station is headed. It’s rebranding itself to 1017X and will be airing more alternative hits. “It’s going to be a much more exciting station to listen to,” Singleton said, “more upbeat and energetic music; fewer ballads and pop-sounding songs.” Sounds good to me!

Shoe gazing The Baker family moved to Paradise 45 years ago and it’s safe to say they’ve made their mark on Chico and Ridge roads ever since. At least when it comes to footwear. They opened Baker’s Birkenstock in Chico in 1976—the store celebrated its 40th anniversary in April—and then a second store in Paradise five years later. In honor of that store’s 35th anniversary, Celeste Baker tells me they’ll be having an open house this Friday (Aug. 26), from 2-6 p.m., complete with refreshments and specials. Stop by for the fun at 5781 Clark Road.