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Here Comes the Sun: Your A-to-Z Guide to Summer Fun

Leave the hard stuff to us—that’s what we’re here for: the A-to-Z of your entire summer is mapped out and ready to go. Whether you’re looking to lean into the heat and enjoy the great outdoors with a hike or a picnic, feed that summer hunger with tasty local bites, or relax with a cool local libation, it’s all here for you! There might even be a thing or two you hadn’t thought of. 

Animal spotting photo by Doug Miller.


A is for Animal Spotting. Plenty of wildlife, including birds, come out to play in the glorious sunshine. Check online for native species local to your area and have fun spotting some of these characters this summer. If you live near the Effie Yeaw Nature Center, keep an eye out for swallowtail butterflies, acorn woodpeckers, cedar waxwings, and tree swallows; if you’re near Folsom Lake Recreation Area, be on the lookout for hawks, white pelicans, geese, and jays; around Mather Regional Park you’re sure to see hawks, pheasants, bluebirds, and orioles; in the Cosumnes River Preserve, you’ll see your share of avocets, bluebirds, pheasants, and muskrats.

Bricks Eats & Drinks; Photo by Dante Fontana


B is for Burgers. Greasy grins are mandatory in summer and they come complimentary with these mouthfuls! Try the Goose Port Burger from Goose Port Public House: 1/3 lb. certified Angus beef, melty cheddar, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, GP sauce on a “soft yet tough-enough” Max’s Bun out of Fresno (available for delivery via your favorite app or pickup through their website; cocktails, wine, and craft beer are also available) or take it ’round the world with Bricks Eats & Drinks and their divine Greek-inspired Bo Peep Burger: ground lamb, grilled onions, pickled cucumbers, feta, lettuce, tomatoes, and paprika-yogurt sauce on a brioche roll (available for takeout; cocktails, beer, and wine also available!). 316 Vernon Street, Roseville, 916-886-5080,; 482 Main Street, Placerville, 530-303-3480,

Snooks Candies


C is for Chocolate and Candy. If your sweet tooth is like mine, it doesn’t take a break just because it’s hot outside. Get all the chocolate, brittle, caramel corn, and sweet treats you love from Snooks Chocolate Factory—all available for in-store pickup, curbside delivery, or even via mail! 731 Sutter Street, Folsom, 916-985-0620,

Julian’s Pâtisserie and Café


D is for Dessert. Put the sweet in summer with local desserts! Visconti’s Ristorante has homemade cannoli available straight to your mouth from their restaurant via your favorite app, takeout, or curbside pickup; Julian’s Pâtisserie And Café’s croissant monkey bread pairs perfectly with their frozen hot chocolate (available for pickup or takeout). Plus, if you enjoy it in the privacy of your own home, no one can judge you! 2700 East Bidwell Street, Suite 700, Folsom, 916-983-5181,; 6610 Folsom Auburn Road, Suite 7, Folsom, 916-936-4735,

Lazy Dog


E is for Essentials. If you’re struggling to gather pantry essentials or know someone who is short of supplies, Lazy Dog has a “Home Essentials” package that might help you make it through a few more weeks. It comes complete with three pounds of boneless skinless chicken breast (raw), 15 eggs, one gallon of whole milk, one loaf of bread, one pound of unsalted butter, two pounds of rice (uncooked), two pounds of onions, two pounds of red potatoes, two pounds of carrots, and three rolls of toilet paper. Other options include a “DIY Poptart Kit,” “Backyard BBQ Kit,” and “DIY Nacho Kit.” You know what else is essential? Prime rib. (Not a joke. Prime rib is LIFE). Bennett’s Kitchen Bar Market (open for dine-in on their patio) is offering a “Prime Rib Dinner” for $25 on weekends! Pair it with a bottle of wine or beer from their wide selection and you've got yourself a great night in. Also essential is chicken. Land Ocean’s Folsom locale is offering a “Rotisserie Chicken Dinner for Two” for $29. Included is your choice of two sides and one salad, and we (highly) recommend adding on a bottle of wine or beer. 300 Palladio Parkway, Folsom, 916-378-4660; 238 Gibson Drive, Roseville, 916-727-6321,; 1595 Eureka Road, Roseville, 916-750-5150,; 1151 Galleria Boulevard, Roseville, 916-407-5640, 2720 East Bidwell Street, Folsom, 916-983-7000,

Flower Farm Café photo by Sarah Bowler


F is for Flowers. OK, we actually mean it’s for delicious food from a flower farm, but what’s not to love? The Flower Farm Café is offering wine-paired dinners every Sunday that come complete with your choice of two entrées, a Casque-paired wine, along with optional dessert, bagged oranges, and flowers for your table. (I’m crying, you guys. How beautiful is this?)  Note: Meals are to go and must be pre-ordered; get in quick, as weekly menu supplies are limited! 9280 Horseshoe Bar Road, Loomis, 916-652-5661,

Sunset photo by Leslie Wells Photography


G is for Glorious Sunsets. Red sky at night: shepherd’s delight. Endless days of sunny weather mean endless nights of beautiful sunsets. Get out and take in the gorgeous sky at Mather Regional Park, the El Dorado Hills Town Center, Boulder Ridge Park in Rocklin, and Folsom Lake.

Cascade Canal Trail in Nevada City photo by Chason Wainwright.


H is for Hikes. Actually: let’s call them jaunts or “breathers,” because we’re not at all saying you should be outside for any extended period of time. Before you set off on a jaunt, check your local state park listings for the current closure status, as you may not be able to park at your favorite trailhead. But in the meantime, while you’re practicing social distancing, get some vitamin D and take a short walk on one of the many great trails in our area, or take the dog to your neighborhood park and let some sunshine in.

I is for Ice Cream. In summer, “i” is the best letter of the alphabet. It’s VERY hot outside, and no one’s counting calories right now (if you are, please stop. You’re making the rest of us look bad). Grab a pint of ice cream from Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream (favorite flavors include Black Raspberry Chunk or Mint with Oreo). Purchase all the pints and make your own tasting flight. Note: Ice cream is currently available for takeout or curbside delivery. 1011 East Bidwell Street, Suite 123, Folsom, 916-597-2947,

Argo's Caffe; Photo by Megan Wiskus


J is for Java. Whether you call it coffee, bean juice, rocket fuel, lifeblood, or java, let’s face it: It’s the key to our sanity. Fourscore Coffee is open for takeout every day, but they’ll also deliver on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday mornings! Argos Caffe is keeping you caffeinated Monday thru Friday with online advance ordering for curbside pickup via their website or delivery via DoorDash (Argos Coffee). Totem Coffee is open for to-go orders Wednesday thru Monday. The Pour Choice is open for to-go orders, too (order online or at the door and pick up on their picturesque patio). Foxwood Coffee is offering call in/curbside pickup service and limited dining. 325 Lincoln Street, Roseville, 916-390-0367,; 195 Blue Ravine Road, Suite 100, Folsom, 916-293-8256,; 312 Main Street, Suite 104, Placerville, 530-903-3280,; 177 Sacramento Street, Auburn, 530-820-3451,; 4068 Mother Lode Drive, Suite A, Shingle Springs, 530-387-7445,

Kale photo © -


K is for Kale. Don’t forget your leafy greens and fresh fruits! Farmers’ markets are still an essential part of our day-to-day lives and with some extra precautions you can still get your fill of fresh fruits and vegetables this summer. Check online for times and status updates of your favorite local market.,,,

Bacchus House Wine Bar & Bistro; photo courtesy of Bacchus House Wine Bar & Bistro


L is for Libations. What’s summer without something to sip on? Bacchus House Wine Bar & Bistro is serving up sweet sips a plenty. Try their White Linen (Hendricks Gin, St. Germain, sliced cucumber, Sugar in the Raw, and freshly squeezed lemon juice) or Aphrodite (raspberry vodka, Chambord, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and a raspberry garnish). These cocktails—and more(!)—are available for purchase with any to-go food order. Sienna (now open for dining in) is offering “Cocktails for Two” for $12 with your curbside takeout orders; choose from an Old-Fashioned made with Knob Creek Bourbon; a Jalapeño Pineapple Margarita made with Tres Generaciones Tequila, or a Cosmopolitan with Effen Vodka. 1004 East Bidwell Street, Suite 100, Folsom, 916-984-7500,; 1480 Eureka Road, Roseville, 916-771-4700; 3909 Park Drive, El Dorado Hills, 916-941-9694,

M is for Mules. The kind of kick that feels good and doesn’t hurt. The Independent's Moscow Mule with Russian vodka, house-made ginger beer, fresh lime, and house-made ginger syrup is available for to-go orders, along with their great selection of wine, beers, and delectable cuisine. Curbside pickup is available upon request. 629 Main Street, Placerville, 530-344-7645,

N is for Nori. Used chiefly in Japanese cuisine as an ingredient to wrap rolls of sushi, “nori” is the edible seaweed that holds all the goodness inside. And we can’t think of a lighter, more refreshing summer bite than sushi! Aji Japanese Bistro is offering takeout and curbside with a limited menu, and there’s so much great food to choose from. Try their Eggplant Sushi Roll (grilled eggplant, tempura asparagus, avocado, and cucumber) or the Aji Maki Roll (fried tempura shrimp, spicy tuna, cream cheese, and jalapeños). Also, they do tacos! Rainbow poke tacos, even. 4361 Town Center Boulevard, Suite 111, El Dorado Hills, 916-941-9181,

Thai Noodle Express; photo by Dante Fontana


O is for Oodles of Noodles. Thai Paradise offers curbside pickup of takeout orders for lunch and dinner and all the noodles you can possibly wish for. Try their spicy Drunken Noodles (pan-fried flat rice noodles, green beans, onions, snow peas, red bell peppers, jalapeños, tomatoes, bean sprouts, green beans, basil, and garlic chili sauce) or Silver Noodles (pan-fried bean thread noodles with your pick of protein, egg, onions, baby corn, snow peas, black and white mushrooms, bean sprouts, and special sauce). There’s no law against eating ramen in the summer and nor should there, because Thai Noodle Express will make your ramen dreams come true. There’s Tonkatsu Shoyu Ramen in your future—I can see it in my crystal ball! 4361 Town Center Boulevard, Suite 110, El Dorado Hills, 916-939-0389,, 2770 East Bidwell Street, Folsom, 916- 984-8988,; 374 Main Street, Placerville, 530-289-8919,

Wally's Pizza Bar; photo by Ray Burgess


P is for Pizza. So much delicious pizza! Wally’s Pizza Bar is open for delivery or pickup—simply place your order online. The beloved Basecamp (pepperoni, Italian sausage, roasted peppers and onions, Wally’s four cheese blend, and portabella mushrooms) is a must-try. Rosati’s Authentic Chicago Pizza is offering a free Rosati Roll (toilet roll) with every pickup or curbside order while supplies last. How’s that for enterprising? Their deep dish is divine, along with the Rosati’s Monster (gourmet Italian sausage, meatballs, pepperoni, Canadian bacon, onions, black and green olives, mushrooms, and green peppers with tomato and bacon on top of a thin crust with a rolled edge). 4079 Cameron Park Drive, Cameron Park, 530-677-5205,; 5140 Foothills Boulevard, Suite 110, Roseville, 916-797-7492,

Fat's Asia Bistro photo by Rachel Valley.


Q is for Quarantine Deliciousness. Fat’s Asia Bistro is open for takeout or curbside delivery and ready to distract you from the outside world with delicious menu items like their Honey Walnut Shrimp, Genghis Khan Beef, Pork Shu Mei, Chicken Chow Mein, and Mongolian Beef. Cocktails are available with your to-go orders, too—including $6 Mai Tais on Mai Tai Monday. 1500 Eureka Road, Roseville, 916-787-3287; 2585 Iron Point Road, Folsom, 916-983-1133,

R is for Random Acts of Kindness. Find out what your local shelters, food banks, and nonprofits need during the shutdowns and donate directly. Sew masks for first responders or donate sewing supplies to any groups you know who are making masks in bulk. Arrange a lawn visit with relatives who are lonely or in need—or stand outside their window with signs (Love Actually style), deliver groceries to someone you know is in need or has lost their job, write letters to your friends, reach out and give to those around you, and maintain your own sense of community in your own unique way.

Thai Paradise; photo by Dante Fontana


S is for Salads. Our favorite local restaurants put summer on a plate—and they’re anything but basic. Try Heyday Café for a Burrata Caprese Salad (heirloom tomatoes, fresh burrata mozzarella, basil, mixed greens, and a balsamic reduction), Vaiano Trattoria for a divine Insalata di Pere (Pear) con Gorgonzola (sliced pears and crumbled gorgonzola cheese over baby greens, tossed with a toasted walnut vinaigrette), go classic with La Provence Restaurant & Terrace’s Shrimp Louis (bay shrimp, greens, hard-boiled egg, cucumber, avocado, and Louis dressing), or get a taste of Thailand with Thai Paradise’s Som Tum (shredded green papaya with tomatoes, chopped peanuts, and lettuce in a spicy-sweet-tangy dressing). 325 Main Street, Placerville, 530-626-9700,; 7160 Douglas Boulevard, Granite Bay, 916-780-0888,; 110 Diamond Creek Place, Roseville, 916-789-2002,; 4361 Town Center Boulevard, Suite 110, El Dorado Hills, 916-939-0389,, 2770 East Bidwell Street, Folsom, 916- 984-8988,

Mezcalito Oaxacan Cuisine; photo by Dante Fontana


T is for Tacos. Mezcalito Oaxacan Cuisine’s Tacos de Rajas (roasted poblano peppers, caramelized onions, nopal, queso asado, pico, sour cream, avocado, and guajillo sauce) and the Grilled Fish Tacos (cabbage, mango, avocado, pico, jalapeño aioli, and cilantro) can't be missed. Oh, and don’t forget to try their Mezcal ice cream (yep, tequila and ice cream, together at last). Amerikan Ichi of Placerville is open for curbside pickup. Though they regularly provide sushi and Asian fusion cuisine, they’re also blessing us with Taco Tuesdays (three seasoned salmon tacos for $5). Get on this train ASAP. 187 Blue Ravine Road, Suite 160, Folsom, 916-351-0900; 5065 Pacific Street, Rocklin, 916-701-4772,; 1234 Broadway, Placerville, 530-621-2100,

SUP DOG Adventure; Photo by Nick Clark


U is for Unbelievable Abs. You can still get your summer bod remotely—and at local parks and waterways. Yes, abs of steel are still within reach! Check Radiant Yoga’s Insta page (@radiantyogaedh) for upcoming community classes at Stonebriar Park in El Dorado Hills (donation proceeds benefit the Nor Cal COVID-19 Response Fund). More of a home “body”? Join Yoga Moves Us on Instagram Live (@yogamovesus) for free streaming classes in a variety of styles. SUP DOG Adventure, part of Folsom’s Spotted Dog Yoga, is offering stand-up paddle boarding mini-adventures all summer long at locales like Folsom Lake, Lake Clementine, and Jenkinson Lake. Children 13-17 are welcome to join (if accompanied by an adult) and all gear is included.,,

Skinner Vineyards


V is for Virtual Tastings. How about a virtual wine or beer tasting? No designated driver needed! Many wineries in the Clarksburg Wine Growers & Vintners group hold tastings each week from the comfort of your crib. The El Dorado Winery Association and Russ Reyes of Kilt & Cork offer virtual tastings with a different El Dorado winery every week, and New Glory Craft Brewery has been hosts via Instagram Live. Cheers to that!,,,

Wise Villa Winery


W is for Wine. Although most tasting rooms may be closed, a large number of wineries in the region are open for pickups and deliveries. Help keep them (and you) afloat during the summer: Check to see if your favorite winery is offering drive-up or online orders (some may even offer free or deeply discounted shipping). Note: As restrictions ease, many wineries, including Wise Villa Winery, are reopening; and while traditional tastings aren’t allowed, customers can have a flight, glass, or bottle of wine—if served with a meal—while soaking in the surrounding scenery.,,,,

Out of Bounds Folsom Biergarten Brewery Beer Craft Kitchen photo by Barbara Brooks Photography


X is for Xcellent Local Beer. Don’t let your appetite for craft beer suffer this summer, or your beloved breweries for that matter—let them quench your thirst on the go or in-person (some are starting to reopen). Check online to see if your favorite one is taking to-go orders (some locations may also offer growler refills), virtual tastings, or other creative events.

Y is for Yard Beautification. With warm weather, sunny skies, and not a lot of places to go, home is where the heart (and fun!) is this season. If your yard isn’t summer-ready, fret not: Local nurseries are here to help make your garden dreams come true. From blooming flowers to tomatoes, peppers, and other produce, the sky’s the limit when it comes to planting. Many places are open for in-store shopping, along with offering curbside pickup. Favorites include Bushnell Gardens Home & Gift, Green Acres Nursery & Supply (various locations), and El Dorado Nursery. 5255 Douglas Boulevard, Granite Bay, 916-791-4199,;; 3931 Durock Road, Suite C, Shingle Springs, 530-676-6556,
Z is for Zoom Crafting. Lots of businesses have gotten creative and are switching to Zoom for online meetups. Check your favorite craft store—they might already have something going on! Placerville’s Lofty Lou’s has something happening almost every day, including a Zoom schedule for knit-alongs, classes, and more. And if you’re a sewer without a sewing machine who’s looking to help make masks, reach out to Vacuum & Sewing World—they have plenty of sewing machines in stock for purchase (pickup is by appointment only). Plus, all machines come with a lifetime of free lessons! And while supplies last, they’re providing free elastic to all who are helping the community by making masks. 263 Main Street, Placerville, 530-642-2270,; 6726 Stanford Ranch Road, Suite 3, Roseville, 916-747-3968; 637 East Bidwell Street, Folsom, 916-474-9708, 

By Sharon Penny

Editor’s Note: This piece was written during the shelter-in-place mandate. Please check each business’ respective website for current hours and reopening updates.