(Northern) California Parkist

The dogs and I are avid park visitors. Join us as we document our wanderings, mostly in northern California. We visit all jurisdictions -- United States National Parks, State Parks, County, Regional and City Parks -- we love open spaces!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

City of Sonoma: The Plaza

We sat by the duck pond while the Tuesday Night Market was in full swing.  This is one of Sonoma's most popular events for six months of the year and it serves to bring all the living generations together at once.  Every week we see tiny babies and we see fragile elders and all the ages in between.  The teenagers are busy with their friends and the pre-teens are learning the skills of looking cool in a safe place - their parents are just on the other side of the block.  For those of us who actually live in Sonoma this is one of the community activities that makes us feel that we belong.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

California State Parks: Casa Grande Servants' Quarters (Sonoma)

General Mariano Vallejo and his family lived in what is now downtown Sonoma for many years before their new home, Lachryma Montis was built at the foot of the mountain.  They moved in 1851 or so, and their original home, Casa Grande, was destroyed by fire in 1867.  All that is left is shown here, the Indian servants' quarters.  It almost fronts Spain Street and is totally visible without any tourist admission fees, you just walk up to the building from the sidewalk.  There is a cheese shop on the left hand side and the Toscano Hotel, also free and owned by California State Parks, on the right. Across the street is Sonoma Plaza where the General used to drill and parade his troops.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

City of Sonoma: The Plaza

One of the really special times in the life of the community of Sonoma is the weekly farmers market which is held on The Plaza.  Each Tuesday from May to November, more or less, venders bring their foods and veggies and wares and the town gathers for snacks and suppers, music and shopping.  It's an intergenerational event with dancing children being corralled by their parents and watched by their grandparents.  It's also extremely popular as scents of multi-ethnic foods waft from plates carried to grassy areas and benches.