One of the rewards of daylight saving time is the annual return of Picnic in the Park, when the Davis Farmers Market extends its Wednesday hours, transforming into a festival of food, music and fun.
Picnic in the Park returns on Wednesday, March 13, at Central Park, 301 C St., 4:30 p.m. to sunset. The sunset closure has vendors packing up as early as 8:35 p.m. during longer summer days, and as early as 7 p.m. in October.
At Picnic in the Park, visitors can shop the farmers market, buy dinner at the food faire, visit Soroptimist International of Davis’ beer and wine garden, and entertain youngsters. Children’s entertainment includes the bicycle-powered carousel, two playgrounds, bounce houses, face painting, a petting farm by All About a Farm, and balloon creations by Dilly Dally the Clown. Davis Enterprise readers have repeatedly voted the market as the best place in Yolo County to take an out-of-towner, and the best community event.
The Lisa Phenix & Steve Wall will open the season with their folk and Americana sounds. The Davis Food Co-op sponsors live music each week, through Oct. 30. Local bands bring a wide variety of music to the event, including bluegrass, Americana, rock ’n’ roll, folk, blues, Dixieland, Big Band, rockabilly, dance music, R&B, world music, hip-hop and more, beginning at 5 p.m. and continuing until sunset.
Food, drink and sweets vendors offer picnickers a wide array of specialties. Vendors include Zuma Poke, The Buckhorn, East-West Gourmet, Three Ladies Café, The Hotdogger, Kathmandu Kitchen, Montoya’s Tamales, Water Pig, Raja’s Tandoor, Village Bakery pizza, Upper Crust Bakery, Davis Bread and Desserts, Ciocolat and Kettlepop. Beverage retailers include Bare Juices, Botanik organic tea drinks, Davis Food Co-op kombucha and treats. The nonprofit Purple Tree Café’s coffee and treats benefits young adults with special needs.
Members of Soroptimist International of Davis offer three tap handles of Sudwerk beer, as well as a red and white wine hand-selected from three Yolo County wineries: Berryessa Gap, Heringer Estates and Matchbook. All profits go toward its mission to improve the lives of women and girls through programs leading to social and economic empowerment. It also supports the Davis Farm to School, a program of the Davis Farmers Market.
Patrons using the Davis Farmers Market’s tables (with the red-checkered tablecloths) are encouraged to do so while enjoying food and beverages purchased at the market. The tables seat eight to allow sharing, and placemats are provided. The spring market will be packed with organic and conventional produce, apple juice, olive oil, honey and flowers. Occasional craft booths are at the north end of the pavilion.
The Saturday market continues year-round from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Central Park. From November through early March, Wednesday hours are 3 to 6 p.m. There are three other area partner markets coordinated by the Davis Farmers Market: the UC Davis Farmers Market, Wednesdays, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., spring and fall quarters; the Sutter Davis Farmers Market, Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., May through October; and the new Sutter Medical Center Farmers Market in Sacramento, Thursdays, 4 to 7:30 p.m., year-round.
March 13: Lisa Phenix & Steve Wall (folk, Americana)
March 20: Putah Creek Crawdads (bluegrass)
March 27: Blue Blazes (rockabilly blues)
April 3: Sticky Vikki & The Pinecones (rockabilly)
April 10: The Sharks (’60s rock)
April 17: Odd Man Out (’60s and ’70s rock)
April 24: The Notorious Shank Brothers (bluegrass)
May 1: Tha Dirt Feelin’ (hip-hop, rock)
May 8: Papa Hip (soul, blues, jazz, rock)
May 15: Kindred Spirits (folk rock)
May 22: Crazy Chester (’60s and ’70s rock)
May 29: Hardwater (pop, rock, folk, blues)
June 5: High Strung (bluegrass)
June 12: Red Dog Ash (bluegrass)
June 19: The New Harmony Jazz Band (jazz)
June 26: According to Bazooka (indie, folk, pop)
July 3: Frankie & The Fabletones (rock ’n’ roll oldies)
July 10: Julie and the Jukes (classic blues)
July 17: Acoustic S&M (folk, rock)
July 24: Blues Dues American Roots (acoustic Americana)
July 31: Guitar Mac & His Blues Express (blues)
Aug. 7: Cold Shot (dance party)
Aug. 14: The Hey-Nows (folk rock, Americana)
Aug. 21: North Country Blue (bluegrass)
Aug. 28: The Regal Beezers (jazz standards)
Sept. 4: The Undulations (swing & Dixieland)
Sept. 11: Ron Goldberg Quartet (folk rock)
Sept. 18: Jenny Lynn and her Real Gone Daddies (rockabilly)
Sept. 25: It’s About Time (big band, swing)
Oct. 2: Davis Klezmer Orchestra (folk)
Oct. 9: Walkin’ the Dawg Band (rock ’n’ roll)
Oct. 16: Que Bossa (Samba)
Oct. 23: Adam Block (blues, jazz, country)
Oct. 30: Matt & George and their Pleasant Valley Boys (bluegrass)