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Five Great Urban Walks, Runs & Bike Rides in Midtown

Sacramento is known for being in close proximity to endless outdoor activities in the Sacramento region and also in areas like Folsom, Auburn, and Davis. Gorgeous walks right along the river, challenging hikes with impressive views and bike rides for miles are often only a 30-minute drive away. But there are also plenty of options in Midtown that require no driving at all! To make it easy, we have compiled a list of five fun and unique runs, walks and bike rides right in our very own Midtown backyard.

From a 5k run that features five of our Midtown parks, to a curated walk that highlights our favorite Midtown murals, to an urban plant walk…we’ve got you covered. You’ll be hitting your step goal in no time at all!

Midtown Parks 5k Challenge

Training for a marathon? We have developed a 5k route that connects five of our beloved Midtown parks: Marshall Park, Sutter’s Fort, Winn Park, Truitt Bark Park and Fremont Park. Plus, if you really want to challenge yourself, try your hand at our 5k challenge, where you must complete 20 reps of a certain exercise at each park! Check out the map below to do it yourself.

Bonus: Did you know that Fremont Park, Winn Park, and Marshall Park all have a paved path around the exterior of each park? It’s perfect for avid runners looking for an easy place to run every day! Sutter’s Fort also has an interior and exterior decomposed granite path that can be utilized for running or walking alike.

Midtown Mural Walk

One of the best ways to soak up some Midtown culture is by walking around the grid to check out all of our amazing murals. Check out this self-guided Midtown mural walking tour created using the Wide Opens Walls map feature. You can customize your tour by deleting stops or adding additional ones. Once you add it to the tour, it will show on the tour feature that allows you to drag and drop locations, creating the route that suits you. Plus, you can click mural details to learn about each mural you check out.

Next Sunday morning, grab a coffee, a friend and your camera to check out our district’s murals, from the myriad of muralists who have made their mark on the Sacramento art scene in Midtown! Don’t forgot to grab some instagrammable shots and tag us at @exploremidtown.

         

Midtown Streetcar Tour

Midtown is famous for having an eclectic mix of modern and historic buildings. We’re calling all the history and architecture nerds that are interested in the story behind the buildings that have been standing in Midtown for decades, specifically along J Street. This walking tour was designed by Sacramento Heritage, Inc.

150 years of changing transportation patterns and architectural styles give J Street and 28th Street a unique and eclectic character. A single block contains homes, restaurants, retail stores and services. This makes J Street one of the city’s most walkable, and one of its most active pedestrian environments. Architectural styles found along J Street include Italianate, Queen Anne, Stick, Craftsman, Prairie, Colonial Revival, Mission Revival, Art Deco and International Style several times during the building’s life. Download the Sac Heritage Walking tour app on your phone to find several tours including the Midtown Streetcar Walking Tour or download our PDF. The tour explains the history behind each stop of the 29 locations.

             

Photo provided by Architectural Photographer Donald Cox

Bonus: History nerds will be excited to know that Donald Cox has spent many years researching and writing the histories of the Vanishing Victorian buildings in Sacramento. He and his wife, Paula Bohosian wrote the Arcadia book for Boulevard Park. Get a copy of their book here to find a compendium of the most interesting architectural homes in Sacramento!

Bike Ride in Midtown

If biking is how you prefer to get around, then look no further than Midtown. The neighborhood features miles of protected bike lanes, virtually no hills, and it’s location near the American River Parkway makes Midtown especially suited to bikers. Check out the ride below or create your own route with the map found HERE featuring all of the bike lanes in the central city.

If your ride is on a Saturday morning don’t forget to stop by the Midtown Farmers Market which features free bike valet in the summer months provided by the Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates.

If you want a route to get started, try this 30-minute ride that begins at Fremont Park and zig zags for five miles past five serene parks and through three of Midtown’s restaurant districts. Finish up at with a cold beer at At Ease Brewing or a coffee treat from The Mill. More adventurous riders can continue north on 18th Street to catch the Sacramento Northern Bikeway into the river parkway for plenty more riding options.

 

 

Urban Plant Walk

Start your walk at the State Indian Museum and experience a healing urban plant walk! Sage LaPena, a medical herbalist at Sacramento Native American Health Center (SNAHC), kindly gave us some knowledgeable tips to share about plant identification!

(any tips, advice you can drop about experiencing an urban plant walk, what is herbalism and why it is important)

Check out upcoming events for SNAHC to sign up for a future urban plant walk here! In the meantime, below are three common urban plants found in Midtown that we challenge you to find on your walk at and nearby the State Indian Museum and learn more on each of their healing purposes.

(are there 3 urban plants commonly found in Midtown and what their healing purpose is)

Do you know of any other hikes, walks, runs or bike rides that you love to do in Midtown?! Message us on any of our social channels @exploremidtown and let us know. Remember to also snap your experience doing any of the walks, runs, or bike rides above and #ExploreMidtown or tag us @exploremidtown for a chance to be featured!

Celebrate Halloween in Midtown!

Bewitching brews, a boo bash, a vampire ball and the annual Midtown Sutter Halloween Festival and Pooch Parade are all taking place in Midtown Sacramento this October, distinguishing Midtown as a Halloween hotspot for you, your friends, and your pets to have a ghoulishly good time.   

Check out our list of must-attend October events in Midtown to celebrate your favorite scary month and scroll down to enter your pup into the pooch parade and win great prizes.  

Halloween Festival & Pooch Parade
Saturday, October 29, 12 PM
Marshall Park 

Did someone say happy HOWLween? This year, make sure your favorite four-footed friends get to indulge in some Halloween festivities! The restaurants of Midtown Sutter have joined forces once again to present the Midtown Halloween Festival & Pooch Parade on Saturday, October 29 from 12 – 3 pm at James Marshall Park. 

Presented by Midtown Sutter restaurants –including Barwest, Blue Cue, Café Bernardo, Centro Cocina Mexicana, Four Palms, Harlow’s, INK Eats & Drinks, Paragary’s Midtown, Red Rabbit Kitchen & Bar, and Tea Bar & Fusion Café – the canine-friendly event is highlighted by a much-anticipated “pooch parade” scheduled to take place at 2 p.m.  

Furry friends will strut and stroll while competing in an always-entertaining costume contest that will include prizes, like gift cards to Sutter Midtown District restaurants and Midtown Love swag, for the winning pooches.  

Before the highly anticipated parade of costumed pooches, there will be plenty of family-friendly outdoor activities such as live music presented by Harlow’s, DIY plant jars presented by Paragary’s, arts & crafts from Café Bernardo and Four Palms, a magician and puppet show presented by B Street Theatre, pumpkin bowling brought to you by Blue Cue, a face painter brought by Ink Eats and Drinks, lawn games like Giant Jenga from Barwest, a fun photo-booth from Tea Bar, dog treat guessing game from Centro, and even a fabulous bounce house from Red Rabbit! 

After a spirited day of Halloween fun with your pets, make sure to stop by the many eateries across the street from the park. It is Trick and TREAT season, after all! Check out some of our favorite places here or read our blog about Midtown Sutter.  

Make sure to register your pooch in advance here: https://exploremidtown.org/pooch-parade/ 

 

Harvest Festival
Saturday, October 8, 1 p.m.
Sacramento Natural Foods Co-Op

The community is invited to enjoy an afternoon of live music with ACME Soundtracks plus Gabe Nelson and Hannah Lingrell, and Hans Eberbach.  Plus, guests will enjoy activities for the whole family including a free photo booth, a vintage clothing market, wine tasting, food sampling, and local community groups, too. For more, visit www.sac.coop. 

Paint Nite: The Haunted Mansion
Saturday, October 8, 12:15 p.m.
Streets Pub and Grub  

It’s time to plan a cool yet creative night in Midtown where guests can paint a creepy haunted mansion to get into the Halloween spirit. Starting with a blank canvas and ending with a completed masterpiece, participants enjoy wine, tasty snacks, and upbeat tunes. To register visit Paint Nite Registration 

HarryWeen
Thursday, October 27 at 7:30 p.m.
The Starlet Room at Harlow’s 

What do you get when you combine Harry Styles and Halloween? HarryWeen of course. A fun way to kick-off Halloween weekend is by dancing the night away in the Starlet Room at Harlow’s to the sounds of Harry Styles. For more, visit www.harlows.com/events. 

Halloween Bar Crawl
Saturday, October 29, beginning at 4 p.m.  

Interested adults are encouraged to dress up in their funniest, cutest, or scariest Halloween costume for the 5th Annual Halloween Bar Crawl featuring several Midtown locations that include Zebra Club, Henry’s Lounge, Old Tavern, Streets Pub, and Tropics Ale House. Each ticket includes two free drinks/shots and exclusive drinks and food specials plus an entry to a coveted costume contest.  For more, visit www.crawlwith.us/sacramento/halloween. 

Halloween Boo Bash
Saturday, October 29, 8 p.m.
Self Designs Art Gallery  

Visit Self Designs Art Gallery to experience an art gallery that transports guests to another dimension with creative sights and sounds. Attendees are welcome to participate in their Paint for Pride in the upstairs glow room.  Plus, there will be live body painting demonstrations by local artists and a two-level tour of the glowing atmosphere with amazing music, awesome projector visuals and complimentary party treats to fill Boo Bags. For more, visit www.selfdesignsartgallery.com. 

Shannon McCabe’s Vampire Ball
Saturday, October 29 at 8 p.m.
Harlow’s 

Calling all vampire lovers…Harlow’s annual Vampire Ball returns this year as they celebrate 14 years of all things Anne Rice, a famous author of gothic fiction and all the vampires chronicled through the history. For more, visit www.harlows.com/events 

Now that you’ve got your calendar booked this month, are you ready to have a fangtastic Halloween?! Time to dust off your scariest, funniest, or cutest costume and get ready to have a memorable Midtown experience for Halloween this year. Remember to #ExploreMidtown or tag us on social media for a chance to be featured!