Start off the chilly day with hot coffee or tea from The Good Earth Coffee & Tea House in Oroville to warm you up from the inside out. With organic coffees and teas, locally made pastries, and monthly drink specials, there’s a warm drink for everyone to enjoy.
After coffee, spend the day exploring the various historical museums in Oroville. Start with Bolt's Antique Tool Museum , home to over 13,000 tools dating back to the 1820s and the only location of its kind in the world. The friendly and knowledgeable volunteer docents will be happy to answer any question as you explore the displays.
The Butte County Historical Museum focuses on the people of the county and tells the stories of the lives of people in Butte County from the early mining days to the present time, including the gold mining era, the filming of the 1940s “Robin Hood,” and native populations. Open Fridays 9am – noon, and Saturdays 11am to 3pm.
For something really warm, check out the glassblowing studio at Orient & Flume in Chico. A producer of fine art glass in Chico, the studio has been capturing nature’s inspiration in iridescent and crystal clear glass using both traditional and contemporary motifs since 1972. The gallery is open Monday through Saturday from 10am to 5pm, and you can get a closer look at how it’s all made Monday through Friday from 10am – 2pm through December 21st as the artists blow glass.
For dinner, stop by Momona in Chico for a hot bowl of ramen. There, you can customize ramen or rice bowls, savor Hawaiian bao, and enjoy other Japanese-, Hawaiian-, and Taiwan-inspired items. You won’t want to have a single sip or bite of it to go to waste!
After dinner, warm your spirits with some live performances at El Rey Theater . The historic landmark is California’s oldest cinema theater and located in the heart of downtown Chico. Throughout the month, you can enjoy a variety of music, comedy, or dance performed at El Rey, so make sure to check out the events calendar to see what’s happening!
For those looking to keep the night going, the newly re-opened (same name, new location and owner) Bill's Towne Lounge is a fun place for a drink. Best described as a swanky dive bar, the Town Lounge serves up craft beers and cocktails from Chico’s longest bar counter as well as southern-inspired food from its full kitchen.
For the coffee purists, the Blackbird Cafe in Chico is the right place to get a simple cup of java. Offering drip coffee, tea, kombucha, and vegan pastries, Blackbird is also a bookstore and art gallery, so cozy up with your coffee, a tasty treat, and a new book.
Next, spend a few hours at Chico’s Gateway Science Museum , which focuses on the exploration of science and natural history in the Butte County region and beyond. Stay warm while you enjoy Zoom Into Nano, a hands-on interactive exhibition focusing on how scientists see and make things that are too small to see, and other interesting exhibits. Open Wednesday through Sunday from noon to 5pm.
If you’re interested in learning more about Chico, head on over to the Chico History Museum . Featuring exhibits on the “Evolving Chinese Temple” and “Chico Through Time,” this regional history museum will help you become a Chico expert! Open Thursday to Sunday, 11am to 4pm.
Willing to brave the cold? Head out to the Chico Air Museum at the Chico Municipal Airport to get up close and personal with jet- and propeller-driven aircraft in their Outdoor Museum. At their Indoor Museum, you can explore interesting artifacts, pictures, and historic displays as you warm up. Open Thursday through Sunday from 10am to 3pm.
After hanging out with aircrafts outside, you’ll want to head inside again for something warm, so check out Cocodine for authentic Thai food. The warm curries and grilled dishes will be sure to hit the spot on a cold evening.
End the night with a show at the Blue Room Theater , a local non-profit theater company with performances in a small and intimate venue in Chico. From December 6 – 22, you can catch a show of “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley,” a comic sequel to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice with plenty of laughs and Christmas cheer.
If you’re not ready for the night to end and are looking for a nightcap, Argus Bar + Patio is a popular cocktail bar in Downtown Chico. They make amazing Gin Rickeys and mojitos as well as a wide variety of others. With food trucks on the weekends and frequent live music guests, Argus Bar + Patio is the place to savor a drink and stay warm inside while it’s cold outside.