Downtown

 

Farmers Market

Barbecued ribs, freshly picked produce, arts and crafts, and live entertainment ...it's San Luis Obispo's lively Farmers' Market! Held every Thursday night, Farmers' Market is a street fair and produce market. No dogs allowed, City Ordinance. Locals and visitors alike can shop for the county's freshest produce and flowers, devour delicious ribs and sandwiches, browse local shops open late, and enjoy assortments of live entertainment. Recognized as a leader of such activities in California, Farmers' Market is held on six downtown blocks of Higuera Street, between Osos and Nipomo streets. The area is closed to all through traffic to make room for this fabulous event. City Ordinance prohibits dogs from attending. Please leave your four legged friends at home. Look out for a six-foot bear — that's mascot "Downtown Brown" giving out hugs and paw shakes to Market-goers.

Website http://www.downtownslo.com/farmers.html

The purpose of Thursday Night Promotions is to promote business in the downtown core. The event is organized by, administered by, and paid for by the Downtown Association. The Downtown Association is an advisory body to the City Council and is created and operated under state and local laws. The Downtown Association administers Thursday Night promotions in order to:

  • create a positive image of Downtown San Luis Obispo
  • expose community members to retail stores and services offered Downtown
  • generate foot traffic on Thursday nights
  • provide a forum for community activities
  • maintain the Downtown as the center of retail, social, and civic activities enhance the community as a whole


Where is it held? Farmers' Market is held on Higuera Street in downtown San Luis Obispo, between Osos and Nipomo Streets. Watch for special activities on Garden Street too. Where can I park? Try the municipal garages located at Palm and Morro streets and Marsh and Chorro streets, where the first 60 minutes are free. Overhead clearance is 8' feet. Several small City-run parking lots are also nearby. You can park free on side streets. But don't park on the street after 5:30 p.m. anywhere you see "No Parking" notices attached to parking meters, or in private parking lots.

When is Farmers' Market? Farmers' Market takes place every Thursday (except Thanksgiving Day or if it's raining). Barbecues and entertainment begin at 6:00 p.m. All activities close at 9 p.m

Farmers' Market involves more than 120 vendors. Farmers park their trucks in the center of the street and restaurateurs wheel out massive barbecue pits for grilling ribs, chicken, sausages, tri-tip and even barbecued calzones under the evening sky. There are various food booths that offer everything from pizza-by-the-slice to warm-from-the-oven cookies.

You'll also find freshly harvested fruits and vegetables (all delicious and many exotic), bouquets of garden-grown flowers, hand-pressed cider and other seasonal treats.

The Downtown Association, established in 1975 to address the needs of Downtown Merchants as a whole, is an advisory body to the City Council funded by sales tax proceeds from its district. While not an actual department of the City, as a government agency it follows the same guidelines as any public entity. All meetings are open to the public and with meeting notices posted at City Hall. Downtown Association boundaries are semi-irregular but form a rectangle around a Downtown core bordered by Santa Rosa, Palm, Nipomo and Pacific Streets. Nearly 600 businesses are licensed within this district. (See map elsewhere on this website).

Link to the City of San Luis Obispo web site: www.slocity.org

Link to the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce web site: www.slochamber.org

Email for the San Luis Obispo County Journal: slojournal@fix.net

Old SLO Trolley
Trolley service is provided from both of the parking structures and at convenient locations within the downtown core. The fare is 25cents. Hours of operation are:

Thursday

3:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Friday & Saturday

12:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Sunday

12:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Food and Produce

Does the tantalizing scent of prepared bar-b-que ribs, or the cornucopia of color of freshly picked produce delight your senses? Then Thursday Night Promotions-Farmers Market is the place for you to be from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. every Thursday. With more than 120 vendors providing everything from ribs, sausage, tri-tip, fresh flowers, organic produce and seasonal treats within walking distance of our historic mission. It's an amazing place to people watch, shop, and enjoy an event that has the distinction of being one of the greatest weekly events of California.

Table and Chair Seating

After a three-month hiatus, table and chair seating is once again available at Farmers' Market. Located on the south corner of Broad and Higuera streets, Market goers can enjoy their “market meal” in comfortable chairs and spacious tables.

ASAP Movers, an established local moving company, is sponsoring the table and chair section of the market on a weekly basis. ASAP Movers are professionals trained in all aspects of moving and packing. Staff will be on hand to discuss their services. Stress free moving along with outstanding service at a reasonable price.

Come to Thursday Night Promotions, Farmers' Market and enjoy table and chair seating. Seating is on a first come-first serve basis.

Farmers' Market FAQs

Q: When is Farmers' Market?

A: Farmers' Market takes place every Thursday (except Thanksgiving Day or if it's raining). Barbecues and entertainment begin at 6:00 p.m. All activities close at 9 p.m

Q: Where is it held?

A: Farmers' Market is held on Higuera Street in Downtown San Luis Obispo between Osos and Nipomo Streets. Watch for special activities at the intersections.

Q: Where can I park?

A: Try the municipal Parking structures located at Palm and Morro streets and Marsh and Chorro streets, where the first 60 minutes are free. Overhead clearance is 8' feet. Several small City-run parking lots are also nearby. You can park free on side streets. But don't park on the street after 5:30 p.m. anywhere you see "No Parking" notices attached to parking meters, or in private parking lots.

A: Ride your bike to Farmers' Market and park at the Bicycle Valet located on Morro Street adjacent to Farmers' Market. The Downtown Association is proud to protect our environment, encourage healthy lifestyles and reduce traffic congestion by hosting the SLO County Bicycle Coalition's www.slobikelane.org award winning Bike Valet at Farmers' every week. Bike Valet is like a coat check for bicycles. Simply ride to the market where a valet will give you a claim check tag and park your bike in a secure area during the duration of the event. Open from 6:00 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.

Q: Can I bring my dog to Farmers' Market with me?

A: City Ordinance prohibits dogs from attending. Please leave your four-legged friends at home.

MISSION SAN LUIS OBISPO DE TOLOSA

Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa is considered the city center of the historic Downtown District of San Luis Obispo. The historic landmark was founded in 1772, and has sculped much of the cities history. Mission Plaza surrounds the building, creating a venue for outdoor festivals, concerts, wine tastings, live music, and many other special events.

Website http://www.missionsanluisobispo.org/

FACTS ABOUT THE MISSION...

  • The fifth California mission founded by Father Junipero Serra, Sept. 1, 1772.
  • Named after Saint Louis, Bishop of Toulouse, France.
  • Present building built 1793-1794.
  • Front portico added: 1794, torn down in 1877, restored in 1933.
  • Wooden siding added in the late 1870's; removed between 1920 to 1934.

Join the locals in the beautiful Mission hall for a morning service any day of the week.

Sundays at 7:00AM, 9:00AM, 11:00AM, 6:00PM, and a Spanish service at 7:30PM.

Weekdays at 7:00AM and 12:10PM

Saturdays at 7:00AM and 5:30PM

DOWNTOWN AND THURSDAY NIGHT FARMERS MARKET

From Farmers' Markets to antiques and unique gift shops, San Luis Obispo County has big shopping experiences in a small, intimate setting. Farmers Markets and quaint antique stores can be found in almost every city on the Central Coast.

Website http://www.downtownslo.com/farmers.html

Wineries & Vineyards

San Luis Obispo

National acclaim has been bestowed upon the prize winning wines and premium vineyards in San Luis Obispo County. Over 80 wineries welcome visitors to sample prize-winning selections and current releases.

You know you are in the heart of wine country. Back country roads lined with vineyards, rolling hills, a light breeze, and blue, blue skies. A feeling of peace sets in. From the people who greet you, to the laid back setting of San Luis Obispo, an un-crowded, un-hurried and un-pretentious wine tasting getaway awaits.

Midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, the SLO (that's what we locals call it) wine region is comprised of three pristine viticulture areas: the Edna Valley, Arroyo Grande Valley and Avila Valley. Our small, mostly family-owned wineries are well known for their hand-crafted bottlings of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Syrah, Grenache, Viognier, Zinfandel and more.

The marine influence of the nearby Pacific Ocean provides a mild summer and warm fall, resulting in an unusually long growing season. Combined with the region's rocky volcanic soils, these growing conditions produce fruit with intense varietal character and complex flavors that are typically found in the world's greatest wine regions. The SLO life. Wine tasting with family and friends. Exploring the sidestreets and byways of our many small towns. Playing on white sandy beaches, savoring the outstanding cuisine of our local restaurants, or just hanging out. It's how we live. And you're welcome to join us.

Website http://www.slowine.com

Oceano Dunes

Oceano

The dunes in Grover Beach and Oceano are one of the few places where you can drive your vehicle on the sand. The dunes adjoin the Oso Flaco nature preserve with rare plants and animals.

Website http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=406

This off road area is among the most popular and unique of California State Parks. The 5 ½ miles of beach open for vehicle use and the sand dunes available for off highway motor vehicle recreation are attractions for visitors from throughout the United States.

Oceano Dunes is the only California State Park where vehicles may be driven on the beach. Passenger cars can easily drive on the northern portion of the beach.

Four wheel drive vehicles are recommended for driving to the camping and off highway vehicle use areas in the park.

Beach wheelchairs are available for loan at the Pier and Grand Avenue entrances to the beach.

Surfing, swimming, surf fishing, horseback riding and bird watching are popular activities.

Location/Directions
The recreation area is located in Oceano, three miles south of Pismo Beach off Highway 1.

One mile south of the Pier Avenue beach ramp is Post 2, a post on the beach which marks the beginning of the off-highway vehicle riding and camping area.

OHV's must be transported to this point before unloading. Any areas on the beach or in the dunes that are fenced or signed are closed to vehicular use because they either contain sensitive plant and animal life or are private property.

Seasons/Climate/Recommended clothing

Summer temperatures – Highs: 60's and 70's; Lows: 50's; Dense morning fog

Winter temperatures – Highs: 50's and 60's; Lows: 40's; high winds in Spring

The weather is often quite changeable, layered clothing is recommended.

Pismo Beach/Shell Beach

Pismo Beach

Pismo and Shell Beach offer long white beaches, rocky cliffs and spectacular sunsets. This classic California beach town offers superb dining and shopping, golf, the dunes, horseback riding, surfing, body boarding, or fishing from a 1200-foot pier.

Website http://www.classiccalifornia.com/

Village of Arroyo Grande

Arroyo Grande

Explore the Historic Village of Arroyo Grande, the Central Coast's unique turn-of-the-century downtown village. Here you'll find a unique array of antiques, specialty shops and fine dining, all nestled within the scenic atmosphere of historic buildings, natural beauty, and timeless treasures.

Baywood Park/Los Osos

Baywood Park

Baywood Park is a small town located next to Los Osos, and has incredible beaches, sunsets, nature preserves and dunes. Relax here, or use as a base to visit other parts of this very scenic county.

Cayucos

Cayucos

Downtown Cayucos still has the small town charm, while being located just steps from a great beach for swimming, surfing and fishing. Enjoy the pier, great restaurants and antique stores in this charming old town.

Elephant Seals

San Simeon

Elephant seals can be observed along small coves just south of the Piedras Blancas lighthouse. Populations have grown from a few dozen in 1990 to current estimates of nearly 10,000.

Montana de Oro State Park

Baywood Park

A beautiful nature preserve on the coast in Los Osos. Great hiking and sightseeing opportunities. Tidepools. Make sure to visit beautiful Spooners Cove inside the park, which also offers a small natural history museum of local teasures.

Morro Bay Estuary/Morro Rock

Morro Bay

Morro Rock, the near by dunes, harbor and estuary are beautiful to look at and a year-round attraction to visitors. You'll find wonderful stores, art galleries and boutiques right next to the beautiful Pacific Ocean.

Paso Robles

Paso Robles

Paso Robles is in wine country and is known for its relaxed ambience and beautiful drives. The scenery is as delicious as the wines they produce. Enjoy wine tasting, historic downtown shopping, and annual wine festivals and car shows.

Town of Harmony

Harmony

Harmony is one of the smallest towns in the USA, with just 14 inhabitants. It offers historic buildings with small boutiques, pottery shop, glass maker, several crafters and artisans, and a charming winery overlooking the tiny town below.

Village of Cambria

Cambria

The quaint Village of Cambria is host to many boutiques, local artists and quality art galleries with paintings of the natural beauty of the area. Moonstone Beach in Cambria provides dramatic views of the ocean.

Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa
(Mission Plaza in downtown SLO) This is considered by many to be the most beautiful of all California missions. Founded in 1772 and still an active church.

Performing Arts Center San Luis Obispo
The state-of-the-art, 91,500 square foot center located on the Cal Poly campus is the result of a partnership between the city, Cal Poly and the Foundation for the Performing Arts. The 1,350 seat Harmon Concert Hall is acoustically one of the best halls in the world and has been JBL Professional's exclusive North American test and demonstration site.

Downtown
Bustling with activity, downtown offers great shopping, outdoor and indoor dining, night life, and its famous Thursday Night Farmer's Market where you can buy locally grown fresh produce and enjoy an outdoor barbecue.

California Polytechnic State University
Cal Poly is known throughout the world for its excellence in learn-by-doing education. Largest schools of engineering and architecture in the west. Visitors welcome. Walking campus tours are offered each Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 10 a.m. & 2 p.m., except major holidays. Self-guided tours can be taken anytime; call tour hotline 756-5734 for the latest update. Don't miss the Shakespeare Press Museum, Poly Canyon, horse and dairy units, and the ornamental horticulture greenhouses.

Railroad Depot
(South end of Santa Rosa Street) This restored depot brings back memories of the time when railroads were America's lifeline.

Jack House
(536 Marsh Street) Built in the late 1870s and deeded to the city by the Jack family in 1974, this historic Victorian home has been fully restored into a “living museum,” giving visitors a glimpse of life at the turn of the century. Admission $2. Call 781-7308 for recorded information about docent guided tours.

San Luis Obispo Art Center
(1010 Broad St.) San Luis Obispo's community art center in Mission Plaza features the works of many of SLO's most talented amateur and professional artists. Admission is free. Open to the public 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

County Historical Museum
(696 Monterey St., next to the Mission) Tells the story of San Luis Obispo's colorful history via changing displays of old photographs and artifacts. Open Wednesday through Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free admission.

San Luis Obispo's Children's Museum
(1010 Nipomo St.) A museum just for children and others who like to explore and learn. Kids can race to the scene of a fire on the back of a fire engine, watch themselves on television or zip down a dinosaur slide. Admission $4. Call 544-KIDS or visit the website www.kids.fix.net for more information.

Website http://www.slocm.org/

Chamber of Commerce Visitors Center
(1039 Chorro St.) Not to brag, but our center has received rave reviews from more than one travel writer. Open daily, Sunday and Monday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday and Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Maps and complete information on San Luis Obispo and points north and south. Information on Hearst Castle and tickets. National Forest Adventure passes, special event tickets, books, postcards, and other souvenir items also available. Complete calendar of events going on throughout the city and county.

 


Sunday Special
Start your stay on Sunday and get 20% off. 15% off on additional weekdays and higher rates on weekends.

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