Things to do in Fresno: 2020 Edition
Fresno is a big city. With a population of about half a million people, we are the fifth largest city in California. With that being said, why is it such a struggle to find something fun to do that isn’t going to the zoo, the movies, or bowling? Not that those things aren’t great, but we have all done it a dozen times before!
That is why we decided to make this list of unique things to do in Fresno. Us Fresnans deserve to have a good time while supporting our amazing city. Without further ado, here are six unique things to do in Fresno!
1. Spend the day in the Tower District
If you have never been to the Tower District, you are seriously missing out. This little stretch of road on Olive street is one of the hubs that defines Fresno culture. Whether you are seeing a show at the Historic Tower Theater, Grabbing an exquisite cup of coffee at The Revue, or enjoying the best ice cream in the valley down the street at Ampersand Ice Cream, this place has something for everyone. If you are a part of the 21 and up club, you can check out the nightlife in the tower, too.
We even have a billiards bar called Detention where the upstairs is a 1920’s-themed speakeasy called “The Library”. It is a well-regarded secret (so owner’s of Detention if you want us to take this shout-out down just let us know.) If you plan to go there, you need reservations ahead of time. You could even get your outfit from Bebe O’s, a vintage boutique that is across the street from tower theater on Wishon Ave. Grab a bite to eat at Veni Vidi Vici, Casa De Tamales, Irene’s Cafe, and many more! Needless to say, I could fill this whole article with great places to visit in Tower. Simply put, Tower is a unique gem for Fresno.
2. Support local Artist at ArtHop
Image courtesy of visitfresno.org
Every first Thursday of the month, Downtown Fresno hosts an event called ArtHop, which showcases local artists, makers, and businesses! Enjoy a wine tasting from NATIV WINE, or try the beer from Full Circle Brewing Co. (side note: we LOVE their Lime:Thirty Lager). Then, visit all the various makers to find something special to take home.
Whether that is a bouquet of flowers from Flora Flower Cart, a rad new shirt from Root General Store, or an “ABC’s of Fresno” print from Elowyn Dickerson; there is something for everyone. Even if you just go to browse, enjoy the atmosphere, and eat some good food, you are sure to have a good time at ArtHop.
3. Play an Escape Room
*WARNING: Shameless self-promotion ahead*
Escape rooms are becoming a booming past-time throughout the US, and Fresno is no exception for these creative locations. We are Next-Gen Escape, and just so happen to be a Fresno escape room! So, it would be silly to not include us on this list of things to do in Fresno. That being said, escape rooms are still .a less well-known and fun way to spend your evening.
*An escape room is a live-action puzzle game, where you have one hour to solve a number of clues and puzzles to achieve a goal. They usually have a theme and a story-line, so you can be the star of your own movie. Definitely check out our rooms at Next-Gen Escape if you haven’t yet! Some other great escape room businesses are our friends at The Puzzle Effect and Xcape Room Fresno. (FYI if you are in the Tulare area, checkout CLEVR! We are excited to check out their rooms this year and have heard TONS of great things about them!)
UPDATE: We took our team out to CLEVR, and were utterly blown away. Their rooms are incredibly fun and a blast to play. We were able to beat both of their rooms and had some fun with their virtual reality games. If you are in the area or passing through, you HAVE to check them out!.
4. Family Fun Centers and Arcades
Image courtesy of Imm3rse.in
If you are looking for a place to bring the whole family, Fresno has a few great family-friendly places. No surrender is located in the Sierra Vista mall. This place has everything from Laser tag, an arcade, and even an indoor playground. Just remember to bring some grip socks! Speaking of grip socks, Fresno is also home to numerous trampoline parks; like Aerozone, DEFY Clovis, and 2extreme Arena.
If you enjoy all you can eat pizza and fun games, head on over to John’s Incredible Pizza. Everyone who grew up in Fresno has probably been here for a birthday at least a time or two. On a budget? No problem! Just go to OH WOW! Nickel Arcade, where a nickel goes a long way. Looking for something a little more immersive? Try Imm3rse.in Virtual Reality Arcade. If you have never played VR before, you HAVE TO try it! It is like being transported into a different world.
5. Explore new hobbies
Fresno has a few Board game shops such as Crazy Squirrel and Legends Comics and Games. These places are great to visit if you are on a budget, because they usually have a few board games that you can play for free to test them out. They also have regular meetups for board game nights. In addition to playing board games, there are many opportunities to get new hobbies in Fresno
You could join a paint night class, which is often led by Local artists and hosted by local restaurants and businesses. Also, you could take a dancing class over at D & J Dance. D & J offer all types of dance classes from Hip-Hop to Salsa and everything in between. If your looking for a new hobby that is less time intensive, you could pick up a new plant at Foliage in Clovis. The owner, Yasmeen, will tell you exactly how to care for the plant, so you will be in good hands when you make the decision to become a plant parent. Overall, Fresno has many great opportunities that can help you jumpstart a cool new hobby.
6. Enjoy the natural beauty of the Central Valley
People seem to think that in order to be in nature you have to drive an hour or two to get to the parks like Yosemite or the Sequoias. However, there are beautiful places that are located right here in Fresno. One of our favorite places is Lost Lake Park. Located just 15 minutes outside of town on Friant, Lost Lake Park is a beautiful getaway. Skip the long drive but keep all the benefits of nature.