Shop in Oroville – nice clean streets, plenty of parking, friendly folks, and great stuff!

We started the morning at Mugshots on Montgomery Street. I'm sorry I couldn't get a better picture of this really neat old brick building.

We started our morning in Oroville at Mugshots on Montgomery Street. I’m sorry I couldn’t gt a better picture of this really neat old brick building.

Update – unfortunately, O-ville has a general sales tax increase on the ballot for November 2016. If that passes I will not be doing anymore shopping there.  

Today my husband and I had a service appointment for our car over in Oroville, so we decided to take a look around their neat little Downtown area. Oroville is one of the oldest towns in California, and they’ve managed to keep an impressive number of old buildings intact, many of them housing successful businesses. If you haven’t finished your Christmas shopping yet, I’d recommend a quick trip over to O-ville.

We had to have our car in the garage at 9, and we knew it would take at least an hour, so we looked online to see what kind of coffee shops we could find within walking distance.  About two blocks away we found Mugshots, a neat little arthouse with a good enough cup of Has Beans and a darned good scone. Plus, the walls are lined with local art and photography, even the tables are artsy. It’s a nice crowd, a mixed group of college-age to Gramma-Grampa types.  The  music is low and friendly, and so is the chatter. We sat in the sunny front window table for about a half hour, read the N&R then picked up our junk and hit the sidewalk looking for some deals.

This is Ruby's, a neat little shop for that young gal in your life. Very affordable, really neat stuff.

This is Ruby’s, a neat little shop tucked into another one of Montgomery Street’s historic buildings.

Ruby’s Boutique on Montgomery is  great place to get something for that high school to college-age gal in your life – or your very chic transvestite friend. It’s within my budget, so you’ll probably find something in your price range.

The streets are wide, the sidewalks clear in Oroville. While they've done a lot of work on their sidewalks lately, not bulbs. Traffic moves along but you can get across the street safely.

The streets are wide, the sidewalks clear in Oroville. While they’ve done a lot of work on their sidewalks lately, no bulbs. Traffic moves along but you can get across the street safely.

We didn’t encounter any people panhandling us at corners or laying across the sidewalk, but we did encounter friendly people. There are a lot of antique stores in Downtown Oroville, full to the brim with all that stuff from Grandma’s attic and Grandpa’s shop. In fact, the first place we wandered into when we turned the corner out of Ruby’s was Grandma’s Thrift Shop.

Grandma's Thrift Shoppe is one of the tidiest, most organized thrift shops I've ever been to. I didn't take the camera inside, but I dare you to walk out of this place without spending money.

Grandma’s Thrift Shoppe is one of the tidiest, most organized thrift shops I’ve ever been to. I didn’t take the camera inside, but I dare you to walk out of this place without spending money.

Whenever I’m in a thrift shop I look for coffee cups, which just seem to disappear around here. Here’s my fave, already got coffee in it.

You always find the best coffee cups at thrift shops.

You always find the best coffee cups at thrift shops.

I know, I was supposed to be Christmas shopping. Check out this snowman figurine I got for my snowman collecting friend.

For the person who thinks they have everything.

For the person who thinks they have everything.

I know, I could have bought that at Hallmark a few years ago, but when I dig it out of a shelf full of bazillions of unrelated porcelain figurines, it’s a Find!  And, Grandma’s is a charity outfit, so you get more bang for your buck.

The streets are so clean and wide, the shops so colorful, I told my husband, we just have to come here to hang out more often. There’s a very vibrant art scene in O’ville.

These murals are everywhere - and I'm guessing, paid for by the property owners, not the taxpayers.

These murals are everywhere – and I’m guessing, paid for by the property owners, not the taxpayers.

We were looking for some sort of mule or donkey art for my father-in-law, who breeds mules and donkeys on his ranch in SoCal. When we saw this shop we hoped to find an outrageous rainbow colored mule.

 
I wish I could have been bold enough to ask the shop keeper if I could take pictures - this shop is full of cool crap.

I wish I could have been bold enough to ask the shop keeper if I could take pictures – this shop is full of outrageous metal sculpture, made from scrap. But no donkeys, damn the luck.

We left empty-handed, but with a new appreciation for the art scene in Oroville. The shop keeper said she will keep an eye out for donkey art, we’ll be back.

I saw lots of cool shops, met nice people, but never had the nerve to ask to take pictures, sorry. Maybe next time.

Our car had a minor glitch, but it had to be fixed via computer through the dealership, so we were able to ramble the streets for an hour or so before we were called back to fetch our car. Thanks Oroville Ford, for the opportunity to get out and about.

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5 thoughts on “Shop in Oroville – nice clean streets, plenty of parking, friendly folks, and great stuff!

  1. I went to the Mary Lake-Thompson Holiday warehouse sale today in Oroville. I saved so much $$ that I went to the other stores downtown. Wow! I was very pleasantly surprised at the new stores in Oroville. Free parking, very clean streets and sidewalks plus I felt very safe.

    • Thanks Rose – that’s interesting. I see Mary Lake Thompson Holiday Warehouse rented a storefront in Downtown Oroville for a two day pre-Christmas sale, how nifty. They sell the kind of stuff I’d put in a gift basket, good prices. And, I have to wonder, how many people, like you, drove how far to spend money in Oroville over that two-day sale? That’s a great way to get people in, then they wander the rest of town.

      We must have just missed it – we left town about 10:30, just as folks were getting out on the streets. The vendors we talked to all seemed excited about this weekend, I think they’ll do well this year.

      • Those cute dish towels in the package were $1 — unpackaged 50 cents. The sale continues today at their warehouse location.

        Yes – I wasn’t the only one hitting the streets Friday afternoon. I kept running into the ladies I met while standing in line at ML-T sale.

  2. Pingback: Oroville puts sales tax increase on the ballot – is their retail sector ready for this? | Chico Taxpayers Association

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