Riverside Journals

The Last Oasis: Riverside, CA

A travel journal to Riverside by Elli Metz

Quote: In an attempt to see my new hometown in a new light, I've been wandering around for the last few days to see it with "new eyes". This journal is the result.

The Last Oasis: Riverside, CA

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Quote:
Surprisingly, Riverside doesn't fall into that "next town over" mentality, which is common in towns close to or bordering larger metropolises. Though its proximitally close to the City of Angels, it's developed its own history and its own feel, of which it is extremely proud. Riverside has sprung up (as much as one can "spring up" over four hundred years) around the central Mission district, which was a center of the city's life. The former Franciscan mission has long since been converted for secular use, but it set the tone for the architecture and "feel" of the city itself. While here, don't miss the Mission Inn tours, hikes in Sycamore Canyon, or some of the breathtaking walks a...Read More

Anchos Southwest Grill & Bar

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "Ancho's...mmmm."

Quote:
Touted as real southwestern cuisine, Ancho's is like a Taco Bell for the discriminating set. Housed in what looks like the courtyard of an old Mission (when in fact, it's quite new, built for Ancho's in specific), the bright colors and terazzo floor might fool you into thinking this is just any other ol' restaurant at which to get tacos. Ah, wary traveller, you're in for a treat. Actually, Ancho's is an amazing place to eat. With dishes like Angels on Horseback (large shrimp wrapped in bacon with a sliver of jalapeno in the center for around $13USD) and handmade tortillas and salsa while you wait, this could hardly be taken for "just another place to get a taco". The entire...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 23, 2001

Anchos Southwest Grill & Bar
10773 Hole Avenue
Riverside, California 92505
(909) 352-0240

Mario's Pizza

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "Mario's"

Quote:
Most of the time, when we think of Italian restaurants, we're thinking of Sicilian cooking. Red sauces, spaghetti and meatballs type dining on red checkered tablecloths, mafia men in the shadowy corners. This is not such a place. Mario's is an elegant restaurant (which is reflected in the steep prices) with a fabulous wait staff, serving authentic northern Italian cooking. This is the Tuscan-style meal -- seafood and heartier dishes, not as much tomato sauce or pasta, and more arborio rice. Paella and crusty breads are more popular here than pizza. Mario's is in the process of moving. The locatin they are in now -- way out near the industrial district -- is a beautiful building in...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 26, 2001

Mario's Pizza
9733 Sierra Avenue
Riverside, California 92335
(909) 350-1212

Java Books

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Restaurant

Quote:
I thought this was a bookstore when I first saw the place, but when I went in, much to my surprise, the books are secondary. It's ,mainly an independent coffee shop, selling coffee drinks that they've concocted themselves with names like "The Chocolate Hammer" and "Suzy's Surprise" (a double mocha with chocolate sprinklings for the former, a cherry-berry coffee frozen thing for the latter). They offer the usual overpriced confections: bagels and cookie bars, chocolate covered espresso beans and cheesecakes, as well as smoothies in every imaginable combination (including something green with wheat grass that I've been afraid to try). Lately, they've also gone into the sandwich business, offerin...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 26, 2001

Java Books
195 E Alessandro Blvd
Riverside, California 92508
(951) 789-8684

Stamp Garden

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Attraction

Quote:
For only being about a ten minute drive from downtown Riverside, this place seems to have a different atmosphere than similar stores downtown. Its product lines are a little more "cute" (being more about fuzzy bunnies than kitsch), though they have a hefty selection of embossing powders and other accessories, which makes up for the cuteness in a hurry. The prices were quite reasonable. Stamps that list for $12/ea are roughly 15-20% cheaper, and papers here are much less expensive than at some of the other places in town. Where SG has a problem, though, is in selection (on the paper front). Glossy cardstock seems to be the lot of it, with a basket or two of large sheets of handmade...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on March 6, 2001

Stamp Garden
Industry Pkwy Mall
Riverside, California

Michelle's Friends

Attraction

Quote:
If you're lucky enough to find Michelle's Friends, tucked away in the Canyon Crest Shopping Center, near the Pizza Hut and Ralph's, you're going to find one of the most consistently best pet stores in the area. Aside from a steady stream of dogs, cats, fish, and lizards, Michelle's Friends offers organic pet food, a full line of pet leashes (including iguana leashes, if you're a lizard person), and toys & accessories for the most discriminating of pets. What's special about Michelle's Friends is the story behind it, as much as the merchandise. A few years ago, a crazy man in this area killed his wife, Michelle. He stuffed her in his trunk, but was eventually caught in Arizona, br...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 26, 2001

Michelle's Friends
Canyon Crest shopping center
Riverside, California

A Little Bizaar

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Attraction

Quote:
The store itself is small, hidden behind an office building. The window looks mostly unadorned from the parking spaces, just the store name and some curtains -- but when you get up close, you can see that the entire place is jam-packed with everything from beads and watercolor pencils to computer front software and row upon row of rubber stamps, none of which could be considered overly "cute". Oh, sure, there's a few mice and fuzzy bunnies, but the majority of the store focuses on stamps with an edge -- patterns and collage elements. More Acey-Deucy than Hero Arts. (two stamp companies, for the unenlightened) Rich, the owner's husband, a hulk of a man that looks a whole lot like Santa Claus ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 26, 2001

A Little Bizaar
31712 Casino Drive
Riverside, California 92530
(951) 471-0882

Time Video

Attraction | "Video Time"

Quote:
With the proliferation of Blockbusters on every corner, Hollywoods in every strip mall -- it's nice to find a good, independent video store that isn't either a specialty shop or an all-porn extravaganza. Video Time is just one such slice of how it used to be. All political reasons aside, Video Time is just a great place to go for videos. Though it's smaller and more dimly-lit than one of its big blue counterparts, the selection of older movies is impressively large and varied. There are actually two stores -- one in Riverside and an even larger one off Nuevo Road in Perris, and if you have membership to one, it's easy to get membership at the other -- just show your card -- and you'll likely...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 26, 2001

Time Video
321 E Alessandro Blvd
Riverside, California 92508
(951) 780-5530

Quote:
One of the best things about living in Riverside, is the Wednesday night festivals downtown. Much like Portland's Saturday Market (journal elsewhere), it is a regular arts festival with a lot of attitude. Everyone comes out for these things, at least semi-regularly. Starting at 4p.m. on Wednesdays, it's like a midweek break from the grind. Stores set up tables, live music plays, and people mill about having fun and cutting loose after three full days at work. There's an energy here -- a young, vibrant energy -- that is easily "soak-up-able". When spirits are lagging, one trip to the Wednesday Night events, and you'll be re-energized. Bring some money -- there's great food and lots...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 26, 2001

Downtown Wednesday Nights
Downtown
Riverside, California

About the Writer

Elli Metz

Elli Metz
Norfolk, Nebraska

Riverside Tips & Stories

Downtown Riverside