Patch Picks is a weekly feature highlighting editor and reader picks of great local businesses, destinations, services, organizations, ways to spend a day off and more.
You’ll find useful lists to help you, your family, friends and significant others find the best places for everything from Sunday brunch to New Year’s Eve celebrations, pumpkin patches, date-night destinations, florists, girlfriend nights out, kids party places, parks and more.
Innovative new businesses in Santa Cruz: The economy may still be in a slump, but that hasn’t stopped these local business owners from turning their ambitious dreams into reality. A designer nut shop and a medicinal marijuana shop are among a few new local businesses to recently open in Santa Cruz.
: The True Olive Connection is a unique tasting room and retail boutique specializing in fresh, high-quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar from around the globe. Located in the central business district of downtown Santa Cruz, The True Olive Connection opened its doors in November of 2010. The store carries aged balsamic vinegars (with several creative flavors to choose from), extra virgin olive oils, fused olive oils, gourmet oils as well as Olivella personal care products, specialty spices and salts, pasta, olives, garlic, pestos, jams and gift baskets.
Creme de Canna: A legitimate business and state registered non-profit, Creme De Canna located across the Dominican Hospital in Santa Cruz began creating gourmet medicated ice cream and other edibles in 2010. Serving verified patients the highest-quality medicinal cannabis, cookies and extracts, this innovative storefront has received an overwhelmingly positive response from the community and has shown that people really enjoy the over all experience and benefits of its products.
The Bike Dojo: Maybe not 2011 new, but this is one business still worth mentioning. The Bike Dojo was founded in June 2009 by Rob Mylls, a Santa Cruz local, avid cyclist and former BMX, track and road racing champion. His cool innovative shop offers spin classes throughout the day with state of the art Schwinn indoor recreational bikes in addition to virtual reality bikes where you decide if you want to race the Tour de France or climb through the mountains of Lake Tahoe. Bike Dojo also takes those interested in outdoor guided rides throughout Santa Cruz—you name it, scenic roads along West Cliff or challenging trails of Wilder Ranch. And, if you’re looking for a safe place to park your precious bicycle, Bike Dojo will babysit your bike (for a nominal fee) while you shop, eat, work, or play in the downtown Santa Cruz area.
Nut Kreations: If you are nuts about nuts, then check out the new designer house of almonds, cashews, pistachios and more at Nut Kreations in downtown Santa Cruz. Owners Mina and Brody Feuerhaken celebrate the wholesomeness, tastefulness, and sacred value of natural nut goodness and everything else that goes with it. At their nut house, you can choose your own custom freshly roasted and seasoned trail mixes, granola mix or that special gourmet gift or platter to impress your guests or colleagues. Asides from that the owners of Nut Kreations are proud to have all their products made in environmentally friendly premise in order to give back to the precious community of Santa Cruz and beyond.
Mrs Bus Stop Preschool: There is a new fully licensed preschool in town named Mrs. Bustop Preschool. Started by owner and director Maureen Thompson in March of 2011, the in-home, cozy preschool makes the transition from home to school as easy as can 1, 2, 3. With over 30-years of experience, it has been a lifelong dream of Mrs. Thompson’s to open her own preschool. The preschool accepts children ages 24-months to entering Kindergarten for full-days and half-days, Monday through Friday. Rest assured—at Mrs. Bustop Preschool, your child will have a wonderful time in an environment rooted in respect and compassion, so I encourage you to check it out for yourself and see if it will be a good match for you and your little learner. For more information please contact Maureen Thompson at (831) 476-8659.