1. The Return Of The Kings Deserves Its Own Award

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Sacramento Kings via Facebook
No, not the Tolkien flick, we’re talking basketball. Forget Seattle—this is where the Kings belong. If you’re not a fan already, the three things you have to know are:
  1. There are no “fair-weather fans” of the Kings. You are a Kings fan. Die by purple and black.
  2. Demarcus Cousins is the man. Yeah Boogie!
  3. You don’t need to drink haterade to know the Lakers stink.
So go catch a game at ARCO—excuse me, SleepTrain Arena ASAP.

2. It Will Always Be ARCO Arena To A Native Sacramentan

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Eric Fredericks
‘Nuff said.

3. People Draw Lines In The Sand Over Ice Cream

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Leatherby’s Family Creamery (Elk Grove) via Facebook
Leatherby’s? Burr’s? Vic’s? Gunther’s? For most people in Sacramento, this isn’t a choice. It’s more of a list of cults that all think they know best where to get the perfect summer treat. It’s that important.

4. The West Wind Drive In Is The Best Place To Take Your Sweetie

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: West Wind Sacramento 6 Drive In
The Sacramento 6 Drive In is probably one of the last places on the West Coast that features a drive-uppable, bring-your-own-snackable, 1950s-imitatable movie-watching experience. It’s worth all the hyphens, trust me. And after the flick you can keep the retro magic going at Rick’s Desert Diner. You’re welcome.

5. The Holy Bowl Is The Best Sacrosanct Football Around

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Giphy.com
You don’t need to be a disciple, much less a student, of Jesuit or Christian Brothers to appreciate the diehard rivalry of the Holy Bowl, the annual clash of the two high schools. Get ready to care about high school football in a way you never thought was possible.

6. What A Rivercat Is

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Sacramento River Cats via Facebook
The Kings attract 98% of the sports fan fervor in this part of the world, but there are a few other teams worth checking out, if only because they’re minor league, and when something is minor league, it guarantees a good time. Kids day has facepainting, post-game base running and other fun pursuits, and hot dogs and beer and I’ll be right back….

7. All The Reasons To Love The California State Fair

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: California State Fair via Facebook
Fried everything, rocking concerts, and rattling rides—there are so many reasons to make any state fair a part of your life, but the Sacramento one is particularly fun, not just because it’s close, but for the fireworks, baby animals, and quirky showcases like the hypnotist show that really set this one apart.

8. Sacramento’s Ziggurat Is Definitely The Best Ziggurat

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Rojer
If you’re one of the lucky folks who works for a company that is holed up in this stunning Mesopotamian spectacle, consider yourself lucky. You’re working in an immediately recognizable Sacramento landmark that’s 100% Feng Shui’d, and even better, you’ve probably got a great view of the river.

9. You Know Someone Who Works At The Capitol. No, You Totally Do

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user National Farm Worker Ministry
The State of California employs far and away the most people in Sacramento. I mean, this isn’t some kind of stunning revelation, but it’s true. And potentially a lucrative maneuver if you’re looking to break into politics.

10. Tower Is Still A Big Name In Sac City

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Flickr user Nick Ares
Even though the Tower Records empire has closed its doors (it started here!) the name continues to grace some of the cities finest entertainment institutions. The Tower Theater specializes in Sundance darlings and movies with subtitles, because some people do go to a movie to read.

11. Sacramento Has The Next Best Thing To The Giving Tree—One That Hugs

Source: The Sacramento Bee via Youtube
Every kid in Sacramento has climbed the hugging tree on T Street. Heck, one couple even got married under the dang thing. This tree is huge, around 50 feet, and a local landmark. Unfortunately, the tree had to lose its iconic arm recently, but that won’t keep Sacramentans from remembering the fancy foliage fondly.

12. Sacramento City Could Basically Babysit Your Child

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Fairytale Town via Facebook
With Fairytale Town, the Train Museum, and Funderland all right here, Sacramentans never have a lack of options for throwing their little rugrats’ birthday party.

13. You Only Go To Old Sac When Your Family’s In Town

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Prayitno
The way people in NYC view the Statue of Liberty and the way people in Chicago view the Sears Tower is exactly the same way Sacramentans view Old Sac: it’s great for field trips, or for showing to your family who are visiting Sacramento. The place itself has a nice, rustic feel, but you’re not going to go there on a Friday night.

14. Time Travel Is Real And True Here

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Kyle Magnuson
Besides Old Sac, there are many historical places to visit and experience the heyday of the California Gold Rush—Sutter’s Fort, the Guild Theater, Sutter Gold Mine; it’s all waiting to be explored.

15. You Want Local Food In Your Mouth All The Time

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Robert Couse-Baker
This is a two-pronged point: not only does Sacramento have a great farmers’ market, but the actual restaurants that have been around for decades will treat your tummy right. Need some tips? Mikuni for sushi, and Squeeze Inn for great cheeseburger action. Cheese skirt!

16. The Best Place To Trap A Fantastic Artist Is At 2nd Saturdays

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Robert Couse-Baker
Second Saturdays attracts all the artists worth mentioning in the immediate metro area. The wealth of galleries in East Sac, Downtown, and beyond mean an endless day of boutique-hopping. If you’re more into checking out the downtown, know that these boutiques all offer refreshments. It’s like a super slow-paced marathon with regular refreshment tables and magnificent crafts.

17. The Outdoors Are Super Dramatic

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Sacramento Shakespeare Festival
Out of all the outdoor events that happen in the summer, there are TWO theatrical events that you HAVE to attend. Sacramento Shakespeare brings in a bunch of junior Patrick Stewarts and Helen Mirrens to spin compelling classic tales. Then, there’s the Fair Oaks Theatre Festival, which puts on a whole summer season of musicals and plays for your delight.

18. A Level Of River Love That Would Make Mark Twain Look Like A Poser

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Eric Fredericks
With the Sacramento and American river right around the bend, it comes as no surprise that Sacramentans have incorporated natural beauty into their daily lives. Catch a ride on the Victorian “Delta King,” a moored tugboat that was pulled right out of Huck Finn, or just take a stroll along the River Walk and take in the sights and sounds.

19. Sacramentans Know How To Make A REAL Chalk Drawing

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Chalk It Up via Facebook
They seem to pop up at any public event—amazing chalk artists who make every square of boring concrete pavement into a Mary Poppins portal to brighter, livelier world. You’ll want to watch come Labor Day weekend as all the artists that call Sacramento home take their skills to the streets and create breathtaking, heartbreakingly temporary works of chalk art for Chalk-It-Up!, which raises funds for children’s arts education.

20. Those Tasty Brown Beans Come Best In Sacramento

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Temple Fine Coffee and Tea via Facebook
Especially at Temple Coffee. That little cup with the black lid and white holder are basically an icon of Sacramento living at this point. Any intern who wants extra office points right off the bat will bring that into work.

21. The Tower Bridge Is A Fashion Accessory

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Nick Ares
Nothing is bigger symbol of living in Sacramento than the Tower Bridge. Instantly recognizable to any native, you’ll find it emblazoned on shirts, mugs, every little souvenir you’ll find in tourist traps.

22. Sacramento Is Just Plain A Cool Place To Live

22 Things You Learn While Living In Sacramento
Source: Flickr user Jake Guild
Don’t believe me? Don’t believe the Internet? How about Forbes magazine pinning a 14th place ranking for the city in their Coolest Cities of 2014? By the way, it totally beat out Los Angeles and San Jose. What’s something you learned living in Sacramento? Tell us in the comments below!