When I was offered my current job back in July, my first thoughts were as follows:
1. "Woohoo!! A job! Oh, the relief!!!"
3. "Well, the job is exactly what I want."
4. "But still...Stockton...
Let's face it, Stockton doesn't have a shining reputation. Most people thing gang wars, murder and mayhem. I thought, "Well, here goes."
I've been pleasantly surprised. Yes, there are parts of Stockton I avoid like the plague; and while it's by far not the worst part of Stockton, I wouldn't want to live in the neighborhood in which I teach (but that's also partly because then my kids would figure out where I live). But I found a cute, reasonably-priced apartment in the northern part of town, and I have found that downtown Stockton, while not as beautiful and cosmopolitan as other cities in California, still has a lot to offer in terms of art, music, sporting events, and culture. And let's not forget that Stockton is home to University of the Pacific (UOP), Cal State Stanislaus, and San Joaquin Delta College.
Tonight I sat down and did some serious Googling, looking for things to do in the next couple of months--events at which I might meet interesting people and further my enjoyment of this city I rather impulsively decided to call home. Here's what I came up with:
1. The Bob Hope Theater
The Bob Hope Theater has a full season of Broadway shows, comedy shows, jazz, and classic cinema. They draw some interesting names, including upcoming concerts featuring The Temptations and Chaka Khan. I can dig it.
2. Stockton Civic Theater
This is the local theater group, and it looks like they do some great shows as well, including their upcoming run of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella. I'm toying with the idea of becoming a volunteer usher.
3. The Haggin Museum
I'm very excited about this museum--it has a nice art collection (including one of my favorite of the French Impressionists, Pierre-Auguste Renoir), and I'm very excited about an upcoming exhibition of photos entitled "Portraits from the Golden Age of Jazz." I'm so there.
They also have relics of the history of Stockton, the Delta, and California, which sounds exciting to the history buff in me.
I love sporting events. I find them exciting and fun. So I'm excited to see that Stockton has a minor-league hockey team, the Stockton Thunder, and, of course, the collegiate sports.
5. Farmer's Market
Did you know that my current town, Antioch, did not have a farmer's market? I once looked up the nearest farmer's market and it was miles out of the way. In Stockton, there's one at a nearby mall on Sundays, though I suspect it will be closing for the winter soon.
My planner is filling up fast with things I want to do. I think on Thursday, I'll head over to the "Expressions in Paint" opening event at San Joaquin Delta College. UOP is having Morgan Spurlock (he of "Supersize Me" fame) speak on October 18--and it's free to the public!
Now, the only question is...would anyone like to join me in any of these events? : )