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Best Place to Picnic in Santa Barbara
updated: Jul 24, 2014, 12:00 PM

By Edhat Subscriber

With it being so hot lately, it's hard to cook in the evenings. I want to pick up some take out and have a picnic dinner with my family. Any suggestions on where we should go? I work near downtown.

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 538885 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:02 PM

Grab some yummy sandwiches and go to the Alice Keck duck pond!

 

 COMMENT 538888 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:03 PM

Beach. It's freaking hot out there.

 

 DOWNDOG agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:03 PM

Gladdens on Hollister across from GV Hospital. They are a produce store with an on site caterer, who makes meals to go every day.

 

 COMMENT 538893 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:05 PM

Rocky Nook Park, Alameda Park, Alice Keck Park MG, Leadbetter Beach, Arroyo Burro County Beach, East Beach, Chase Palm Park, Stearn's Wharf... Shoreline Park.... I'm running out of place with picnic benches near the down town area that might appeal to a family.

 

 DOWNDOG agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:05 PM

Oops, thought you meant where to go to pick up food. I don't think you can do better than beach in this heat.

 

 COMMENT 538895 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:06 PM

Your planned picnic spot and area in town for shopping will help us make recommendations.

 

 COMMENT 538898P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:08 PM

I'd pick up some wine, chocolate from Chocolate Maya and walk 200 steps down the street to D'Angelo bakery for a yummy Sammy.

 

 COMMENT 538902 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:11 PM

I'd go peruse the offerings at Whole Foods. Their hot food and salad bar offerings are fantastic!

 

 COMMENT 538905 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:13 PM

I hate to state the obvious, but Shoreline park has nice tables and a good breeze in the evenings. I usually get picnic food at Whole Foods so everyone can get exactly what they like.

 

 COMMENT 538906 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:13 PM

We enjoy getting food from Lazy Acres and then going to Shoreline Park. The Mexican restaurant across the street and Mesa Pizza Co are other good options.

South Coast Deli and Alice Keck Park is another great option but they close at 4 I believe.

 

 COMMENT 538914 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:24 PM

Fresco

 

 COMMENT 538915P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:25 PM

TJ's, salami, cheese, banquettes etc. So easy & perfect for this weather. Also, we walked past the new restaurant, where Maggie's was (sorry, can't remember the new name), and it smelled wonderful, FWTW. Good idea, btw, I might have to follow your lead :-)

 

 COMMENT 538916P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:26 PM

Mission Lawn - no sand in the salad

 

 MISTA agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:31 PM

Skofield Park or Franchesci Park... The latter has best views in SB

 

 COMMENT 538931 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 12:47 PM

Today is Thursday- there's a concert at Chase Palm Park this evening. You can lay your blanket out at 2pm and save a space. If you have younger kids stake out a spot near the playground and you can walk the kids over and still hear the music.

 

 COMMENT 538939 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 01:02 PM

931: sorry, but WAY too late to save a space now! Crowds line up at 6am and stake their claim the minute the bell rings at noon.

 

 COMMENT 538942 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 01:08 PM

It's always fun to watch clueless vacationers try to picnic at the Arroyo Burro off leash dog beach on a busy weekend. They make LOTS of friends.

 

 COMMENT 538946 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 01:13 PM

Cantwell's has delicious food that can easily be taken out for a picnic...they'll even heat up deli items for you before you leave (at least at the Summerland storefront).

 

 COMMENT 539015 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 02:37 PM

Find a picnic table in the shade at Goleta beach. It's the coolest place to be on a hot day.

 

 COMMENT 539094 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 04:30 PM

lol 942 i make friends every time i go to the beach. Dogs love chicharrons....

 

 SHORELINE agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 04:34 PM

We moved here from L.A. but before we did, we spent many weekends here for fun & relaxation. One weekend we asked a man riding a bike on State Street where locals go for picnic food and he told us about Cantwells. It became our favorite place to get picnic food. That was 19 years ago and we still love to get our picnic food there. And although we now live here, we still feel like we're on vacation!

 

 SBSURFERLIFE agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 04:42 PM

Agree with most of the posters here. Go to Cantwells, grab some sandwiches and walk the few blocks to Alice Keck Park Park

[yes commenters I know it's really called Alice Keck Memorial Gardens but let us have our park park fun ok?]

 

 COMMENT 539112 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 04:54 PM

Ortega park usually has picnickers, also under the chromatic gate and the public park in front of the ┬┐red lion?

 

 COMMENT 539136 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 05:21 PM

Ortega park?? There is alot of nice places to go!!

 

 COMMENT 539221P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-24 10:52 PM

Pick up ready-made salads/sandwiches, etc at either Gelsons or Lazy Acres and head to Shoreline Park or Elings Park.

 

 COMMENT 539230P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 02:06 AM

How to choose between all these great ideas? Sound so good! I had a breeze close to Park park, but the beach must've been wonderful.
I'm happy with nibbling fruit, veg, cheese & plain crackers, sometimes with some salumi (normally from Trader Joe's, I eat that way all the time), but I too love S. Coast Deli sandwiches (wish they were open later & served their great breakfast sandwiches all day) and Cantwell's. Gelson's too, but I don't go often, & am not familiar with Lazy Acres. But they have those wonderful dry oil-cured olives -- don't forget the olives with the picnic. Huge fat splurge would be a delicious indulgent dip from TJ's like spinach or the pecan blue cheese. Or creamy blue cheese, or brie. There's always healthier hummus, and should be on the table anyway.

Treat yourself in winter, especially if you have a fire place or fire pit, and do the same thing. Even on a towel or blanket on the living room floor. Then you can add a bottle or two of wine.

OP, want to tell us what you did? I'm sure it was lovely.

 

 COMMENT 539232P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 02:25 AM

sorry about the double post, I asked Ed to delete one. I must be hungry for a second dinner.

 

 COMMENT 539235P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 03:49 AM

I lose my appetite in the heat until at least sundown or late night. I had a black bean pupusa and queso fresco for lunch, then nibbles. Got a tooth abscess too, so...

Favorites: in season tomatoes with mayo, maybe herbed, in a sandwich or straight up, avocados, tofu,all the other picnic foods I mentioned. Cottage cheese "salad" with vinaigrette, pepper, dried herb sprinkles and diced veg: scallion, tomato, summer squash and/or sweet little thin-skinned "burpless" Persian cukes that TJ's sells. Chilled poached salmon with caper or dill mayo. Rotisserie chicken is convenient, edible (used to like it more). Chilled poached chicken (cooler than roasting) with some kind of sauce. All good for picnics, just keep them on ice. Cold japanese noodles with veggies! Itsuki has 6 on their menu. the PERFECT summer meal.

I talk a good meal, but I eat quesadillas the way kids eat PB&J. I'll wait til it cools for a good, bloody/bloody good, bone-in rib eye, lamb chop, lamb shanks and oxtails. Mmmm.

 

 COMMENT 539255 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 07:21 AM

C'est Cheese

 

 COMMENT 539300P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 08:48 AM

Just tried the new C'est Cheese deli which has take-out or eat-in. Everything was fantastic!!! Can't wait to go back and try something else.

 

 LOUWHO? agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 10:45 AM

Goodland Kitchen in Goleta has ready to go items made with tons of fresh local produce. Goleta beach is a great place for a picnic!

 

 COMMENT 539560P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 06:30 PM

Take Playa Azul to the beach or Shoreline Park. Cheese enchiladas, rice, guacamole, chips. Burritos. Yum!

 

 AGENTSME agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-25 10:27 PM

Pick a great spot like the beach, a park (Alice Keck, Riviera), The Mission Lawn, the Harbor..... and then call Rusty's and have them deliver a awesome pizza or some chicken wings or salad and garlic bread and enjoy a lovely evening (without having to cook or clean up :-))

 

48% of comments on this page were made by Edhat Community Members.

 

 

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