Saturday, November 18, 2006 – The weekend heading into Thanksgiving finds downtown Riverside in a state of transformation as finishing touches are being made to holiday decorations ahead of the annual Festival of Lights, which officially begins the Friday after turkey day.
This year, a new addition to an expanded FOL had workers assembling a compact ice rink. Slated to open in time for next weekend’s FOL kickoff ceremony, the rink is situated on the Main Street Pedestrian Mall between Mission Inn and University avenues.
Oh, and during our stroll around downtown we noticed that the long-awaited Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is now open at the base of the California Tower. CB&TL joins fellow coffee purveyor Starbucks in joining the downtown mix.
In other news, the Mission Inn Coffee Co. has been officially replaced by Bella Trattoria Italian Bistro. Also, the small band stage outside City Hall is no more (likely in preparation for the eventual re-opening of Ninth Street thru the pedestrian mall). And the massive rebuilding of the 60/91/I-215 freeways interchange continues to move along.
Flash: Out & About slideshow