It’s a weekend and you find yourself bored after having finished a cram study session for a midterm and the homework to follow. Soon, you find yourself bored trying to figure out what to do. Where video games fail, and fresh air gets stale, it is time to explore the city that you call home out here in Merced.

Merced is a quaint little town, that can fall short in hustle and bustle of city life, but it gives you time to appreciate and take note of what the town has to offer. Sure the mall may be small, and downtown consists of a few buildings, but it’s what’s there that will surprise you.

Are you an artist? Painter, crafter, dress-maker, cosplayer? Out by the mall there is a Michaels for all your artsy needs. Need some fabric for clothes? One block over where the 99 cent store is, there is also a Joanne’s Fabric store. Looking for power tools or foam for cosplay armor? There is a Harbor Freight by the Food Maxx.

If crafting isn’t your thing, head over to downtown to enjoy some local eateries. Coffee Bandits is an indie-styled coffee shop with its own set of coffee and tea flavors for the tip of your tongue, and a taste for the eyes. Coffee Bandits showcases local artwork and home made trinkets that make great gifts. If coffee isn’t up to your speed, maybe try out J&R Tacos. You may have tried the food carts out on campus, but nothing compares to the official restaurant. It’s a small shop, but big on flavor.

A little ways down Main Street, hidden behind Pinocchio’s Restaurant there is The Arcane Lab. At this shop, you can buy supplies for your tabletop needs. Dungeons and Dragons books, dice, cards for Yu-Gi-Oh, Pokemon, and Magic The Gathering. Regularly, this shop holds Magic tournaments and dungeons and dragons nights.

If you’re not in the mood for dice rolling, then head over to Red Sky to feast your eyes upon some comic books. Red Sky caters to many tastes of comic books, from the mainstream of Marvel and DC to the indie artworks of Vertigo and Image. Red Sky comics caters to the eyes for art. Alongside comics, they also sell Magic card booster packs and hold events regularly.

Looking to rest your eyes and let your ears take places? Right next door to Red Sky is Tiger Dagger Records. This little music shop is a hot stop for the indie scene. Music here ranges from the mainstream to the local artists and every rock in-between.

Feeling a little devious? Further ways down, near the bank there is a shop for “special” desires. This shop provides for whatever kinky, sensual, or exciting things you need to freshen up life in the bedroom. They have a small selection for him and her and some garments to appease the eyes *wink*.

Merced is our little town away from home. It may not have everything you’re used to, but it does have some really fun finds to keep you entertained while you study. Have any interesting or unique finds? Share in the comments below!


Picture Credits: Pacific Boychoir Academy & Merced Sun Star


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