Visitor Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When is the Peddlers Fair?
A: Always the second Saturday in August in Downtown Benicia.
Q: When is the Fine Arts and Crafts Fair?
A: Always the third Saturday in September in Downtown Benicia.
Q: Where is the "glass beach"?
A: Follow West Sixth south to its dead end at Cove Way. Turn left, go one block to Elane Way. Look for the Public Access sign and follow it to the water.
Q: Do individual artists have open studios? Are certain studios open regular hours?
A: Many of the spaces in the historical Arsenal district are live-work studios; artists are often present in their studios but their studios are not always open to the public. We would encourage you to contact the artists living in the Arsenal and set up an appointment to see their work. There are two annual open studios in the Arsenal: the Benicia Artists Open Studios that occurs in the first weekend of May, and the Arsenal Artists Open Studios that occurs between November and December.
Q: Where are most of the artists located within the Arsenal?
A: Artists are located throughout the Arsenal on Tyler Street and Jackson Street
Q: How long has the Depot at the end of First Street been there?
A: The Depot was brought to Benicia from Banta, which is close to Tracy, via barge on the Strait. It has been in Benicia since 1902.
Q: Did the railroad come down First Street?
A: No, the tracks are next to the Depot, on the Strait side of the building. The trains traveled to the end of the peninsula, where the largest ferries, at that time, carried the entire train across the water to Port Costa, then continued on to Oakland.
Q: How long has Benicia Main Street been housed at the Depot?
A: Since 2003.
Q: Is there anything else housed in the building?
A: Not at this time; the building still needs more restoration.
Q: When was Benicia the state Capitol?
A: Benicia Capitol State Historic Park is a state park. The park is dedicated to California's third Capitol building, where the California State Legislature and bureaucracy convened from February 3, 1853 to February 24, 1854. It is the only pre-Sacramento Capitol that survives. It is open Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Q: Where did Jack London "hang out" while he lived in Benicia?
A: The Jurgensen Old Corner Saloon, formerly located next to the railroad depot, was a favorite "haunt" for London and provided material for John Barleycorn and Tales of the Fish Patrol. (The Saloon no longer exists near the waterfront; but the second story of the building was moved to West E and First streets approximately 10 years ago.)
Q: Was Benicia an industrial area in its early days?
A: Yes. There were tanneries, canneries, creameries, equipment manufacturing, shipbuilding and other businesses.
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