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Community Profile: Favorite locations in Loomis reflect town’s friendliness

By Tinka Davi

A sign along Horseshoe Bar Road welcomes visitors to Loomis.
A sign along Horseshoe Bar Road welcomes visitors to Loomis. Ed Andersen

What do the locals like about Loomis?

“People love Loomis because it has a friendly, small-town feel,” said Jenny Knisley, executive director of the Loomis Basin Chamber of Commerce.

A diner, drug store and fruit sheds are a few favorite destinations downtown.

Taylor’s is an old-fashioned burger and shake shop with two locations. The first Taylor’s, a drive-in, opened nine years ago, the diner downtown a few years later.

Taylor’s features burgers and shakes - many, many flavors of shakes.

The favorites?

“Whatever you want,” Suzanne Taylor said. There are lots to choose from. We have 345 different milk shakes and malts.”

For burgers, it’s the old-fashioned cheeseburger.

An old-style soda fountain is located in the Main Leader Drug Store on Taylor Road. Pharmacist/owner Gordon Takemoto said his father opened the store in 1945 where the Subway store is now. It moved to Taylor Road in 1955.

“The soda fountain was brought down the center of Taylor Road with pipes underneath,” said Takemoto.

The soda fountain offers a variety of sandwiches - tuna, egg salad, ham and cheese, plus ice cream sodas, sundaes, banana splits, milk shakes and malts, he said.

The Fruit Sheds, which feature a variety of gifts, art, wines and more, and the Blue Goose, site of several events, are popular destinations, as is High Hand Nursery and Café on Taylor Road.

The Blue Goose event center is ground zero for Loomis, said resident Roger Smith. “Blue Goose and High Hand Nursery put Loomis on the map.”

Knisley said exciting things have been happening in Loomis lately.

“Popie Wines has a new tasting room at the Blue Goose Fruit Shed and Loomis Basin Brewing Co. is adding a second location in downtown Loomis.”

The Loomis Basin Gastropub is opening this summer on Taylor Road next to the Loomis Train Station and Taylors.

“We are also very excited to have a Farmers Market coming into town at the High Hand Nursery parking lot on Thursdays.”

Several upcoming events in Loomis include a Community Yard Sale May 7; the Loomis Art Loop May 7-8 when professional artists open their studios for a free, self-guided tour; the Townsmen Car Show May 21 at the Loomis Train Depot; and the Blues, Burgers and Brews June 15, with music, barbecued burgers, local libations and vendors.

Although it’s not an original Loomis landmark, Smith and his wife, Irene, live in a historic home - the former Dredgemaster’s house, built in 1906, for the Natomas Mining Company, Folsom.

The first and second floors were moved separately from Folsom to a Loomis hilltop in the mid-1980s. The Smiths bought it in 1999.

“I used to be in real estate and when we were driving through Loomis we saw the open home sign. It was like ‘serendipity.’ We are house rescuers and buy things other people don’t. We immediately knew there was value there,” Irene said.

The Smiths spent six months repairing, repainting and refurbishing the house and redoing the landscape.

It has a round turret where Roger Smith has his office, formal dining and living rooms plus a separate guest house.

The property is currently for sale.

The Smiths are ready for their next move, this time to a motor home and travel.

Typical of people Knisley described, the Smiths like Loomis for its small-town, rural feel.

“There’s a lot of agriculture around us and we enjoy the rural feeling of vineyards and orchards, the trees and the native landscape.”

Knisley said a new-home community, the Villages at Loomis, is being considered.

Todd Lowell, CEO of Lowell Development for the Villages, said the mixed-use project will undergo hearings before the Loomis Planning Commission and the Town Council. Plans call for 300 lots, 125 apartments and 5,500 square feet of retail.

“What’s important to me is that there will be 10 acres of open spaces with trails for bicycles and pedestrians plus a major new road to alleviate traffic.”

Irene Smith pointed out another community of custom homes and vineyards, Sierra de Montserrat, which she can see from her hilltop.

As for resale, 48 homes are on the market in Loomis with prices from $299,900 to $2,895,000, according to MetroList Pro.

The history of Loomis dates back to 1861 when the Placer post office opened. The area developed over the years and the town was incorporated in 1984.

That’s when residents voted to preserve local control and preserve the “small-town” character and historic structures including High Hand and the Blue Goose.

Tinka Davi is a freelance writer and editor based in Folsom.

Fast Facts

Where: 24 miles northeast of Sacramento

Size: 7.3 square miles

Population: 6,699

County: Placer

Established: 1850

Incorporated: Dec. 17, 1984 as the Town of Loomis

Government: Council-Manager

UPCOMING FEATURES

The Community Profiles spotlight Sacramento-area cities and neighborhoods weekly. This schedule is subject to change:

▪ West Sacramento, May 7

▪ Rocklin, May 14

▪ Rancho Murieta, May 21

▪ Campus Commons, May 28

▪ Cameron Park, June 4

▪ Gold River, June 11

▪ Carmichael, June 18

▪ East Sacramento, June 25

▪ Elk Grove/Laguna, July 2

▪ El Dorado Hills, July 9

▪ Sierra Oaks, July 16

▪ Land Park, July 23

▪ Folsom, July 30

▪ Woodland, Aug. 6

▪ Granite Bay, Aug. 13

▪ Arden Arcade, Aug. 20

▪ Rancho Cordova, Aug. 27

TO ADVERTISE:

Julie Robledo, resale homes,

(916) 321-1295, jrobledo@sacbee.com

Roger Tafoya, new homes,

(916) 321-1373, rtafoya@sacbee.com

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