by / Wednesday, 25 June 2014 / Published in Community Information

Campbell is another charming town where you can stop for shopping, clubbing and dining or pass by on your way to the Santa Cruz mountain vineyards. Although not a major technology city like many of its neighbors, Campbell is the original home of eBay and of its creator, Pierre Omidyar. Settled in 1851 by hay farmer Benjamin Campbell, whose original 160 acres of apricots and prunes today comprise Campbell’s historic downtown, which offers pedestrian friendly streets with fun shops, cafes and pubs. Downtown Campbell has become one of the valley’s emerging nightlife destinations, with DJ music and dancing at the Cardiff Lounge, revelry at Katie Bloom’s, live music at the King’s Head and the conversion of the Gaslamp Theater into an ultralounge. There’s also a wide range of restaurants from pubs to French cuisine. The historic Ainsley House, an English Tudor-style home built by local canning tycoon John Colpitts Ainsley in the late 1920s, is now called the Campbell Historical Museum, featuring period furnishings and docent-led tours. The adjacent carriage house is home to the Wyland R. Morgan Gallery, which hosts various exhibits, a video on Campbell’s history and a gift shop. The surrounding gardens, based on the original 1926 sketches of San Francisco landscape architect Emerson Knight, are impressive for their color and variety. The Campbell Community Center, a converted high school now on the National Register of Historic Places, offers a skateboarding park, concerts, plays and sports facilities for locals and visitors. Each May, downtown Campbell hosts the two-day civic festival with rides, 250 food and crafts booths and a tribute to the veritable dried fruit that played such an important role in Campbell’s history.

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