Latest News

Student Lookout: Nisene Marks, upcoming events and BOGO cookie

Good day, Slugs and Seahawks,

Many of you know me, but some of you are new here. Therefore, allow me to introduce myself. I’m Max Chun, general assignment correspondent for Lookout Santa Cruz and your host of Student Lookout … please clap.

Jokes aside, I sincerely hope you all had a great summer. You either started classes at Cabrillo College on Aug. 29 or are starting at UCSC on Sept. 22. Either way, you’re probably stressed.

Well, fret not, since I’ll be coming at you every Friday with the latest events, news, and food recs you need to know about. With any luck, that will give you some ways to get away from it all when you need to.

If you are a student and haven’t signed up for your FREE Lookout Membership yet, enter your phone number below to register. Not only will you get unlimited access to all of Lookout, but you’ll also receive Student Lookout text alerts every Friday with exclusive deals, local recommendations, puzzles and more. So what are you waiting for?

Let’s kick off the new school year then, shall we?

Deals Download


Check out some highlighted discounts just for students:

Don’t forget to have your student ID to get the discount.

Note: Many places — particularly in downtown Santa Cruz — offer student discounts, so just try asking at any store and you just might get 10% off!

What’s the best student deal you’ve found? Shoot us an email to let us know at studentlookout@lookoutlocal.com.

deal of the week banner

Pacific Cookie Company: Now through Thursday, Sept. 22, get a Buy One Get One cookie at Pacific Cookie Company (located in downtown Santa Cruz). Just show this screen to redeem!

cookie coupon

➤ Want to share these deals with your friends? Have them sign up for Student Lookout texts with this link.

Eats on a budget

I didn’t pay much attention to Taqueria Jalapeños y Pupuseria for a while, honestly. I had my go-to taquerias and stuck to them. However, Jalapeños eventually lured me into its iron grip with one of its specialties: the pupusas. Stuffed with meat, veggies, or a mix of both, the somewhat dense, tortilla-like food is a delicious, quick meal that is appropriate for just about any time of the day. Each one is only about $4.50, too, and as few as two can go a long way.

If you love eating, cooking, and reading about food, be sure to check out the work from our local food expert, Lily Belli. This week, she was excited to share news that Lalita Kaewsawang of Hanloh Thai Food in Scotts Valley will take over as chef at the downtown Santa Cruz wine bar-bookstore hybrid Bad Animal. Lily’s a big fan of Hanloh, so if you like Thai food, check out Bad Animal this fall!

Inside Santa Cruz: Nisene Marks, Bridge Creek Trail & Maple Falls

a girl crosses a creek in a forest
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Recommended by former Lookout intern Maren Detlefs

I’ve gone to the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park for most of my life. It’s a beautiful place to hike, ride your bike and appreciate the staggering natural beauty of the Santa Cruz Mountains. It’s located in Aptos. You have to pay for parking and you’ll want to get there fairly early most days to make sure you get a spot. Most of the time I take the main fire road. It’s wide, flat and well shaded, which makes it an easy trail for walking or biking.

Last weekend, I looked into a new route — the Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls, which takes you past one of the most well-preserved historical lumbering sites in California before it ends at a waterfall.

The trails at Nisene Marks can get a little chaotic once you get too far off the beaten path, so I expected it to be a bit challenging. To my surprise, the trail started out pretty flat. We went through several environments, from redwoods to stunning oak forests. The Bridge Creek historic site did not disappoint, and I highly recommend going to check it out. Not long after, we suddenly found ourselves scrambling over boulders, hoping streams, and climbing up fallen logs trying to keep track of the path. You know the part in “The Hobbit” when Thorin and company are traveling through Mirkwood trying to keep track of the path? It felt a bit like that. When we finally made it to the end of the trail, the reward of seeing the waterfall was well worth the difficult terrain. The alcove it flowed through was peaceful and moss-covered — a wonderful spot to relax for a bit. And then the trek back began.

The hike took about two hours total and was one of the most fun and visually engaging routes I’ve found in Santa Cruz. I’ll definitely be returning and bringing friends on this adventure.

Puzzle Center


Test out your local knowledge with this Santa Cruz attractions crossword puzzle.

Puzzle created by former Lookout intern Aidan Warzecha-Watson.

Around Town - Events


Did you know that we have an events calendar? BOLO, which stands for Be On the Lookout, is our hub for the best events in the county. See all the listings here.

Here are upcoming events we think students need to know about:

Friday - Sunday, Sept. 16-25, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
CommonGround: A Festival of Place-Inspired Outdoor Work
Starting this Friday and continuing through next Sunday, CommonGround is a new festival set to run every other year, alternating with Frequency, an art-and-technology event that debuted in 2021. CommonGround spans various locations throughout Santa Cruz County, and focuses on temporary, performative art projects in rural, urban and architectural spaces. The installations across the area aim to connect people, stories and the world around us. The best part: It’s mostly free, with only supporting exhibits and some festival performances requiring tickets.

Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 16-17, 11:55 p.m. - 2 a.m.
Del Mar Midnight Movie: “Beetlejuice”
Get spooky season started a little early with a not-so-spooky, but classic, Halloween flick. Plenty has been said about “Beetlejuice” at this point, and I’m sure you all get the idea. 1980s “camp” with Michael Keaton donning terrible outfits, terrible makeup and terrible teeth. Ease your way into the horror movie season with this goofy throwback.

Sunday, Sept. 18, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Downtown Santa Cruz Makers Market
The makers market returns once again. These take place every third Sunday and provide a great opportunity to support local, independently owned businesses. The stands that make up the market display a wide range of locally crafted goods from art and jewelry to local ingredients. Find some nice housewarming gifts for yourself as you move in! Check out the full list of participating vendors here.

➤ Want more? If you’re still looking for great things to do, check out Wallace Baine’s Weekender here.

More local jobs: Browse more open positions on the Lookout Job Board.

Game Time - College Athletics


UC Santa Cruz: The women’s volleyball team wasted no time getting to business down south. The Slugs swept Whittier to begin a five-match Southern California road trip and is 9-2 heading into action Friday in Thousand Oaks. The team also announced that it will host a one-day Elite Camp for high school players on Oct. 9. Players will get the chance to practice, interact, and learn from current members of the UCSC women’s volleyball team.

Cabrillo College: The Cabrillo football team is off to a rocky start, losing its first two games to De Anza College and Feather River College by scores of 24-0 and 70-14, respectively. The Seahawks look to turn that around against visiting Yuba College this Saturday.

Meanwhile, the women’s soccer team seeks its second win of the season against visiting Folsom Lake College on Friday evening.

One last thing …


Did you know? Did you know that for much of its history, UCSC utilized a unique evaluation system instead of grades? There were no letter grades at UCSC until the fall of 2001, as professors used narrative evaluations to determine if a student was successful in their course. These evaluations have been phased out, but students may still request one if they would like, and may appeal if denied.

Students at Quarry Plaza at UC Santa Cruz
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Well, that’ll do it for the first Fall 2022 edition of Student Lookout. It’s great to start invading your text messages weekly again.

Catch you all here next week!

— Max

If you have recommendations on places we should feature next week, pass them along and we’ll send you a free Lookout T-shirt. Email your ideas to student@lookoutlocal.com.