36 minutes in North Concord

The North Concord BART Station with Mount Diablo in the distance. Photo courtesy of BART staff.
The North Concord BART Station runs along the west edge of the Concord Naval Weapon Station and welcomes riders with a majestic view of Mount Diablo and, from time-to-time, grazing cows. A visit to this station offers a family friendly walkable or bikeable excursion that starts or ends with cookie dough.
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After exiting the fare gates immediately turn right and connect to the BART Linear Park, a trail that runs parallel to the BART tracks. The paved and landscaped path is protected from traffic and offers an up-close experience to walk or bike alongside a running BART train. Challenge your kids to race the train as it swooshes by.
The trail will take you right to East Olivera Road and Port Chicago Highway where you will turn right and cross the street to the shopping center. Down towards the left end of the shopping center you will find a real treat.
Safe-to-eat cookie dough. Photo courtesy of Out The Dough.
Out The Dough is a family-owned shop offering safe-to-eat cookie dough and cookie dough treats, even dog-friendly cookie dough. Their dough is produced with pasteurized eggs and heat-treated flour, making it safe to eat raw. Better yet, they use locally-sourced ingredients and with flavors like chocolate chip with brown sugar, classic sugar with rainbow sprinkles, peanut butter and fluff, snickerdoodle and more, there is something for everyone even for those with dietary restrictions. Angelo Lonardo, Out The Dough CEO and Co-Founder, tells us they carry over a dozen vegan and gluten-free options. As someone with many food allergies, his go-to treat is peanut butter and Oreo cookie dough with dark chocolate sorbet, topped with coconut whipped cream and vegan sprinkles.
Mural on Don’s Market on the side wall facing Hickory Street. Photo courtesy of Marcos LaFarga.

Three blocks farther down Port Chicago Highway at Hickory Drive is a playful mural at Don’s Market painted by Marcos LaFarga, a local artist who has a design aesthetic that merges typography, graphic design, and photo realistic renderings. LaFarga also has a mural at BART’s Coliseum Station that was the product of a special project with seven students from the African American Male Achievement (AAMA) Program through Oakland Unified School District. 

John F Baldwin Park is located down the road from the mural north of Bonifacio Street and east of Port Chicago Highway with an entrance at Beach Street. It is 18 acres of space with a playground, dog park, and lots of trees. Another option is Pixieland Amusement Park geared towards kids under the age of 8. It is free admission, but the rides require tickets. There is an antique carousel and a mini train depot where you can catch a ride on the Pixieland Express.
If you have more than 36 minutes, take the 1.8-mile walk to Concord Disc Golf Course or the Solano Swap Meet at the West Wind Drive-In and Public Market. The market is held on Saturdays and Sundays and offers endless rows of collectibles, home goods, fresh produce, toys, clothing and live entertainment.
Fresh produce vendor at Solano Swap Meet. Photo courtesy of West Wind Drive-In and Public Market.
BART pro tip: If heading to North Concord from the Oakland/Walnut Creek direction, be sure to sit or stand on the right-hand side of the train (facing the direction the train is heading). After you pass Pleasant Hill Station keep an eye out the window for our Concord Yard where you will spy rows and rows of BART trains lined up. Let the kids know this is where the trains sleep at night. You might even spot the train car wash while whishing by.
BART’s Concord Yard as seen from a train. Photo courtesy of BART staff.

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