Some downtown landmarks are showing their colors as a delegation from the NBA begins a tour of Sacramento today, trying to determine whether the city is a viable pro basketball market.
At the Sheraton Grand Hotel, soft purple lighting lit up the large windows looking out on to J Street. Inside, the bar will be serving purple sangrias on purple napkins.
A few blocks away, the pillars of the iconic Memorial Auditorium were lit in purple Wednesday night. And at the U.S. Bank Tower on Capitol Mall, the LED lights were also aglow in purple.
Window displays at the Downtown Sacramento Partnership and Convention and Visitors Bureau were jumping on the Kings theme, too.
It's part of a movement to show the NBA that there is fan support for the Kings.
Several downtown restaurants and bars are offering specials to patrons dressed in purple today.
The Esquire/IMAX Theatre on K Street is giving free popcorn to those dressed in purple. Ella, Strings Express, deVere's Irish Pub, the Melting Pot and 3 Fires Lounge have Kings-themed specials as well.
At Ettore's European Bakery and Café on Fair Oaks Boulevard, it's a sweet tribute to the Kings: 250 free cupcakes made of chocolate mousse sponge cake topped with purple buttercream icing, along with hand-cut white crowns dusted with gold powder.
"All our staff is wearing purple," manager Meggan Ravazzolo told The Bee's Tony Bizjak. "We wanted to create something fun to create interest in keeping the kings in Sacramento. People with Kings signs are walking in the door. It's a super positive turnout. People loves Ettore's and people love the Kings. We have people yelling, 'We love the Sac Kings.'"
On J Street in midtown, two big signs in the windows of Signs Now are urging the Kings to stay put.
"We want to show that businesses are behind the Kings and we want to see them stay," store manager Roy Gonzalez said.
Toua Thao, 32, and Jocelynne Martin of Signsnow stand in front of a banner Thao made to support the Kings. Photo by Paul Kitagaki Jr. firstname.lastname@example.org