Santa Rosa, California

From Academic Kids

Santa Rosa is the county seat of Sonoma County, California. As of July 1, 2003, the population was estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau to be 153,386 residents.



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Location of Santa Rosa, California

Santa Rosa is located at 38°26'55" North, 122°42'17" West (38.448611, -122.704646)Template:GR.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 104.6 km² (40.4 mi²). 103.9 km² (40.1 mi²) of it is land and 0.6 km² (0.2 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 0.62% water.

Santa Rosa lies along the U.S. Highway 101 corridor approximately 50 miles north of San Francisco via the Golden Gate Bridge. The city lies on the Santa Rosa Plain; its eastern extremities stretch into The Valley of the Moon (Sonoma Valley), while its western edge abuts the largely-rural rolling hills of western Sonoma County. To the north and to the south, a relatively developed corridor along Highway 101 leads to neighboring towns of Windsor and Rohnert Park, respectively.


The population of Santa Rosa was estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau to be 153,386 residents as of July 1, 2003. That was an increase of 0.5 percent from a year earlier and an increase of 3.7 percent from the 2000 Census. That is a rate of increase that, if continued, would double the population in 59 years.

According to the 2000 Census, Santa Rosa's population was 147,595 residents, a 30.3 percent increase from the 113,313 residents in 1990. During the previous decade, the population increased by 37.1 percent from 82,658 residents in 1980.

Per the 2000 Census, the population density is 1,420.1/km² (3,678.3/mi²). There are 57,578 housing units at an average density of 554.0/km² (1,434.9/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 77.60% White, 2.15% African American, 1.42% Native American, 3.84% Asian, 0.26% Pacific Islander, 10.28% from other races, and 4.44% from two or more races. 19.19% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 56,036 households out of which 30.9% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.9% are married couples living together, 11.0% have a female householder with no husband present, and 37.3% are non-families. 27.8% of all households are made up of individuals and 11.9% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.57 and the average family size is 3.14.

In the city, the population is spread out with 24.3% under the age of 18, 9.5% from 18 to 24, 30.0% from 25 to 44, 22.3% from 45 to 64, and 13.9% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 36 years. For every 100 females there are 95.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 91.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $50,931, and the median income for a family is $59,659. Males have a median income of $40,420 versus $30,597 for females. The per capita income for the city is $24,495. 8.5% of the population and 5.1% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 9.5% of those under the age of 18 and 4.7% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.


One hour north of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge, Santa Rosa Sonoma County is a popular tourist destination. In addition to wineries and vineyards, Sonoma County's varied landscape includes the popular Russian River Resort Area, the dramatic Sonoma Coast along the Pacific Ocean, and the magnificent redwood trees of Northern California, particularly at Armstrong Woods State Park. Downtown Santa Rosa is a vital shopping, restaurant and theatre district. Also popular with tourists are the neighboring towns of Sonoma, Petaluma, Healdsburg, Sebastopol, Windsor, Calistoga, Guerneville and Bodega Bay.

Performing and visual arts

Santa Rosa has a vibrant arts scene and is home to many influential visual and performing artists. Local facilities include the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), the Sonoma County Museum and numerous art galleries. The annual "ARTrails" event showcases local visual artists around the county, who open their private studios for two weekends in the fall.

The performing arts are well represented with the Santa Rosa Symphony, the Luther Burbank Center for the Performing Arts, the Summer Repertory Theatre, and the 6th Street Playhouse (est. 2005), home of the Santa Rosa Players and the Actors Theatre.

In addition, environmental artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude chose Sonoma County for the construction of their famous 24-mile-long "Running Fence" ( (1976).

Notable natives and residents

Levi Leipheimer

Professional cyclist Levi Leipheimer calls Santa Rosa his home when not racing in Europe. He was a member of the United States Postal Service cycling team that saw Lance Armstrong win the Tour de France. While a domestique with the Postal Service team, he has moved up to team leader with the Gerolsteiner team. He is always competitive with top ten finishes in the Tour and top five performances in the Vuelta de Espana. He still resides in Santa Rosa as well as participates competitively in the UCI Pro Tour which includes the Tour, Giro, and Vuelta.

William Mark Felt

Since 1993, Santa Rosa has been the home of William Mark Felt, who revealed in 2005 that he had been the Washington Post's Watergate source known to the public only as "Deep Throat".

Luther Burbank

Santa Rosa is famous as the home of the horticulturalist, Luther Burbank, who said of Sonoma County, "I firmly believe, from what I have seen, that this is the chosen spot of all this earth as far as Nature is concerned." Burbank lived in Santa Rosa for more than 50 years in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, working to develop new strains of plants and towards improving the world's food supply. During that time, he introduced more than 200 varieties of fruits, vegetables, grains, and ornamental flowers, most notably the Burbank Russet Potato, the Shasta Daisy, and the Santa Rosa Plum. The Luther Burbank Home and Gardens in downtown Santa Rosa has been designated a National Historic Landmark.

Robert Ripley

Santa Rosa is the birthplace of Robert Ripley, creator of Ripley's Believe It or Not!. The "Church of the One Tree", a church built entirely from the wood of a single redwood tree, and popularized by Ripley, stands on the north side of Juilliard Park in downtown Santa Rosa, across from the Luther Burbank Home and Gardens.

Charles M. Schulz

For 50 years, Santa Rosa and Sonoma County was home to Charles M. Schulz the world-famous cartoonist and creator of the beloved comic strip Peanuts. The Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa celebrates his life's work and the art of cartooning. A bronze statue of Charlie Brown and Snoopy stands in Depot Park at the northwest corner of 4th and Wilson Streets in downtown Santa Rosa's Railroad Square District. In 2000, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors rechristened the "Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County Airport" in his honor. The airport's amusing logo features Snoopy with goggles and scarf, taking to the skies on top of his red doghouse.

Film locations

Santa Rosa has served as a location for many major films, including (courtesy of (

  • The Happy Land (1943) Shot in Santa Rosa and Healdsburg.
  • Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Filmed at Santa Rosa Railroad Depot, NWP Engine #140, Old Courthouse Square, Public Library, and McDonald Avenue. Made into a TV-movie in 1991 (eight weeks filming on McDonald Avenue).
  • The Sullivans (1944) Shot on Morgan Street, Santa Rosa.
  • All My Sons (1948) Shot on McDonald Avenue, Santa Rosa.
  • Storm Center (1956) The story of small-town witch-hunting and book-burning used the Santa Rosa Library, with Miss Davis spending six weeks on the location: from the Library's collection of clippings on the film, you can see that she spent a lot of time with the women's clubs and, especially, with real librarian Ruth Hall, and that she made a strong impression on them. Shot mostly at Santa Rosa's Main Library.
  • Pollyanna (1960) The 1960 film was shot at Mableton Mansion, McDonald Ave., Santa Rosa.
  • It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963) The sequence involving the plane and the control tower was shot at the Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa.
  • The Candidate (1972) Shot in Howarth Park, Santa Rosa.
  • Steelyard Blues (1973) Shot in downtown Santa Rosa and Sonoma County Airport.
  • Smile (1975) Shot at the Veteran's Memorial Auditorium and many other locales in and around Santa Rosa.
  • Little Miss Marker (1980) Shot at Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa.
  • Cujo (1983) Locations include Petaluma, Santa Rosa (and Mendocino).
  • Smooth Talk (1985) Locations include Sebastopol, the Gravenstein Highway and Santa Rosa.
  • Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) Locations at Santa Rosa High School and Petaluma.
  • Die Hard II (1990) Scenes shot at Santa Rosa Air Center.
  • Stop! or My Mom Will Shoot (1992) Shot over a four week period at Santa Rosa Air Center (also in L.A. area).

See also

External links


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