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An All-American City
Bakersfield, incorporated in 1898, is located in the County of Kern and is the county seat. The City of Bakersfield covers approximately 111 square miles (metro area is 224 square miles) and is 492 feet above sea level. Located at the southern end of the San Joaquin Valley, it is partially surrounded by three mountain ranges: the Temblor Range to the west, the Tehachapi Range to the south and the Sierra Nevada Range to the east. The Kern River flows through the valley adding a natural beauty to the area. Bakersfield was designated an All-American City in 1990 by the National Civic League.
Education in Bakersfield
Bakersfield has 12 school districts with 56 elementary schools (K-6), 17 junior high schools (7th and 8th ), and 13 high schools, including the newest Ridgeview High in the southwest and Centennial and Liberty High in the northwest. Many more schools at all levels are in the planning and construction phases. The community also has 1 continuation high school, 1 community college, 1 state university, numerous vocational schools, 1 adult school, and 1 college of law.
Culture & Recreation
Bakersfield enjoys a wide variety of entertainment with the Centennial Garden arena, convention center, ice arena, theaters, museums, and art galleries. Bakersfield residents are very active in sports, taking advantage of 2 lakes, 5 private and 7 public golf courses, 5 private and 13 public tennis facilities, 5 private country clubs, 2 roller skating rinks, 3 bowling facilities, 3 auto race tracks and over 50 neighborhood community parks. The Kern River, which flows through the Bakersfield area, offers and adventurous time of whitewater rafting. The community has its own minor league baseball team, (The Bakersfield Blaze), and Ice hockey team, (The Bakersfield Condors), a semi-pro football team, (The Bakersfield Panthers), arena football team (The Bakersfield Blitz), and a soccer park where local, regional, and state tournaments are held. Bakersfield also has over 300 churches and 28 libraries.
Bakersfield has a rich heritage that goes back 8,000 years to the Yokuts Indians who were the first people to settle in the San Joaquin Valley . The valley was plentiful with lakes and rivers. It was a happy hunting ground for the Indians. Some of the early explorers of the land were the Spaniards and the Mexicans, including a Spanish missionary by the name of Father Garces who was the first white man to come into Bakersfield in 1776. Other explorers to the area were men such as Jedediah Strong Smith, the first American, Kit Carson, and John Freemont.
The real growth and development of the town of Bakersfield began with the 1851 discovery of gold in the bed of the Kern River . Another big discovery was oil in 1865. The discovery of gold, oil, and the rich soil brought a cultural diversity to the area. The French introduced sheep ranching and brought Basque sheepherders. The Kern County Land Company introduced cotton. The Chinese came to build the railroads and the Greeks came to work them. The French, Basque, Italians, and Portuguese helped to establish farming south of Bakersfield.
The town of Bakersfield was named after one of its early settlers, Colonel Thomas Baker. The Colonel planted a ten acre parcel of land with alfalfa which was used by travelers to feed their animals when traveling from Visalia to Los Angeles. The field was called Baker's Field. In 1869 he was appointed to survey a formal township and it was suggested the new town be named Bakersfield since it was already known to the travelers as Baker's Field.
Bakersfield is the 13th most populous city in California and the 88th most populous city in the U.S. Kern County is the 14th most populous county in California and the 82nd most populous metropolitan area in the U.S.
Source: Statistical Abstract of the U.S., 1992
Bakersfield is ideally situated, with nearly 60 percent of California’s population to the south and 40 percent to the north. Three major freeways -- Interstate 5 and State Routes 99 and 58 -- lead to the state’s metropolitan areas and onward to Oregon, Arizona, and Nevada. With State Route 99 and Interstate 5 running north and south, driving to Los Angeles, Sacramento, and San Francisco are "straight shots." State Routes 166, 58, and 46 will take you west to the central coast, and it’s an easy drive along State Route 58 east from Route 99 to Las Vegas and beyond.
Scheduled air carrier and commuter airline services are provided at Meadows Field in Bakersfield which services close to 300,000 passengers per year. The airport provides a 10,850-foot primary runway that easily accommodates any type of commercial or military aircraft flown today. It exceeds FAA standards and has a high level of clear-flight days. Flight schedules include daily flights with non-stop service to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Phoenix.
Plans are underway for a new terminal at Meadows Field which is projected to be built by 2004. The new site is near the Seventh Standard Road underpass, just off freeway 99. Currently, a 15,000 sq. ft. office and hanger space is under construction.
Bakersfield Municipal Airport in southeast metropolitan area provides the full range of business, agriculture, recreation, and personal aviation activities with a 4,000-foot runway, associated taxiways, and support facilities.
The new Amtrak station is the 14th busiest in the U.S.
MILEAGE DISTANCES FROM BAKERSFIELD
||Red Rock Canyon
|Las Vegas, NV
||Santa Cruz >
||Sequoia Nat. Park
||Yosemite Nat. Park
BAKERSFIELD WEATHER (AVERAGE TEMPERATURES)
The average rainfall (30 year period) is 5.72 inches per year.
For National Weather Service Information call (559) 584-3752
Bakersfield's temperature tops 100 degrees an average of 38 days a year, yet dips below freezing only 12 days annually. Bakersfield has an average of 223 sunny days per year and 86 cloudy days per year.
|Source: National weather service|
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