Introduction to Riverside, California
Founded in the late 1800's, Riverside is the 11th largest city in California. It is home to nearly 300,000 inhabitants. The metropolitan area comprising Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario has a population of about 3.5 million people. This area is known as "The Inland Empire" because it was once separated from Los Angeles by a large rural expanse. Riverside lies 60 miles east of Los Angeles. The Pacific Ocean is about 35 miles to the southwest
The area was historically very sparsely populated due to its desert like climate. John North, a pro-temperance abolitionist, founded Riverside with the hope of furthering education and culture. At about the same time, naval orange cultivation took off, drawing railroads to the area. The climate, transportation, and innovative water supply, which allowed the orange industry to thrive, also brought easterners escaping their cold winters.
In 2004 Riverside was named one of the "Most Livable Mid-Size Cities" by Partners for Livable Communities. Also in 2004 Riverside-San Bernardino was named one of the "Top 25 Large Cities for Doing Business In" by Inc. Magazine. In 1998 it was one of the Winning Communities for the "All-America City Award" given by the National Civic League.
Only about 10.2 inches of rain fall each year in Riverside. Temperatures reach 90 degrees Fahrenheit an average of 100 days of the year. August daily highs average 95 degrees while daily lows average 64 degrees Fahrenheit. January offers average daily highs of 68 degrees and average daily lows of 43 degrees Fahrenheit.
Fleetwood Enterprises, a Fortune 100 company which manufactures recreational vehicles and manufactured homes is headquartered in Riverside. One of the largest employers is the University of California at Riverside. The economy also includes such industries as wood, plastics, metal fabrication, electrical instruments, and food packaging.Arts and Leisure
Cultural, historical, and leisure attractions include:
- The Riverside Metropolitan Museum
- The Mission Inn
- The Heritage House
- The Riverside Art Museum
- The La Sierra University Museum of Natural History
- The UCR California Museum of Photography
- The California Citrus State Historic Park
- The Blankenship Ballet Company
- The California Riverside Ballet
- The Inland Empire/Riverside County Philharmonic/li>
- The Riverside Community Players
- Cultural and entertainment sights in nearby Los Angeles
- Sports teams, both professional and college, in metropolitan Los Angeles