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Overview

Introduction to Santa Cruz, California

Situated on the northern part of Monterey Bay, the California city of Santa Cruz lies about 30 miles southwest of San Jose and 74 miles south of San Francisco. Incorporated in 1866, the city is the county seat for the County of Santa Cruz. The principal industries of Santa Cruz are tourism, agriculture, manufacturing, and education (University of California at Santa Cruz is located here). The city's proximity to Silicon Valley has in recent years also brought an influx of workers in high-tech industries into Santa Cruz and its surrounding towns.

Santa Cruz was founded in 1769 by Spanish explorer Don Gaspar de Portola, who named the area after the Spanish name for "Holy Cross." In the late 1800s, agriculture, logging, lime processing and commercial fishing were the thriving industries. By the turn of the century, tourism took hold as a major industry and prospered to this day, thanks to the city's scenic beauty, mild climate, abundant sunshine and 29 miles of coastline. The quintessential beach town often referred to as "Surf City" (despite the fact that Huntington Beach trademarked the moniker), Santa Cruz lays claim to being the place where Hawaiian royalty first introduced surfing to the U.S. mainland.

Things to do in Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is famous for its beaches and for the sport of surfing. The Santa Cruz Surfing Museum, housed in the Mark Abbott Memorial Lighthouse, traces more than a century worth of surfing history associated with Santa Cruz. Museum visitors enjoy a spectacular view of the city and the Monterey Bay while overlooking the famed surfing site known as Steamer Lane. The Santa Cruz Boardwalk, the West Coast's last remaining seaside amusement park, offers more than 30 rides, arcades, food, an indoor miniature golf course and over 15 gift shops. The Cocoanut Grove complex hosts trade shows, conventions, conferences, parties, banquets and more. The Santa Cruz Wharf is famous for its views of marine mammals, its fishing and other recreational activities.

Included among the cultural offerings in Santa Cruz is the annual summer festival held by Shakespeare Santa Cruz. Typical performances include two Shakespeare plays and one other play. Some of the performances take place in a unique outdoor space among the redwoods. Santa Cruz is also home to the Cabrillo Music Festival. Local Santa Cruz museums include the Natural History Museum and the Surfing Museum.

The nearby city of San Jose, located only a half-hour away, is home to a number of its own attractions. A few of the more prominent are the Winchester Mystery House, the Tech Museum of Innovation, the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum, the Children's Discovery Museum and the History Museum of San Jose. Sports fans can see Minor League Baseball action (Triple-A's San Jose Giants), Arena Football League action (San Jose SaberCats) and the National Hockey League's San Jose Sharks.

Fans of alternative sports will recognize Santa Cruz as home to the De Laveaga Disc Golf Course, which hosts several PDGA (Professional Disc Golf Association) tournaments, including the annual Masters Cup. De Laveaga was the host venue for the disc golf and discathon World Disc Games overall event held in July 2005. The event was sanctioned by the WFDF (World Flying Disc Federation).

Demographics

People

Total Population63,993
Male Share of the Population48.9%
Female Share of the Population51.1%
Senior Citizens11.1%
Employed Population 16+30,911
Age of the Population29

Families

% of people married28.6%
Average household size2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher52.1%
Median Earnings25+$41,980
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification$19,234
Median Earnings With High School Degree$29,635

Wealth

Median Family Income$96,426
% Above Poverty Level75.6%
% Below Poverty Level24.4%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time24 minutes
% Working from Home6.5%
% Walking and Biking to Work19.4%
% Using Public Transportation6.5%

Housing

People Living Alone33.1%
Median Gross Rent$1,634
Median House Value$750,600

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American)38%
Irish12.5%
German12%
English9.7%
Italian7.5%
French Except Basque2.8%
Scottish2.4%
Russian2.2%
Polish2.2%
Dutch1.9%
Swedish1.9%
Norwegian1.7%
Portuguese1%
Welsh0.8%
Arab0.7%
Swiss0.7%
Danishn0.7%
Czech0.6%
Iranian0.5%
Greek0.5%
Turkish0.4%
Hungarian0.4%
Canadian0.4%
Croatian0.3%
Ukrainian0.3%
Finnish0.2%
Romanian0.2%
Slovak0.2%
African0.2%
Austrian0.2%
West Indian0.2%
US/American0.2%
Australian0.2%
Lithuanian0.2%
Egyptian0.1%
Latvian0.1%
Israeli0.1%
Haitian0.1%
Estonian0.1%
Lebanese0.1%
Ethiopian0.1%
Palestinian0.1%
Brazilian0.1%
Serbian0.1%
New Zealand0.1%
Belgian0.1%
Moroccan0.1%
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Santa Cruz Almanac

CategoryValue
County Santa Cruz County
Standard Zip Codes95062, 95064, 95065, 95060, 95066
P.O. Box Zip Codes95061, 95063, 95067
Phone Area Codes831
Time ZoneAmerica/Los_Angeles
Approximate Latitude36.97
Approximate Longitude-122.02

Santa Cruz Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

StationSANTA CRUZ
Distance2.6 miles
Jan Temp40 to 61 F
Apr Temp44 to 69 F
Jul Temp53 to 75 F
Oct Temp48 to 73 F
Annual Precip30.6 inches
StationWATSONVILLE WATERWORKS
Distance14.8 miles
Jan Temp39 to 61 F
Apr Temp45 to 68 F
Jul Temp53 to 72 F
Oct Temp48 to 72 F
Annual Precip23.2 inches
StationGILROY
Distance25.6 miles
Jan Temp39 to 60 F
Apr Temp47 to 73 F
Jul Temp56 to 88 F
Oct Temp50 to 79 F
Annual Precip20.6 inches

Nearby Cities and Towns

LocationPopulationMedian Family Income
Capitola10,158$77,362
Los Gatos30,709$161,987
Monte Sereno3,551$250
Saratoga31,013$199,286
Scotts Valley11,892$126,130
Watsonville53,452$54,491

Santa Cruz Public Libraries

Santa Cruz Public Libraries
117 UNION STREET
Santa Cruz, California
(831) 427-7706

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More Information for Librarians

Santa Cruz Hospitals

Sutter Maternity And Surgery Center Of Santa Cruz
(Non-profit)
2900 Chanticleer Avenue
Dominican Hospital-santa Cruz/soquel
(Non-profit)
1555 Soquel Drive
(831) 462-7700
Telecare Santa Cruz Phf
(Government - Local)
2250 Soquel Ave

Santa Cruz Public Schools

Bay View Elementary
1231 Bay St.
ZIP: 95060
Primary
Total Enrollment 566
Bonny Doon Elementary
1492 Pine Flat Rd.
ZIP: 95060
Primary
Total Enrollment 146
Brook Knoll Elementary
151 Brook Knoll Dr.
ZIP: 95060
Primary
Total Enrollment 520
Mission Hill Middle
425 King St.
ZIP: 95060
Middle
Total Enrollment 641
Pacific Collegiate Charter
255 Swift St.
ZIP: 95060
High
Total Enrollment 508
Santa Cruz County Community
400 Encinal St.
ZIP: 95060
High
Total Enrollment 582
Santa Cruz County Court
400 Encinal St.
ZIP: 95060
High
Total Enrollment 89
Santa Cruz County Rop
400 Encinal St.
ZIP: 95060
High
Santa Cruz County Special Education
400 Encinal St.
ZIP: 95060
Other
Total Enrollment 103
Santa Cruz High
415 Walnut Ave.
ZIP: 95060
High
Total Enrollment 1031
Westlake Elementary
1000 High St.
ZIP: 95060
Primary
Total Enrollment 630
Alternative Family Education
840 N. Branciforte Ave.
ZIP: 95062
Other
Total Enrollment 166
Ark Independent Studies
840 N. Branciforte Ave.
ZIP: 95062
High
Total Enrollment 60
Branciforte Middle
315 Poplar St.
ZIP: 95062
Middle
Total Enrollment 488
Costanoa Continuation High
840 N. Branciforte Ave.
ZIP: 95062
High
Total Enrollment 104
Cypress Charter High
2039 Merrill St.
ZIP: 95062
High
Total Enrollment 152
Del Mar Elementary
1959 Merrill St.
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 430
Gault Elementary
1320 Seabright Ave.
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 415
Green Acres Elementary
966 Bostwick Ln.
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 397
Harbor High
300 La Fonda Ave.
ZIP: 95062
High
Total Enrollment 1032
Live Oak Elementary
1916 Capitola Rd.
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 349
Ocean Alternative Education Center
984 Bostwick Ln., Ste. 6
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 93
Santa Cruz City Elementary Alternative Education-monarch
840 N. Branciforte Ave.
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 99
Sequoia Academy
319 La Fonda Ave.
ZIP: 95062
High
Shoreline Middle
855 17th Ave.
ZIP: 95062
Middle
Total Enrollment 538
Special Education Preschool
984 Bostwick Ln., Ste. 1
ZIP: 95062
Tierra Pacifica Charter
986 Bostwick Ln.
ZIP: 95062
Primary
Total Enrollment 149
De Laveaga Elementary
1145 Morrissey Blvd.
ZIP: 95065
Primary
Total Enrollment 650
Happy Valley Elementary
3125 Branciforte Dr.
ZIP: 95065
Primary
Total Enrollment 134
Santa Cruz Gardens Elementary
8005 Winkle Ave.
ZIP: 95065
Primary
Total Enrollment 349

Santa Cruz Private Schools

Brightpath
255 Swift St Bldg 24
ZIP: 95060
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 12
Gateway School
126 Eucalyptus Ave
ZIP: 95060
Elementary
Total Enrollment 248
Georgiana Bruce Kirby Preparatory School
425 Encinal St
ZIP: 95060
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 192
Holy Cross School
150 Emmett St
ZIP: 95060
Elementary
Total Enrollment 195
Mcp Middle & High School
117 Fern St Ste 150
ZIP: 95060
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 18
Santa Cruz Waldorf School
2190 Empire Grade
ZIP: 95060
Elementary
Total Enrollment 141
Spring Hill-advanced School Of Santa Cruz
250 California St
ZIP: 95060
Elementary
Total Enrollment 115
Midtown Montessori
818 N Branciforte Ave
ZIP: 95062
Elementary
Total Enrollment 2
Santa Cruz Childrens School
366 Gault St
ZIP: 95062
Elementary
Total Enrollment 48
The Bay School
5400 Soquel Ave Ste F
ZIP: 95062
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 44
Vhm Christian School
427 Capitola Road Ext
ZIP: 95062
Elementary
Total Enrollment 57
Good Shepherd Catholic School
2727 Mattison Ln
ZIP: 95065
Elementary
Total Enrollment 177
Sources :
Additional Details
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Santa Cruz Colleges
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