Lancaster is turning into a travel spot. It has transformed from the nineteenth century railroad water stop into a city brimming with friendly residents, visitors and plenty of cultural and historical landmarks. If you’re planning a trip to Lancaster, there are a few facts and wacky secrets buried under its charm and beauty that you should know. It seems we’ve piqued your interest, so without further ado, here are a few facts and quirky secrets about Lancaster, worth knowing. Be an informed traveler with these facts-
Image by snolygoster [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Lancaster Geographic and Demographic Fast Facts
- Lancaster is a city located in U.S. state of California.
- It lies in the heart of Antelope Valley and on the northern side of the Los Angeles County.
- It is about 70 miles north of downtown LA.
- Lancaster occupies an area of 94.3 square miles.
- It has a population of over 168,000 as of 2015.
- It is the fifth largest city in the Los Angeles County, as of 2013.
- It is the 31st largest city in the U.S. state of California, as of 2013.
- It is a part of a twin city within the Antelope Valley area- Lancaster-Palmdale. Palmdale is the southern neighbor of Lancaster.
- It experience more than 300 days of sunshine every year.
- The city’s elevation is about 720m or 2,350 ft above sea level.
- The ethnic composition of Lancaster comprises of White-49.6%, African American-20.5%, Native American-1.0%, Asian-4.3%, Pacific Islander-0.2%, from other races-19.0% and two or more races-5.4%.
Lancaster History Fast Facts
- Paiute Indians was the first settlement to the area where Lancaster is now situated. The area is called as Antelope Valley.
- With the arrival of the Southern Pacific Railroad started the settlement of Lancaster.
- The Southern Pacific line was completed in 1876, linking Los Angeles and San Francisco via the Antelope Valley.
- Mosey Langley Wicks is the one who is credited for developing Lancaster by bringing property from the railroad in 1884. He laid down the streets.
- In 1885, the first weekly newspaper started in the Antelope Valley- the Lancaster News.
- The town was flourished by 1890.
- In 1894, drought ravaged the town.
- In 1898, borax and gold was found in the northern part of Lancaster, which drew plenty of prospectors to the area.
- In the 1930s, with the setting up of Muroc Air Force Base, the community started to experience immense growth.
- In the 1980s, Edwards Air Force Base hosted a few space shuttle landings in the area.
- In 1977, Lancaster was incorporated as a city and Arnold Rodio served as the first mayor of the city.
- The Hangar (formerly known as Lancaster Municipal Stadium) was built in 1996.
- The BLVD was opened in 2010.
- The city became the first city in the United States to set the rule to have solar panels on all new houses in March 2013. It came into effect in 2014 January.
Lancaster Government and Economy Fast Facts
- Lancaster has a Council-Manager type of government.
- It is the hub of renewable and solar energy.
- Major population of Lancaster was employed in the space and aviation industry as technicians and engineers until the late 1980s.
- The major industry in Lancaster in Aerospace. Also, Health and service industries, solar and renewable energy and retail sectors also have developed a strong hold in the city, thus offering plenty of employment opportunities to the residents.
- Some of the main employers in the Antelope Valley include Lockheed Martin, Edwards Air Force Base, Antelope Valley Hospital, China Lake Naval Weapons, Kaiser Permanente, Los Angeles County, Rite Aid Distribution, Northrop-Grumman, Wal-Mart Stores, AV Union High School District and Bank of America Funding.
Lancaster Important and Interesting Fast Facts
- The motto of Lancaster city is “It’s Positively Clear”.
- “League of California Cities Helen Putnam Awards of Excellence” started in 1982 and since its inception, Lancaster has got this award in about 20 categories.
- The oldest standing structure in the city is the “Western Hotel” that was built in 1886. It is now a museum.
- The city honors the brave test pilots who were part of the Edwards Air Force Base at the Lancaster Aerospace Walk of Honor, which was established by the Lancaster City Council in 1990.
- Lancaster has more than 600 acres of developed parkland, including picnic space, playground and sports facilities.
- The city is home to the first musical road in the U.S.- the Civic Musical Road. It plays a piece of the “William Tell Overture”, that is also the theme of the TV show of 1950s- The Lone Ranger.
- The California Poppy Reserve boasts one of the rich crops of California- the California Poppies, the state flower.
- Lancaster is home to a minor league baseball team- the Lancaster JetHawks.
- The daily newspaper of Lancaster is “Antelope Valley Press”.