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According to the 2000 Census, Fresno County is one of the biggest, most rapidly growing, and most variegated counties in the state of California. It is the sixth largest city in the sunny state of California and is located in the San Joaquin Valley which lies south of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta in Stockton.
Fresno boasts a Mediterranean climate, with sweltering hot Summers and generally very mild Winters. Rivaling Spanish and Italian temperatures, with highs of 96 degrees Fahrenheit (35 degrees Celsius) in the Summer, and rarely lower than 38 degrees Fahrenheit (3 degrees Celsius) in the Winter months.
Charmingly, the name “Fresno” comes from the Spanish language, in which “Fresno” means “Ash tree”. It’s name inspired by nature fits perfectly; Fresno lies but 100 km from both Yosemite National Park and Kings Canyon National Park, and is situated 120 km from Sequoia National Park. Within the county itself lies three large public parks; “Woodward Park” in north Fresco, “Roeding Park” near downtown Fresno and “Kearney Park”, which is the largest of Fresno’s public parks.
With an estimated population of 481,035, the racial makeup of the city is 50.17% White, 39.87% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race, 8.36% Black or African American, 1.58% Native American, 11.23% Asian, 0.14% Pacific Islander, 23.36% from other races, and 5.16% from two or more races.
Fresno has much to offer in the way of activities, reaching out to all age demographics. There are numerous golf clubs in Fresno, three large national parks within easy reach; Yosemite, Sequoia and Kings Canyon, zoos, skiing opportunities, museums and of course, eating in some of the best restaurants California has to offer.
One particularly striking attraction in Fresno are the “Forestiere Underground Gardens”, which are a complex of underground caverns, grottos, patios and garden courts encircling the underground home of Baldasare Forestiere, a Sicilian immigrant. The gardens, which Forestiere designed and hand sculpted himself, beginning in the early 1900’s, were created as a means to escape the heat of Fresno during the Summer.
This city, for it’s offerings of an excellent climate and many points of cultural and natural interest has attracted many well-known people to live in the city for a time, including; Cher, Kirk Kerkorian, Audra McDonald and Robert Beltran.