By Jannes Giessel - Joomag

By Jannes Giessel - Joomag

CALI DREAMIN’ San Luis Obispo By Jannes Giessel Text: Wikipedia! Photo: Brady Teufel! EXPLORE THE CENTRAL COAST he t d e am n s a w o p a s i c i...

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CALI DREAMIN’ San Luis Obispo

By Jannes Giessel Text: Wikipedia! Photo: Brady Teufel!



he t d e am n s a w o p a s i c i b r O e Am uis L n i n y a t S ci t s e i pp a h . r d e n n t a t or ue h B t u n a a . by rD e h unities c m r m a o se e ldest c r o s ’ a i uis or iforn San L of Cal is one

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uis O San L

Polya i n r fo o Cali t SLO t n e c n St. is adja r o d f n pulatio h a o s i p y t n e n a h Cou po (Sp rsity. T s i e b v l i a O n C U is State city in an Lu c a i n s nsus. i h e ) c c p e t o 0 h 1 s y the 20 the Bi a t , a s w i d 9 u i 1 o L ,1 ym as 45 oughl r w d e t , loca ncisco a r ifornia F n Sa s and e l y e g 772 b s An 1 o n L i n d e e betwe Found . t s sa is Obi al Co r u t L n e n a C rra, S e on the S o r pe . Juní r F h s Spani

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, is the

History Demographics Culture





San Luis Obispo


he earliest human inhabitants

San Luis Obispo was also a popular

of the local area were the

stop on both U.S. Route 101 and

Chumash peoples. One of the

California State Route 1 with the

earliest villages lies south of San Luis

rise of car culture. Due to its popu-

Obispo, and reflects the landscape of

larity as a stop, it was the location of

the early Holocene when estuaries came

the first motel, the Milestone Mo-Tel.

farther inland. These Chumash people

Among San Luis Obispo’s histori-

exploited marine resources of the inlets

cal buildings is the former San Luis

and bays along the Central Coast and

Obispo Carnegie Library, located at

inhabited a network of villages including

696 Monterey Street.

sites at Los Osos and Morro Creek.



The San Luis Obispo Carnegie Library was built in 1905 with a grant of $10,000 from Andrew Carnegie, who funded the establishment of 142 California libraries in the early 1900s.

The Romanesque style building was designed by architect W. H. Weeks of Watsonville, California and was built by contractor Joseph Maino of San Luis Obispo.


9 5



DEMOGR of San Luis Obisp T

he 2010 United States Census reported that San Luis Obispo had a population

of 45,119. The population density was 3,489.4 people per square mile

Pacific Islander, 1,973 (4.4%) from oth-

(1,347.3/km²). The racial makeup of

er races, and 1,816 (4.0%) from two or

San Luis Obispo was 38,117 (84.5%)

more races. Hispanic or Latino of any

White, 523 (1.2%) African American,

race were 6,626 persons (0.1%) Pa-

275 (0.6%) Native American, 2,350

cific Islander, 1,973 (4.4%) from other

(5.2%) Asian, 65 (0.1%) (14.7%).

races, and 1,816 (4.0%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6,626 persons (14.7%).





The Census reported that 43,937 people (97.4% of the population) lived in households, 967 (2.1%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 215 (0.5%) were institutionalized. There were 19,193 households, out of which 3,178 (16.6%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 5,690 (29.6%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 1,336 (7.0%) had a female householder with no husband present, 586 (3.1%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 1,104 (5.8%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 124 (0.6%) same-sex married couples or partnerships.


There were 20,553 housing units at an average density of 1,589.5 per square mile (613.7/km²), of which 7,547 (39.3%) were owner-occupied, and 11,646 (60.7%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.6%; the rental vacancy rate was 5.7%. 17,225 people (38.2% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 26,712 people (59.2%) lived in rental housing units.





The Madonna Inn is a fa-

is home to the San Luis

a Carnegie Library which is

mous local landmark. Es-

Obispo International Film

now home to the San Luis

tablished by Alex Madonna

Festival. Another destination Obispo County Historical

in 1958, the inn is famously

is Bubblegum Alley. Since

Museum. A sculpture of a

eccentric. The Fremont

about 1960, people have

child and bear at the Mis-

Theater, a historic Art Deco

been sticking chewed gum

sion in downtown San Luis

theater from the 1940s, still

on the walls of this alley.

Obispo. A fish was added

plays first run movies on the

The doctor’s office on the

after the photograph was

huge screen. Murals adorn

corner of Santa Rosa and


the walls of the main theater

Pacific streets is one of very

while neon swirls light the

few commercial buildings

Lots of mystery surrounds

ceiling. The Palm Theatre

designed by Frank Lloyd

the “underground city”, or

boasts solar heating and

Wright. San Luis also has

the series of tunnels that




of San Luis Obispo



exists beneath the city.

CSU system”, Poly Royal

One of the largest Mardi

began drawing over 100,000

Gras parades West of the

people from throughout the

Mississippi used to be held

state, including 126,000

in San Luis Obispo, but it

people in 1985. Concerts,

has been canceled recently

parties, and other enter-

because of difficulties re-

tainment were added and it

lated to crowd control and

earned $3–4 million in reve-

alcohol consumption.

nue for the city every year.

Cal Poly’s open house, Poly

Following a “mini-riot” in

Royal, was held annually

1989 at an off-campus

from 1933 to 1990. It was

apartment during Poly Roy-

canceled in 1945 due to

al, the events in 1990 would

war rationing. It began as a

cancel the event “indefinite-

show-and-tell for students

ly.” Two nights of rioting on

to display their projects.

April 28–29 led to 127 ar-

It traces its origins to the

rests, over 100 injuries and

1904 Farmer’s Institute

14 police injuries on top of

and Picnic Basket. By the

“several hundred thousand

1980s, as the college be-

dollars” worth of damage.

came “the most popular...

A liquor store near campus,

university in the 19-campus

Campus Bottle, was de-

stroyed by revelers demanding alcohol. The second nioff-campus were broken up and revelers flooded the streets. Mayor Dunin called the events “the worst experience in the history of San Luis Obispo.” After a meeting between Mayor Dunin and University President Warren Baker the following Monday, Poly Royal was canceled from that point forward. The name Poly Royal returned in 2001 as “Open House Presents Poly Royal”, a scaled down version that was designed for students and parents. San Luis Obispo has been

>>>>>> 14

home of several other events, including a

San Luis Obispo hosts a Farmer’s Market

stop on the way of the Olympic Flame Re-

every Thursday night from 6-9PM on

lay, the Tour of California bicycle race, Cin-

Higuera Street, between Osos and Nipomo

co de Mayo celebrations, an annual Mozart

Streets. During this weekly event, the street

festival, held every July, and a long-stand-

is closed to vehicle traffic while vendors

ing Christmas Parade. Another attraction

sell food and goods and various visual and

is the development of Edna Valley into a

music artists perform for the crowds.

well-known wine region. Just south of the city, people can spend an afternoon wine

Since June 2000, the first Thursday of

tasting several wineries in the area with a

every month is The Bike Happening (also

very short drive. The wine region extends

known as Bike Nite) in San Luis Obispo.

north beyond Paso Robles (30 miles north)

People gather after the Farmer’s Market at

and south to Santa Ynez (70 miles south).

the Mission Plaza with their bikes. The bikers then go around on multiple circuits on

During Summer months, local residents

the main streets of downtown adhering to

and visitors congregate in the Mission Pla-

the traffic laws (for the most part). The ride

za for a free outdoor concert every Friday

is considered a fun/social ride meant to en-

evening. The event is called Concerts in

courage people to get back on their bikes

the Plaza. Other noteworthy events include

and to have fun. Each Bike Happening has

the San Luis Obispo International Film

a theme and a large portion of the crowd is

Festival, Festival Mosaic, and the Plein Air

in some costume adherent to the theme.





One of the cultural focal centers of San Luis Obispo is the Christopher Cohen Performing Arts Center built on the Cal Poly Campus, which was constructed utilizing the donations of local businesses and individuals. The Performing Arts Center consists of multiple venues, including the original Spanos Theatre. The largest venue, Harmon Hall, seats 1,300. Many high school and college programs are scheduled. Local artists


perform plays, music and dance. The addition of the Performing Arts Center attracts many touring performances which are usually not found in communities of comparable size to San Luis Obispo. The Summer of 2007 was the opening concert of the Forbes Pipe Organ, which was built elevated into a side wall of Harmon Hall and required the donation of a further $3 million for purchase and installation.

*********** 18

San Luis Obisp

Find out about Academics, Stude Graduates & Careers


500! acre s!

1,321! acres!

1,614! acres! 3,043! acres!

3,200! acres!

Western Ranches! Valencia Property! Swanton Pacific Ranch! Main Campus! San Luis Creek Ranches!


Total: 9,678 acres.!

po - Quick Facts

ent Body, Campus Size, History, s, Buildings and More




g un holdin

ne of o d n ,a rkeley e seco e h t B s i C al y U al Pol ion. C nly to t o a n d n e o h es in t ia, sec i t n i r s o r f i e l univ ducain Ca e g n e i h d t l f o port o land-h p t u s s e g e r v the la in acti s g n i ld nd ho a l s t i of es all s u y l Po s. udent t s s t i f tion o


gest nd lar

Student  body   18,762! Faculty  


Student-to-Faculty ! Ratio! !

1,244! Staff   1,383! Corpora3on   445! ASI   84!