11 Quirky Facts About Northern California That Sound Made Up, But Are 100% Accurate
In the state known for surf and mountains, major cities, and bucolic countryside…the tech hub of the world and the breadbasket of the country– California is anything but one-note or boring. That includes the people, history, and lifestyle in this diverse state. So why should our quirky and fun facts be any different?
We’ve covered Northern California’s history and all
sorts of trivia, but we bet this list of quirky facts about the top half of this state will surprise and delight you. Check it out:
1. There are more dogs than children in San Francisco.
If you’ve driven through San Francisco, you may have noticed all the doggie daycares, dog clothing stores, and all the people walking dogs. There’s even a major dog festival– The NorCal Corgi Con, a fun beach day for corgi owners. Not surprisingly, the rumor that there are more dogs than children in San Francisco is true. The city is truly a dog-lover's paradise.
2. Northern California is home to two bigfoot museums.
Bigfoot lore has long fascinated the public and Northern California is no exception. In fact, there's enough interest that two museums in Northern California are dedicated to the elusive creature. One is located in Felton, just north of Santa Cruz, and the another is in
, east of Eureka. These bigfoot museums are so much fun to visit. And, maybe, just maybe, after a visit you'll be a believer!
The Bigfoot Museum, 38949 CA-299, Willow Creek, CA 95573, USA
3. The Northern California university town of Chico is home to the world’s largest working yo-yo.
In Chico there is a well-known gift shop called Bird In Hand. Inside this gift shop is the U.S. National Yo-Yo Museum and the world’s largest working yo-yo. The giant yo-yo measures 50 inches tall and weighs 256 pounds!
Bird In Hand, 320 Broadway St, Chico, CA 95928, USA
4. A frog jumping competition takes place every year in Calaveras County.
Famous American writer and humorist Mark Twain penned his well-loved short story, “The Famous Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” in 1865. It was his first big hit and the story earned him national attention. Twain lived in Angels Camp in Calaveras County when he wrote that story. And in 1928 the first frog jumping competition was held. It’s been a popular yearly event ever since. People from all over the state bring real live frogs to compete in this fun competition. The current record is held by “Rosie the Ribeter” who jumped more than 21 feet in 1986.
2465 Gunclub Rd, Angels Camp, CA 95222, USA
5. The world’s largest Monopoly board is in San Jose.
Play a life-sized game of Monopoly in San Jose. Groups can rent out the massive board and even have a referee. Monopoly In the Park was built in San Jose’s Discovery Meadow in 1992. It covers 930 square feet and is the largest Monopoly board in the world.
Monopoly in the Park, 330 W San Carlos St, San Jose, CA 95110, USA
6. The world’s largest box of raisins is in Kingsburg.
Just off of Interstate 5 near Fresno is The Sun-Maid Market and the world’s largest box of raisins. This quirky raisin box statue was built in 1992 and originally filled with 16,500 pounds of Sun-Maid raisins to establish a world record in The Guinness Book of World Records. Today, tourists line-up to take a photo with the giant raisin box.
World's Largest Box of Raisins, 13501-13999 S Bethel Ave, Kingsburg, CA 93631, USA
7. A dog served as honorary mayor of the town of Sunol.
The small town of Sunol, outside of Fremont, elected a dog as honorary mayor in 1981. Bosco Ramos beat out two humans in the race and ended up serving as honorary mayor until his death in 1994. A statue of Bosco was erected in front of Sunol’s post office.
8. The fog in San Francisco is named Karl and it even has a social media account.
Karl the Fog is the name of the perennial fog that envelops the city. All San Francisco residents know about Karl and occasionally read updates on Karl’s Twitter account. Over the years Karl's notoriety has grown. Today, Karl has an official website as well as products, like coffee and merchandise.
9. The California State Capitol has a memorial to a feral cat that lived on the grounds for 13 years.
“Senator Capitol Kitty” was a beloved feral cat that lived on state capitol grounds for more than a decade. Former California First Lady Sharon Davis wrote about the cat in her children’s book, “The Adventures of Capitol Kitty: An Almost True Story”. The memorial plaque, complete with paw prints, can be seen near the state capitol.
California State Capitol Museum, 1315 10th St, Sacramento, CA 95814, USA
10. The Golden Gate Bridge was not supposed to be red.
When parts for the bridge were delivered, they were covered in the orange-red primer to prevent corrosion. One of the bridge architects liked the paint color since it could be easily seen in the famous San Francisco fog, so the color choice remained. We can't imagine this iconic bridge being any other color!
Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CA, USA
11. Lake Tahoe has its own version of Loch Ness– Tahoe Tessie
Tahoe Tessie is said to live in an underground tunnel in Lake Tahoe. There are many images and videos online of people claiming they saw Tessie. Researchers have said Tessie sightings are most likely to be misidentified fish, but sightings of the beast continue to this day. Many businesses in the area have capitalized on Tessie by using her image as their logo.
Lake Tahoe, United States
It’s always interesting to learn something new about your own state. In addition to these quirky facts, Northern California also has some
What is your favorite quirky Northern California story/fact? Tell us in the comments.
OnlyInYourState may earn compensation through affiliate links in this article.