Information and History behind Chico California
Art is actively encouraged here and there are many galleries, wall murals and public space sculptures. There are theatres tooand Shakespeare in the Park performances. The Senator Theatre is a 1,500 seat venue for music and it’s a very attractive building, originating from 1927 when it began as a vaudeville theatre. Chico California has several museums, including the Chico Museum, which has permanent and traveling exhibits about the local history of the county. There are displays of photographs and artifacts, including items from the Chinese Tao Temple, a result of the city’s large Chinese population at the beginning of the 20th century. Science too is represented here with the Chico Community Observatory, a planetarium that puts on shows with real time images from their telescopes.
The annual Chico World Music Festival has gained an international reputation and put Chico California on the map for performers from all over the world.
The City of Chico was founded in 1860 by General John Bidwell, and incorporated in 1872. With recent annexations, the City of Chico has grown to over a 33.14 square mile Charter city of 86, 949 with an urbanized, unincorporated area immediately adjacent to it making the total population of the Chico urban area 105,975 (as of 1/1/2008). Chico is located in the Northern Sacramento Valley of California approximately ninety miles north of Sacramento, on 99W, east of Interstate 5.
Chico is known as a well-managed city that values quality infrastructure and services, and maintains a special sense of community and small-town living as it has developed into a vibrant regional center for business, recreation and cultural activities. There are also many recreational opportunities in and around Chico.
BIDWELL PARKone of the largest municipally owned parks in the nation (3,670 acres), is the focal point of the City’s park system and offers numerous trails for biking, hiking and equestrian use.
The BIDWELL MANSIONwas the home of General John Bidwell and his wife Annie Ellicott Kennedy Bidwell from the time of their marriage in 1868 until the end of their lives in 1900 and 1918 respectively. Construction of the 26-room mansion began in 1865, prior to John Bidwell’s first introduction to his future bride, which occurred in the early part of 1865. The Bidwells were married April 16, 1868 in Washington, D.C. with then President Andrew Johnson and future President Ulysses S. Grant among the guests. During their courtship and prior to their marriage the Bidwells together planned the furnishings of the Mansion as well as the finishing stages of construction. Henry W. Cleaveland was the architect of the $56,000 house. The most modern gas lighting, plumbing and water systems were installed, and every detail of hardware and handwork was meticulously finished. The overall style of the three-story brick structure was that of an Italian villa or country estate, an informal, warmly romantic style that was further heightened by covering the brick walls with pink-tinted plaster and painting the wood trim a complimentary brown tone.
California State University
Chico State offers over 100 undergraduate majors, concentrations, and degree options. It is ranked in the top 4 public regional universities in the west. THE UNIVERSITY is divided into two broad categories: the humanities (liberal arts and sciences) and professional studies. Liberal arts colleges include Behavioral & Social Sciences, Humanities & Fine Arts, and Natural Sciences. Professional studies colleges include Agriculture, Business, Communication & Education, and Engineering, Computer Science, & Technology. CHICO STATE UNIVERSITY is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. It is classed as a Master’s College and University I by the Carnegie Institute. The university has academic programs at both the undergraduate and graduate level. There are 9 colleges: the College of Agriculture, the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, the College of Business, the College of Communication and Education, the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology, the College of Humanities and Fine Arts, the School of Graduate, International, and Sponsored Programs, and the College of Regional and Continuing Education. Bachelor’s degrees are offered in a variety of fields within the various academic colleges. Degrees at the bachelor’s level can be received in the liberal arts and in professional and technical areas such as agriculture, art, business administration, chemistry, economics, French, kinesiology, multicultural & gender studies, music, nursing, recreation administration, education, and social work. Minors and certificate programs are also available. Graduate programs are offered at the master’s level in the humanities and technical programs. Degrees are available in art, communication studies, education, business administration, electrical engineering, history, nursing, and social work, among others. Some programs have more than one concentration or area of study. There are no doctoral levels or professional programs such as law or medicine at Chico State.