This is a page about Sacramento's culture in the sense of its "set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices.” For information about Sacramento's culture in the sense of "fine arts and humanities, also known as 'high culture'", see the Arts and Culture page. (Definitions courtesy of Wikipedia.)
Sacramento's diverse culture reflects its diverse demography - in 2002, Time Magazine named it the most diverse city in the country. There are strong ethnic subcultures of Sacramento, representing some of the larger ethnic groups in Sacramento, such as African Americans, Hispanics, Russians, and Hmong. There is also a distinct LGBT Community.
The primary newspaper is The Sacramento Bee, founded in 1857 by James McClatchy. Its rival, the Sacramento Union, started publishing six years earlier in 1851. Before it closed its doors in 1994, the Union was the oldest daily newspaper west of the Mississippi. Writer and journalist Mark Twain wrote for the Union in 1866. In late 2004, a new Sacramento Union returned with bimonthly magazines and in May 2005 began monthly publication, but does not intend to return as a daily newspaper. In 2006, The McClatchy Company purchased Knight Ridder Inc. to become the second-largest newspaper publisher in the United States.
The oldest part of the town besides Sutter's Fort is Old Sacramento, which consists of cobbled streets and some historic buildings, some from the 1860s. Buildings have been preserved, restored or reconstructed, and the district is now a substantial tourist attraction, with rides on steam-hauled historic trains and paddle steamers.
The "Big Four Building", built in 1852, was home to the offices of Collis Huntington, Mark Hopkins, Leland Stanford, and Charles Crocker. The Central Pacific Railroad and Southern Pacific Railroad were founded there. The original building was destroyed in 1963 for the construction of Interstate 5, but was re-created using original elements in 1965. It is now a National Historic Landmark.
Sports and recreation
Sacramento hosts one professional basketball team: the Sacramento Kings (NBA). The Kings teams play at Power Balance Pavilion. A minor league basketball team called the Sacramento Heatwave (ABA) plays at Cosumnes River College. In addition, Sacramento also has a minor league baseball team called the Sacramento River Cats (affiliate of the Oakland Athletics). The River Cats play at Raley Field located in West Sacramento. In the past, the city hosted two professional football teams, the Sacramento Surge of the WLAF and the Sacramento Gold Miners of the CFL. At one time, it was also home to an indoor soccer team, the Sacramento Knights of the CISL and later WISL. The Sacramento Solons, a Pacific Coast League professional baseball team, played in Sacramento from 1903 - 1961 (originally the Sacramento Senators, they changed their name in 1935).
Sacramento has frequently hosted the NCAA Track and Field Championships.
Sacramento residents play softball more than any city except Detroit, Michigan.
The Sacramento Mile is a national flat-track motorcycle racing event.
The California State Fair is held in Sacramento each year at the end of the summer, ending on Labor Day. Over one million people attended this fair in 2001.
The California International Marathon takes place every December. CIM is a 26-mile, 385-yard, point-to-point, USATF certified road race. The fast, net-downhill course follows an historic gold-miners' route: it begins at the Folsom Dam, passes through semi-rural Sacramento suburbs into bustling midtown Sacramento, and has a thrilling finish in front of the spectacular California State Capitol. The field of 5,000+ runners receive outstanding support from 2,000+ experienced volunteers. They also enjoy mile-by-mile course entertainment, the cheers of thousands of spectators, and the beautiful fall colors of Sacramento's famous old growth trees. The fast course attracts not only runners seeking a personal best time, a Boston Marathon qualifying time, an Olympic Marathon Trials qualifying time, but also those hoping to achieve their first marathon finish. In addition, top athletes from all over the world compete for a share of the $50,000 prize money purse and for record times. Runner's World Magazine ranks the CIM in the top five marathons in the U.S. as a Boston Marathon Qualifier and lists it as one of the world's best small marathons! website
Notable people with ties to Sacramento include painter Wayne Thiebaud, photographer Michael Williamson, astronaut Stephen Robinson, U.S. Supreme Court justice Anthony Kennedy, and writer Joan Didion. In addition to Huntington, Hopkins, Stanford, and Crocker, the city's more successful entrepreneurs have included Russ Solomon (Tower Records) and Sherwood "Shakey" Johnson (Shakey's Pizza). The band Cake also began out of Sacramento. There are many other notable residents that should be listed here.