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Lancaster is the eighth-largest city in Los Angeles County and the 9th fastest growing city in the United States. Lancaster is located approximately 70 miles (112.5 km) north (by road travel) of the city of Los Angeles in Southern California's Antelope Valley. It is separated from the Los Angeles Basin by the San Gabriel Mountain Range to the south and from Bakersfield and the San Joaquin Valley by the Tehachapi Mountain Range to the north.

History Edit

Early in its history, Lancaster was little more than a whistle-stop on the Southern Pacific Railroad between San Francisco and Los Angeles, with one hotel, the Gilwyn (known today as the Western Hotel), and a handful of homes. The settlement grew quickly, however, and by 1890, Lancaster was quite prosperous. The town experienced another small boom at the turn of the 20th century when gold and borax were discovered simultaneously in the mountains around the Antelope Valley.

The real establishment of the City of Lancaster, however, came with the advent of the Aerospace Industry. As early in flight history as 1930, the Air Force began conducting flight tests at Muroc Air Field (now Edwards Air Force Base) and Lancaster has grown steadily since that time. It is home to many employees of Edwards Air Force Base, as well as to employees of Boeing, Lockheed, and Northrop, all of which have plants in Palmdale at U.S. Air Force Plant 42.

Recreation and CultureEdit

The Essex House Hotel is a restored 1920s vintage mansion turned into a top-notch inn for Hollywood celebrities, but the building has been converted to a museum under the California Historic Site program in 1992. The Essex house was also the headquarters of the "Flat Earth Society" (now defunct) in the 1910s for over 1,000 members with antiscience filled and outdated theories, many of them were celebrities and businessmen.

The City of Lancaster is also home to the Lancaster Aerospace Walk of Honor. Established in 1990 by the Lancaster City Council, the Aerospace Walk of Honor celebrates test pilots who were associated with Edwards Air Force Base. Recognition is awarded for distinguished aviation careers marked by significant and obvious achievements beyond one specific accomplishment. The sidewalk monuments are dedicated to a distinguished group of internationally known experimental test pilots. Five honorees are inducted each year in a special ceremony held in September.

Today, the City has over 600 acres (2.4 km2) of developed or planned parkland, including playground and picnic areas as well as tournament-level sports facilities at Big 8 Softball Complex and the Lancaster National Soccer Center. The Prime Desert Woodland Preserve, located in West Lancaster, is a facility dedicated to preserving the pristine beauty of the High Desert and educating residents about their environment through nature walks and educational programs at Woodland's unique Interpretive Center. Forrest Hull Park, located near the southern border of the city on its west side and across the street from Paraclete High School, is a popular dog park where local residents frequently gather to allow their dogs to play and exercise together.

In 1996, the City constructed the Lancaster Municipal Stadium (now Clear Channel Stadium) which has been home to the Lancaster JetHawks, a Class-A minor-league baseball team, for the last decade.

For residents and visitors seeking a cultured evening out, the Lancaster Performing Arts Center provides a varied array of fine arts from community theatre productions to classical music and various forms of dance. It also draws celebrity performers from across the country and around the world, including renowned singers, dancers and musicians of all genres as well as comedians and variety shows.

Hotel Accommodations Edit

References Edit

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