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Coachella Valley
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Coachella Valley
Width 15 miles (24 km)
Naming
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Geography
Location California, United States
Population centers Indio, Palm Springs, Palm Desert
Borders on Salton Sea (southeast), Santa Rosa Mountains (southwest), San Jacinto Mountains (west), Little San Bernardino Mountains (east), San Gorgonio Mountain (north)
Traversed by Interstate 10

The Coachella Valley ( koh-CHEL-ə-,_-koh-Ə--) is an arid rift valley in the Colorado Desert of Southern California's Riverside County. The valley may also be referred to as Greater Palm Springs due to the prominence of the city of Palm Springs. The valley extends approximately 45 mi (72 km) southeast from the San Gorgonio Pass to the northern shore of the Salton Sea and the neighboring Imperial Valley, and is approximately 15 mi (24 km) wide along most of its length. It is bounded on the northeast by the San Bernardino and Little San Bernardino Mountains, and on the southwest by the San Jacinto and Santa Rosa Mountains.

The valley is noted for being the location of several wintertime resort cities, especially Palm Springs, that are popular destinations for snowbirds—people who live in cold climates and seek out warmer weather during the winter. The valley is also known for a number of annual events, including the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, the Stagecoach Country Music Festival, and the Riverside County Fair and National Date Festival, all held in Indio. Other events include the Palm Springs Modernism Week, Palm Springs International Film Festival, the ANA Inspiration and Desert Classic golf tournaments, and the Indian Wells Masters tennis tournament.

In addition to Palm Springs and the area's largest city Indio, the valley is home to the resort cities of Cathedral City, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Palm Desert, and Rancho Mirage. Because it is a major winter destination, the valley's population fluctuates from almost 500,000 in April to around 200,000 in July and around 800,000 by January. It is estimated that 3.5 million conventioneers and tourists visit the valley each year.

The Coachella Valley connects with the Greater Los Angeles area to the west via the San Gorgonio Pass, a major transportation corridor, traversed by Interstate 10 and the Union Pacific Railroad. The Coachella Valley is sometimes called the Desert Empire to differentiate it from the broader Inland Empire.

Economy

Agriculture

As of 2010 the valley produced agricultural products worth about $600 million.

The valley is the primary date-growing region in the United States, responsible for nearly 95 percent of the nation's crop and is celebrated each year in Indio during the Riverside County Fair and National Date Festival. The earliest attempt at growing dates came about in 1890 when the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) imported date palm shoots from Iraq and Egypt. Sixty-eight shoots were distributed across the Southwest U.S. in Las Cruces, New Mexico, Yuma, Arizona, Phoenix, Arizona, and several California cites: Indio, Pomona near Los Angeles, Tulare and National City near San Diego. The imports were almost all male seedlings and produced poor fruit. The Coachella Valley showed promise, so USDA horticulturist Bernard Johnson planted a number of shoots that he brought back from Algeria in September 1903. On his own initiative, Johnson imported more shoots from Algeria in 1908 and again in 1912. The area's entire date industry can be traced back to those original USDA experiments near present-day Mecca. Date palms were grown from present-day Cathedral City to the Salton Sea, but most date groves were overtaken by development by the 1990s. Today, nearly all of the date groves are in the "East Valley" area south of Indio, near Coachella and east of La Quinta.

Other agricultural products cultivated in the Coachella Valley include fruits and vegetables, especially table grapes, citrus fruits such as lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruit; onions and leeks; and peppers. The valley floor served to grow bounties of alfalfa, artichokes, avocados, beans, beets, cabbage, carrots, corn, cotton, cucumbers, dandelions (salad greens), eggplant, figs, grains (i.e. barley, oats, rye and wheat; plus rice fields kept wet or moist in the Salton Sea area), hops, kohlrabi, lettuce, mangoes, nectarines and peaches, persimmons, plums and prunes, pomegranate, potatoes, radishes, spinach, strawberries, sugar cane, tomatoes, a variety of herbs and spices, and other vegetable crops. The Coachella grapefruit originated in the region. The city of Coachella is the primary shipping point for agricultural goods. Domesticated grasses, flowers and trees are widely grown for warm-weather or desert climates, and sold for use in golf courses and landscape.

Only 10 percent of the Coachella Valley residents were born/raised in the area, according to the 2000 census, a much lower percentage than found in most parts of the U.S. Agriculture is a founding block of the majority of the "oldtimer" residents, whose parents and grandparents came to the area as farmers and laborers transformed the eastern parts of the valley from a hot sandy desert into a green fertile place with a year-round growing season. The Coachella Valley's agricultural development is due to irrigation: water was drawn from an underground aquifer created when the valley was under a fresh water lake in the last ice age (over 10,000 years ago); and from the All-American Canal, completed in the late 1940s, which brought large supplies of water from the Colorado River. Recent growth of fish farming or "aquaculture" in Mecca near the Salton Sea brings new promise to the local economy, especially to efforts to restore the ailing ecology of the large saltwater lake.

Wind power

The San Gorgonio Pass Wind Farm as viewed from the top of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway in the San Jacinto Mountains to the south

The valley's northwest entrance from the San Bernardino-Riverside along Interstate 10 is known as the San Gorgonio Pass and is the second windiest place in the country. Cool coastal air is forced through the pass and mixes with the hot desert air, making the San Gorgonio Pass one of only three ideal places in California for steady, wind-generated electricity. At the San Gorgonio Pass Wind Farm, thousands of huge wind turbines spread across the desert and hills on either side of the highway greet visitors as they approach the crest of the pass and have become somewhat of a symbol of the area. The state's other wind farms are in the Tehachapi Pass between Mojave and Bakersfield and in the Altamont Pass near Livermore.

Businesses

  • Siemens Water Technologies, Palm Desert – manufacturer of industrial water filtration systems.
  • Guthy-Renker, Palm Desert – producer of mail order infomercials.
  • Ernie Ball, manufacturer of electric guitar strings, opened a manufacturing facility in Coachella in 2005.
  • Shields Date Gardens, date producer – a local landmark and tourist attraction since 1924.
  • Coca-Cola bottling plant facility in Coachella – opened in 2009 and employs 1,000 people.
  • Eisenhower Medical Center, opened in 1971, is a 540-bed hospital with beautiful in-patient facilities, emergency department, and out-patient clinics and urgent care centers. Eisenhower employs approximately 2800 people.

Demographics

As retirement haven throughout the area's history, a large percentage of residents are age 65 or older. The valley has some of the densest concentrations of senior citizens in California with three of California’s cities with the highest percentages of residents age 65 and older: Indian Wells, Rancho Mirage, and Palm Desert. Though the area is somewhat politically conservative, it is nevertheless renowned for being a community that is known for its inclusion of gays and lesbians as part of a diverse community. Current estimates are that up to 33% of Palm Springs' residents identify as gay and lesbian. Cathedral City is also home to a number of gay resorts, bars, restaurants and clubs. Many establishments along a stretch of Arenas Road in downtown Palm Springs are gay-oriented and serve as the center of the annual White Party. According to an interview with former Palm Springs mayor Ron Oden, perhaps at the time the United States' only openly gay African-American mayor, a large number of people living with HIV (PWH) have moved to the Palm Springs area to take advantage of the extensive health-support systems that have been developed in recent years (such as DAP Health). For this reason, the area has one of the highest per capita rates of HIV in the nation.

The area has a large percentage of Mexican American political figures, plus the state assembly representative Bonnie Garcia of La Quinta is of Puerto Rican parentage.

The Coachella Valley was settled by a diverse array of races and ethnicities. Once viewed as predominantly Caucasian, the Coachella Valley has features of a diverse history. As of 2004, the Claritas study found that 373,100 people resided in the region. The racial makeup was 44.7% Non-Hispanic White, 49.9% Hispanic, 1.8% Black/African American, 2.1% Asian/Pacific Islander, 0.4% American Indian and Inuit, 0.1% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races.

Early history

In the early 20th century, less than 1,000 full-time residents lived in the "village" of Palm Springs, surrounding farms and ranches, and on the Indian reservation. The 1930 U.S. census found less than half the Coachella Valley's population was "white", the rest were Mexicans especially in the eastern ends when traqueros arrived to maintain the area's railroads, and Native Americans of local tribes in what were then impoverished reservations.

Starting in the 1890s, there was a large Irish and Scottish presence in the region, after Palm Springs was an established agricultural colony called "Palm Valley" cofounded by Welwood Murray, a Scottish immigrant and John Guthrie McCallum, an American from the U.S. East coast. The two men widely advertised the colony to settlers with an interest in a warm climate and the ideal winter residence.

Hispanic community

Hispanic Americans are long established in Palm Springs' central and eastern sections, and have constituted the majority of the populations of Indio and Coachella for many decades. In the 2000 U.S. census, about 35 percent of Coachella Valley residents were Latino. But according to the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, an estimated half (50–60 percent) of the residents are Latino. A large portion of Latinos moving into the area are from the Los Angeles-Orange County and San Diego metro areas.

Most of the valley's Hispanics are Mexican from a multi-generational community (see Chicano), but Central American immigrants (especially in Indio and Cathedral City), Cuban Americans, Puerto Ricans, and South Americans are also numerous (esp. in Rancho Mirage and Palm Desert). Since the late 1980s, the large wave of immigration from neighboring Mexico has culturally impacted the Coachella Valley in many more ways than the rest of California or the country, but the national trend slowed down due to the late 2000s recession.

Most Hispanic immigrants came to obtain work in the area's year-round agriculture, but today many find employment in construction and home remodeling, the resort hospitality industry, landscaping firms, and in the retail sector.

Other racial/ethnic groups

The prominence of Native Americans of the Cahuilla tribe is represented in local life; because of casino gambling and land ownership, the majority of local tribal members (Cahuilla pertaining to the Agua Caliente band and the Cabazon/Twentynine Palms bands) are in upper-income brackets. According to the Southern California National Congress of American Indians, less than 5 percent of the area's residents are Native Americans.

African Americans are concentrated in Palm Springs' northern and eastern ends, as well as in small sections of Indio and Desert Hot Springs, but local African Americans live everywhere in middle-class and wealthy areas and comprise less than 5 percent of the local population. The area is home to 10,000 Indian Americans (mostly from Sri Lanka), descendants of agricultural workers in the 1930s and 1940s . Additionally, Palm Desert is the home of 1,000 Tahitians, a Pacific Islander people from French Polynesia.

Other ethnic groups in the area like Asian Americans (i.e. Chinese, Japanese and Filipinos), followed by a small wave of Armenians and Arabs (esp. Lebanese and Syrians) from the Middle East were involved in the area's agriculture in the early 1900s. In recent years, the area (especially Palm Desert and Palm Springs) became popular for Iranian, Israeli, East Indian, Yugoslav (Former) and Korean home buyers, with most purchasing increasingly high-valued properties for investment purposes.

Local emphasis of tolerance

In mid-2000, Palm Springs city officials and business leaders discussed making an unofficial declaration of Palm Springs as a "hate-free zone" as a sign of local pride to celebrate the city's tolerance (Palm Springs, especially in The Advocate magazine that caters to gay and lesbian readership, has voted it as one of the top five most popular world places for the gay/lesbian community) and multicultural diversity of the city's relaxed attitude regarding many races living close together. According to the Palm Springs Pride LGBT association poll and census data in 2010, an estimated 40–45 percent of Palm Springs' residents are thought to be LGBT and nearby Cathedral City is about one-quarter, each having above averages of LGBT people for a U.S. city.

Religious life

Many faiths and denominations are represented in the area. Protestants and Catholics are the most numerous. According to the Jewish Federation of the Desert based in Palm Springs, the Coachella Valley has one of California's largest Jewish communities, estimated at 35,000, a result of being a major retirement destination and connections to the Hollywood film industry. There has also been a sizable Mormon community since the early 1900s, with three stakes, formerly branches, which experienced rapid growth. Mormons form a large population in the Inland Empire and High Desert regions. The Islamic Society of the Coachella Valley has a mosque in the city of Coachella.

Communities and population

The Coachella Valley contains nine cities and various unincorporated communities.

City Population
(2020 census)
Cathedral City 51,493
Coachella 41,941
Desert Hot Springs 32,512
Indian Wells 4,757
Indio 89,137
La Quinta 37,558
Palm Desert 51,163
Palm Springs 44,575
Rancho Mirage 16,999
Cities Total 370,135

The incorporated cities of the Coachella Valley had a population of approximately 370,000 at the 2020 Census. State projections estimate that the valley's population will pass 1 million by 2066. Demographers believe the total population already surpassed the 500,000 mark, plus 100,000 temporary seasonal residents known as "snowbirds" arriving to stay during the winter months (from the end of October to the end of April).

The city of Palm Springs sits at the northwest end of the valley. Unincorporated areas and towns include Cabazon in the San Gorgonio Pass, and Bermuda Dunes and Thousand Palms in the east end of the valley with Indio Hills, Sky Valley, North Palm Springs and Garnet along the northern rim along with Thermal, Vista Santa Rosa, Oasis and Mecca to the southeast. The native Cahuilla tribe represented in the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, Twentynine Palms Band of Mission Indians, Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians and the Torres-Martinez Band of Cahuilla Indians, the Mission Creek Band in unincorporated Painted Hills, and the Santa Rosa Indian Reservation south of Palm Desert, each have reservations in the area.

Education

The Coachella Valley is served by three public school districts: the Coachella Valley Unified School District of Coachella; Desert Sands Unified School District serving La Quinta, Indio and Palm Desert; and Palm Springs Unified School District of Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, and Desert Hot Springs.

There are 12 public high schools:

  • Cathedral City High School, Cathedral City.
  • Coachella Valley High School, Coachella.
  • Desert Hot Springs High School, Desert Hot Springs.
  • Desert Mirage High School, Thermal.
  • Indio High School, Indio – renovated.
  • La Quinta High School (La Quinta, California).
  • Palm Desert High School, Palm Desert.
  • Palm Springs High School, Palm Springs.
  • Rancho Mirage High School, Rancho Mirage.
  • Seaview High School, Mecca.
  • Shadow Hills High School, Indio.
  • West Shores High School, Salton City.

For athletics, the schools compete in the Desert Valley League, Desert Empire League or the De Anza league, all part of the Southern Section of the California Interscholastic Federation.

Private education is provided by church-run and secular schools such as:

  • Catholic School (Our Lady of Perpeutal Help), Indio.
  • Christian Desert Calvary Bible School, Cathedral City.
  • Christian Scientist School, Palm Desert.
  • Community of Christ School, Palm Springs.
  • Desert Adventist Academy, Palm Desert.
  • Desert Chapel and high school, Palm Springs.
  • Desert Christian Academy (formerly Christian School of the Desert), Bermuda Dunes.
  • Desert Torah Academy (was Jewish Community School), Palm Desert.
  • Escuela Cesar Chavez (High School), Indio.
  • Grace Christian Academy, Indio (and Yucca Valley).
  • Hope Academy, Palm Desert (and Yucca Valley)
  • Indio (County) Community School, Indio
  • King's Schools (Distinctively Christian Education), Palm Springs.
  • Learning Tree School, Palm Desert.
  • Marywood Academy, Rancho Mirage.
  • Mayfield School, Rancho Mirage.
  • Mission Springs School, Desert Hot Springs.
  • Morongo (Desert View) Military Academy, Desert Hot Springs.
  • Nova Academy, Coachella.
  • Oasis Seventh-Day Adventist Academy, Palm Desert.
  • Orange Crest Academy, Palm Springs (Riverside based).
  • Palm Desert Presbyterian Church School, Palm Desert.
  • Palm Springs Community School (Harry Oliver-Thousand Palms and Frances Stevens campuses-Palm Springs).
  • Palm Springs County School, North Palm Springs.
  • Palm Valley School, Rancho Mirage.
  • Presbyterian Church School of the Desert, Palm Springs.
  • River Springs Charter School, Indio
  • Sacred Heart Catholic School, Palm Desert.
  • Saint Teresa's Catholic School, Palm Springs.
  • San Cayetano Community School, Palm Desert.
  • Southwest Community Church School, Indian Wells.
  • The Ranch Christian Academy, Thousand Palms.
  • Xavier College Preparatory High School, Palm Desert.

Higher education is served by the College of the Desert (COD), a community college with its main campus in Palm Desert. COD constructed several satellite campuses including an annex on Oasis Street in Indio, an East Valley campus in Thermal and a West Valley annex in Palm Springs. COD has experienced sudden growth in the campus from the 1970s to the late 2000s.

The University of California Riverside (Coachella Valley) and California State University San Bernardino (Palm Desert) campus annexes are located in the Indian Wells (Higher) Education Center in Palm Desert.

There is the Santa Barbara Business College and the San Bernardino Skidron Business School/College in Palm Desert. Another college is Brandman University, operated by Chapman University in Palm Desert.

Infrastructure

The Coachella Valley is served by the following utilities:

Electricity

  • Southern California Edison (serves Palm Desert, Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, Desert Hot Springs, and Cathedral City)
  • Imperial Irrigation District (serves La Quinta, Indio, Thousand Palms, Indian Wells, and Coachella)

Natural gas

  • Southern California Gas Company

Cable Television

Transportation

Aviation in the area is served by the Palm Springs International Airport in Palm Springs, Jacqueline Cochran Regional Airport in Thermal and Bermuda Dunes Municipal Airport in Bermuda Dunes. Interstate 10 runs along the northeastern rim of the valley while State Route 111 runs for about 30 miles along the southwestern rim of the valley and serves as the main arterial highway between almost all Coachella Valley cities. A four-lane expressway now known as State Highway 86 opened in the early 1990s as a "special" bypass (hence, it was known as State Highway 86S until the "S" suffix was dropped) of the former two-lane portion of Highway 86. Historic signs designating the original route of U.S. Route 99 through the area may be found along present-day Indio Boulevard through Indio and Harrison Street through Coachella.

Public transportation in the valley is provided by the SunLine Transit Agency based in Thousand Palms, which was among the country's first transit agencies to totally convert to alternate fuel vehicles, including full-sized buses powered by fuel cells.

The Palm Springs Airport provides service to many North American destinations. Amtrak trains serve North Palm Springs and its coaches provide a connection to Metrolink Los Angeles regional commuter rail at Moreno Valley station. Greyhound buses link the Valley with the Los Angeles metropolitan area, Calexico on the Mexican border, and points east.

Notable people

The area has been a magnet for Hollywood stars since the 1930s when Charles Farrell and Ralph Bellamy founded the Racquet Club of Palm Springs. Bing Crosby would later found the Blue Skies Trailer Park in Rancho Mirage, unique for its expensive trailer homes each with its own individual theme. In the mid-century celebrities known to stop by Palm Springs included Humphrey Bogart, John Barrymore, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Mary Pickford, Judy Garland, Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, and Jack Benny, who did numerous broadcasts of his radio show from Palm Springs.

Farrell, after whom a street in Palm Springs is named, would later be elected mayor. Farrell Drive is built on the path of the Palmdale Railroad, a narrow-gauge horse-drawn railroad right-of-way originally built to serve the proposed town of Palmdale. The town was never built and the railroad was abandoned after a few years of operation. The ties were used to build one of the area's earliest residences and the Cornelia White House still stands today in downtown Palm Springs.

Medal of Honor recipient Captain William McGonagle was a graduate of Coachella High School and made the valley his home after his retirement. Mitchell Paige was another Medal of Honor veteran who lived in Palm Desert and has a middle school in La Quinta named after him. Jacqueline Cochran, founder and director of the Women Airforce Service Pilots lived her last years in Indio. In 2005, Microsoft CEO Bill Gates reportedly bought and owns a home in The Vintage Club Country Club in Indian Wells.

The main road into Palm Springs International Airport, named simply "Airport Road", was renamed Kirk Douglas Way on October 17, 2004. Douglas, a major area benefactor, lived in the valley for more than fifty years and is credited with spearheading the drive to modernize the area over those five decades. His son, actor Michael Douglas, is said to own a residence in Palm Springs with his wife, actress Catherine Zeta-Jones.

Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz were instrumental in forming the exclusive Thunderbird Heights tract in Rancho Mirage, once the home of President Gerald Ford and his wife Betty. According to Palm Springs Life magazine, that same tract inspired the name in late 1954 for the Ford Thunderbird. The magazine incorrectly cites that a favorite vacation spot for General Motors executives, Palm Desert's Eldorado Country Club, inspired the name for Cadillac's top model the year before — though Cadillac had chosen the name five years before the club's founding in an internal competition. Local automotive history indicates that designer Raymond Loewy penned the Studebaker Avanti in his Palm Springs home. Especially since the 1950s, Palm Springs and nearby golf clubs are hailed as the "playground of celebrities". However it is said that celebrities travel or reside in the Palm Springs area inlesser numbers as compared to yesteryear, but the area's "star power" made a comeback in the 2000s.

Ball and Arnaz helped finance construction of the Indian Wells Country Club. Founded in 1956 with their winter residence on DesiLu Court, Indian Wells became a major factor in "down valley" growth in the 1970s and 1980s. A mostly gated community, Indian Wells has one of the highest per capita income of any small town in the United States, while nearby Coachella, a short distance southeast on State Route 111 is the third poorest city of the 10,000–50,000 population range in the nation, though that is rapidly changing as the area develops. A memorial to Eisenhower can be found on the front lawn of Indian Wells City Hall, also features the local veterans memorial plaque to represent the community's 800 veterans, a high number of war veterans per ratio of its predominantly senior citizen population. Coachella has the Vietnam War veterans' memorial to represent their community's high representation of armed forces volunteers, a large percentage had Spanish surnames since the city's population are over 90 percent Latino.

Many other celebrities, past and present, have called the area home such as actor Paul Burke. Among those who grew up in the area:

  • Vanessa Marcil is a La Quinta native and attended Indio High School.
  • Suzanne Somers spent a part of her childhood in Cathedral City and attended Palm Springs High School.
  • Billy Steinberg grew up in Palm Springs and worked at the Dave Freedman Grape Farm in Thermal.
  • Alison Lohman is a native of Palm Springs and grew up in Palm Desert.
  • Tyler Hilton is also a native of Palm Springs and graduated from La Quinta High School. Hilton performed a concert in the school theatre in 2006.
  • Cameron Crowe grew up in a rural home near Indio.
  • Rich Newey grew up in Bermuda Dunes.
  • Alan O'Day grew up in Coachella.
  • Aubrey O'Day was a 2001 graduate of La Quinta High School.
  • Josh Homme attended Palm Desert High School.
  • Tony Reagins, General Manager of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, is an Indio native and attended Indio High school.
  • Edward White, football player of the San Diego Chargers and Minnesota Vikings is an Indio native and attended Indio High school.
  • Jenna Ortega is a native of Indio.

U.S. President John F. Kennedy was a frequent guest of Frank Sinatra, and a plaque in one of the pews of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Palm Desert marks the spot where Kennedy would usually sit during Mass.

That same area in Palm Desert once served as a training ground for General George Patton's Third Army troops and tank battalions; today, the site is home to the El Paseo shopping district. Patton also trained in a huge plot of desert stretching from Chiriaco Summit just off the eastern end of the valley northward almost to Amboy along U.S. Route 66 in the Mojave Desert. Tank tracks from those maneuvers are still visible today in the open desert and a museum dedicated to Patton is located in Chiriaco Summit. Patton was also a frequent guest at the Whittier Ranch House in Indio, a grand adobe structure which had faced the possibility of demolition as the ranch lands surrounding it were being developed. A grass roots organization had petitioned the city to preserve the structure for use as a VFW post; it has instead been restored and retained as the clubhouse for the new Whittier Ranch housing development. It is also now a California state historic site.

Sonny Bono ran a restaurant in downtown Palm Springs. Frustrated by the lack of cooperation he faced from the city council over a new sign for the restaurant, the entertainer took matters into his own hands and ran for mayor. He retained local conservative talk radio host Marshall Gilbert (heard regularly on KNWQ) as his campaign manager in a successful bid that not only put Bono back in the public eye, but fueled his later campaign for a seat on the United States Congress, a position he held until his death in a skiing accident in 1998. His widow, Mary (now Mary Bono Mack), filled the vacancy left by her husband and later campaigned successfully on her own. She was defeated by Democrat Raul Ruiz in the 2012 election, and moved to Florida. Both Sonny Bono and Frank Sinatra are buried at Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City.

The La Quinta Resort and Club, a series of bungalows built in 1926 in what was then known as Marshall's Cove is the oldest resort in the valley. Frank Capra wrote the script for 1937 Lost Horizon poolside there, in the La Quinta Cove where the resort is located. Capra died in La Quinta and is buried in the nearby Coachella Valley Public Cemetery.

So fond was Walt Disney of his property at the Smoke Tree Ranch in Palm Springs that he often wore a tie tac which was in the shape of the Smoke Tree Ranch logo. Disney reluctantly sold the property to help finance the construction of Disneyland. Partners, bronze sculptures of Disney standing next to Mickey Mouse in each of the Disney theme parks clearly show the brand on Disney's tie tac.

Clint Eastwood formerly owned a restaurant called the Hog's Breath Inn in Old Town La Quinta. The restaurant is currently owned by the Kaiser Restaurant Group, but maintains the Clint Eastwood inspired motif.

TV producer and media mogul Merv Griffin owned a home and ranch which is now part of the PGA West community. It was known as the "Griffin Ranch", but the land was sold and became an equestrian ranch housing tract and was annexed by the city of La Quinta.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Valle de Coachella para niños

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