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City of Norco
Lake Norconian Pavilion
Lake Norconian Pavilion
Official seal of City of Norco
Seal
Motto(s): 
"Horsetown USA"
Location in Riverside County and the state of California
Location in Riverside County and the state of California
Norco, California is located in the Los Angeles metropolitan area
Norco, California
Norco, California
Location in the Los Angeles metropolitan area
Norco, California is located in California
Norco, California
Norco, California
Location in California
Norco, California is located in the United States
Norco, California
Norco, California
Location in the United States
Country United States
State California
County Riverside
Incorporated December 28, 1964
Government
 • Type Council-Manager
Area
 • Total 14.08 sq mi (36.46 km2)
 • Land 13.86 sq mi (35.89 km2)
 • Water 0.22 sq mi (0.57 km2)  2.22%
Elevation
640 ft (195 m)
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 26,316
 • Density 1,920.03/sq mi (741.31/km2)
Time zone UTC-8 (Pacific)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP code
92860
Area code(s) 951
FIPS code 06-51560
GNIS feature IDs 1652819, 2411265

Norco is a city in Riverside County, California, in the United States. Norco prides itself on being a "horse community," with horse trails, hitching posts, and corrals aplenty, and city ordinances requiring construction to have a "traditional, rustic... Western flavor." It was given the name Horsetown, USA as a result of this.

As of the 2020 census, the city population was 26,316, down from 27,063 at the 2010 census.

History

The city's name is an abbreviation of "North Corona". It was named after the North Corona Land Company.

Norco had its "grand opening" on Mother's Day, May 13, 1923. It was later incorporated as a city on December 28, 1964.

Geography

Norco is located at 33°55′25.4″N 117°33′42.1″W / 33.923722°N 117.561694°W / 33.923722; -117.561694 (33.923729, −117.561695).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.3 square miles (37 km2) of which 14.0 square miles (36 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2), or 2.22%, is water.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1950 1,584
1960 4,964 213.4%
1970 14,511 192.3%
1980 19,732 36.0%
1990 23,302 18.1%
2000 24,157 3.7%
2010 27,063 12.0%
2019 (est.) 26,604 −1.7%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010

At the 2010 census Norco had a population of 27,063. The population density was 1,895.4 people per square mile (731.8/km2). The racial makeup of Norco was 20,641 (76.3%) White (56.4% Non-Hispanic White), 1,893 (7.0%) African American, 248 (0.9%) Native American, 844 (3.1%) Asian, 59 (0.2%) Pacific Islander, 2,514 (9.3%) from other races, and 864 (3.2%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8,405 persons (31.1%).

The census reported that 22,666 people (83.8% of the population) lived in households, 75 (0.3%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 4,322 (16.0%) were institutionalized.

There were 7,023 households, 2,831 (40.3%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 4,353 (62.0%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 777 (11.1%) had a female householder with no husband present, 453 (6.5%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 354 (5.0%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 61 (0.9%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 1,030 households (14.7%) were one person and 458 (6.5%) had someone living alone who was 65 or older. The average household size was 3.23. There were 5,583 families (79.5% of households); the average family size was 3.53.

The age distribution was 5,488 people (20.3%) under the age of 18, 2,798 people (10.3%) aged 18 to 24, 7,854 people (29.0%) aged 25 to 44, 8,303 people (30.7%) aged 45 to 64, and 2,620 people (9.7%) who were 65 or older. The median age was 39.5 years. For every 100 females, there were 136.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 146.7 males.

There were 7,322 housing units at an average density of 512.8 per square mile, of the occupied units 5,702 (81.2%) were owner-occupied and 1,321 (18.8%) were rented. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.9%; the rental vacancy rate was 3.8%. 18,572 people (68.6% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 4,094 people (15.1%) lived in rental housing units.

According to the 2010 United States Census, Norco had a median household income of $82,074, with 9.9% of the population living below the federal poverty line.

2000

At the 2000 census there were 24,157 people in 6,136 households, including 4,945 families, in the city. The population density was 1,714.8 people per square mile (662.0/km2). There were 6,277 housing units at an average density of 445.6 per square mile (172.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 82.4% White, 6.1% African American, 0.8% Native American, 1.2% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 6.4% from other races, and 3.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 22.8%.

Of the 6,136 households 37.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.7% were married couples living together, 10.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.4% were non-families. 13.7% of households were one person and 4.5% were one person aged 65 or older. The average household size was 3.2 and the average family size was 3.4.

The age distribution was 22.4% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 37.7% from 25 to 44, 24.5% from 45 to 64, and 6.6% 65 or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 128.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 137.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $62,652, and the median family income was $66,204. Males had a median income of $41,599 versus $30,652 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,710. About 3.3% of families and 5.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.9% of those under age 18 and 2.2% of those age 65 or over.

Horse community

As a horse community, there are few sidewalks in the city of Norco; instead there are horse trails, and riders can ride to town and tie their horses at the many hitching rails and corrals placed close to businesses. Many horse-related associations are a part of the city, including the Norco Horsemen's Association and the Norco Junior Horsemen's Association. Politics in Norco also are dominated by concerns about horses and animal-keeping versus suburbanization, a battle that has played out over development in the Norco Hills. In that area, which borders eastern Corona and Riverside, an influx of Orange County commuters are buying homes for $500,000 and up that have few provisions for animal-keeping. The original spirit of the town's incorporation was to promote "City living in a rural atmosphere."

In 2006, Norco began promoting itself as "Horsetown U.S.A." and received a federal trademark. A large cement mural with this logo and reliefs of horses can be seen on the freeway near the I-15 southbound onramp at 6th St.

Norco is also the home of the Norco Animal Rescue Team (NART). NART was founded after the October 2003 wildfires that savaged San Bernardino County and San Diego County. During the fires, Norco citizens banded together to provide a place of refuge for horses and other animals being evacuated from the fire areas. In the aftermath of these fires, the community of Norco recognized a need for an organized group to assist in the evacuation of mainly large animals from floods, fires and other dangers. NART's main purpose is to rescue large animals, mainly horses, from dangerous situations such as being stranded in areas from which they cannot remove themselves, such as canyons or ravines, using the Anderson Sling and a helicopter. Such major rescues have been accomplished twice, and NART has mobilized during every major fire that has hit southern California since 2004.

The largest event highlighting Norco's community and lifestyle is the annual Norco Fair, run by community volunteers. Tickets for the fair are in the form of colorful button pins. Each year a contest is held to design the button. Buttons are sold in the weeks before the Fair by teenage girls competing to be the next Miss Norco. Buttons must be worn at all time by patrons of the Fair or they risk being locked in "jail" by the Fair's marshals.

Norco's largest event center, George Ingall's Equestrian Event Center, at 6th St. and Crestview, is a popular location for weekend horse shows and community events, and is the home of the Norco PRCA rodeo and annual Norco Fair. George Ingall's Equestrian center has 2 covered horse arenas and other amenities. The arena is open for free public riding to Norco residents several days a week.

2014 marked Norco's 50th birthday. The town planned a year-long celebration with various events, including the citizen's gift to the city, a Veterans Memorial.

Norco bank robbery shootout

In popular culture

  • In Sons of Anarchy [e.g., as discussed in season 7, episode 7 ("Greensleves")], Nero buys his uncle's ranch in Norco, as Nero's retirement destination.

Economy

Major employers

According to the City of Norco, the major area employers are the Corona-Norco Unified School District with 5,216 employees, California Rehabilitation Center with 1,146 employees, and Naval Surface Warfare Center with 1,010 employees.

Infrastructure

Public safety

Norco contracts out for law enforcement services with the Riverside County Sheriff's Department through a regional station on Clark Avenue.

The city of Norco contracts for fire and paramedic services with the Riverside County Fire Department through a cooperative agreement with CAL FIRE.

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