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Perris, California facts for kids

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City of Perris
Former Perris railway station
Former Perris railway station
Official seal of Perris
Location in Riverside County and the state of California
Location in Riverside County and the state of California
Perris is located in the United States
Location in the United States
Country  United States
State  California
County Riverside
Incorporated May 26, 1911
 • Type Council-manager
 • Total 31.503 sq mi (81.594 km2)
 • Land 31.393 sq mi (81.308 km2)
 • Water 0.110 sq mi (0.286 km2)  0.35%
1,453 ft (443 m)
 • Total 68,386
 • Estimate 
 • Density 2,170.78/sq mi (838.125/km2)
Time zone UTC-8 (Pacific)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP codes
92570–92572, 92599
Area code 951
FIPS code 06-56700
GNIS feature IDs 1652772, 2411403

Perris is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, located 17.6 miles (28.3 km) south of Riverside, California. At the 2010 census, the city population was 68,386, up from 36,189 at the 2000 census.


The Perris Valley was actively settled in the 1880s, a boom period for Southern California. Prior to 1880, the land was used for pastures. The coming of the California Southern Railroad led to the founding of the city around the new depot. The California Southern was built through the future town site in 1882 to open a rail connection between the present day cities of Barstow and San Diego. Due to a land title dispute at Pinacate, most of its citizens moved two miles north on the railroad and established Perris in 1885. The city is named in honor of Fred T. Perris, chief engineer of the California Southern Railroad. The city of Perris was incorporated in 1911. It originally was part of San Diego County, but in 1892 was transferred to the newly established Riverside County.

Perris now incorporates Pinacate Station which is the home of the Orange Empire Railway Museum (a.k.a. "the trolley museum") - the largest operating museum of its kind on the West Coast of the United States.

On March 20, 2007, Perris was featured on ABC's Nightline news show during its "Realty Check" segment. The story dealt with the rising trend of home foreclosures in Riverside County, and Perris was referred to as the "epicenter".

The "Farmer Boys" restaurant chain, which has many locations throughout the Inland Empire, was started in Perris in 1981.

Perris is also known for the Rock Castle house set on a hill above town.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 31.5 square miles (82 km2), of which, 31.4 square miles (81 km2) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) of it (0.35%) is water.


Perris has a Mediterranean climate, with warm to hot summers and cool winters. In the summer, highs average in the mid to high 90's, and during the winter, the lows can get as cold as 25, with averages in the mid to upper 30's.

The climate in this area is described by the Köppen Climate Classification System as "dry-summer subtropical" often referred to as "Mediterranean" and abbreviated as Csa.

Climate data for Perris, California
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 18.3
Average low °C (°F) 1.7
Precipitation mm (inches) 41
Source: Weatherbase


Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 499
1930 763 52.9%
1940 1,011 32.5%
1950 1,807 78.7%
1960 2,950 63.3%
1970 4,228 43.3%
1980 6,827 61.5%
1990 21,460 214.3%
2000 36,189 68.6%
2010 68,386 89.0%
2015 (est.) 74,971 9.6%
U.S. Decennial Census


The 2010 United States Census reported that Perris had a population of 68,386. The population density was 2,170.7 people per square mile (838.1/km²). The racial makeup of Perris was 28,937 (42.3%) White (11.0% Non-Hispanic White), 8,307 (12.1%) African American, 589 (0.9%) Native American, 2,461 (3.6%) Asian, 286 (0.4%) Pacific Islander, 24,345 (35.6%) from other races, and 3,461 (5.1%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 49,079 persons (71.8%).

The Census reported that 68,146 people (99.7% of the population) lived in households, 140 (0.2%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 100 (0.1%) were institutionalized.

There were 16,365 households, out of which 10,836 (66.2%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 9,778 (59.7%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 3,128 (19.1%) had a female householder with no husband present, 1,441 (8.8%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 1,314 (8.0%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 120 (0.7%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 1,442 households (8.8%) were made up of individuals and 383 (2.3%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 4.16. There were 14,347 families (87.7% of all households); the average family size was 4.32.

The population was spread out with 25,288 people (37.0%) under the age of 18, 7,951 people (11.6%) aged 18 to 24, 20,088 people (29.4%) aged 25 to 44, 11,711 people (17.1%) aged 45 to 64, and 3,348 people (4.9%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 25.9 years. For every 100 females there were 98.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.9 males.

There were 17,906 housing units at an average density of 568.4 per square mile (219.5/km²), of which 10,854 (66.3%) were owner-occupied, and 5,511 (33.7%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 5.5%; the rental vacancy rate was 6.8%. 44,695 people (65.4% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 23,451 people (34.3%) lived in rental housing units.

According to the 2010 United States Census, Perris had a median household income of $46,435, with 28.2% of the population living below the federal poverty line.


At the 2000 census, there were 36,189 people, 9,652 households, and 8,117 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,153.5 per square mile (445.4/km²). There were 10,553 housing units at an average density of 336.4 per square mile (129.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was predominately Hispanic, with figures as follows: 22% White, 30.9% African American, 1.5% Native American, 2.8% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 32.6% from other races, and 5.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 76.2% of the population.

The median household income was $35,522, and the median family income was $36,063. Males had a median income of $31,891 versus $24,634 for females. The per capita income for the city was $11,425. About 18.1% of families and 20.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.3% of those under age 18 and 14.2% of those age 65 or over.

There were 9,652 households out of which 56.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.2% were married couples living together, 18.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 15.9% were non-families. 12.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.7 and the average family size was 4.0.

In the city, the population was spread out with 39.6% under the age of 18, 9.9% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 13.5% from 45 to 64, and 6.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 25 years. Perris' large youthful demographics is a result of families moved into the city's new housing tracts. For every 100 females there were 96.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.2 males.


Perris had developed a Latino majority in the 1990s partly by recent immigration (esp. Central Americans and Mexicans) and the descendants of Mexican traqueros in the 1890s. In the early and mid 20th century, the town had a large Mexican-American community centered on Perris Boulevard, Ellis Road, "D" Street and Pinacate Road (see Romoland). Starting 25 years ago, a large wave of African-American families, many from South Los Angeles bought homes in affordable middle-class areas which gave Perris an above-average black percentage compared to the typical California city. There are fairly large Thai, Laotian and Cambodian communities – Southeast Asian ethnic groups which arrived in the 1980s had grown in size during the 1990s, with many more including Chinese Americans from the Los Angeles/Orange County area. Today, about one-eighth of Perris is Asian American and their representation is expected to grow further in the future.

Despite the city's image of some urban professionals ("yuppies") residing in homes now worth over $400,000 (i.e. the post-2000s May Ranch and Green Valley communities), the older sections of Perris are home to working-class and low-income residents. Much of the rural outskirts of Perris once held an image of trailer parks where economically disadvantaged whites and blacks, and migrant laborers (mostly Chicanos and Mexican immigrants) predominated before real estate values soared in the 1990s and 2000s. The Moreno Valley and Perris region recovered from two economic slumps each in the late 20th and early 21st centuries, especially after the closure and reassignment of March Joint Air Reserve Base and the later usage of the airfield by DHL corporation for its warehouse distribution center.


  • The train station scenes in the film Calendar Girl were filmed in Perris. The film starred Jason Priestley, Gabriel Olds and Jerry O'Connell.
  • The skydiving scenes in The Bucket List, starring Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson, were filmed near Perris.
  • Scenes from Eagle Eye starring Billy Bob Thornton and Shia LaBeouf were filmed in Perris.
  • Five the Hard Way (also known as Sidehackers) filmed many of its racing scenes in the western hills of Perris. A banner can be seen in the movie with the city's name on it.
  • The last scene of the film The Land of the Astronauts was shot in Perris. The film stars David Arquette, Bijou Phillips and Vivica A. Fox.
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