is a city in Santa Cruz County
, United States
, on the coast of Monterey Bay
. The population was 10,033 at the 2000 census. Founded as "Camp Capitola" by Samuel A. Hall in 1874, Capitola was named for the heroine of The Hidden Hand
, a novel by the popular author E.D.E.N. Southworth
, favored by Hall's daughter Lulu. Capitola is known as the oldest beach resort on the West Coast
Capitola is a popular tourist town because of its trendy shops and restaurants on the shore directly connecting to a fishing wharf and its large, sandy beach.
Capitola lies west of the census-designated area of Aptos and east of the census-designated place of Live Oak.
Geography and soils
Capitola is located at (36.976250, -121.954750).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.7 square miles (4.4 km²), of which, 1.6 square miles (4.2 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²) of it (4.14%) is water.
Capitola sits on the northeast shore of Monterey Bay. Steep cliffs mark access to several popular beaches, including New Brighton Beach, or drop directly to the rocky shoreline of the Bay. Downtown Capitola sits in a depression among the cliffs so that the popular tourist and shopping area leads directly to Capitola Beach. Colorful houses and hotels line the slopes of the town leading back up to the higher clifftops.
There have been a number of historic fuel releases to the soil in Capitola; among these the following locations have been identified by the County of Santa Cruz or the California Regional Water Quality Control Board: 819 Bay Avenue, 1649 41st Avenue, 2210 41st Avenue and 1700 41st Avenue.
As of the census
of 2000, there were 10,033 people, 4,692 households, and 2,280 families residing in the city. The population density
was 6,220.2 people per square mile (2,406.1/km²). There were 5,309 housing units at an average density of 3,291.5/sq mi (1,273.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 83.84% White
, 1.17% African American
, 0.57% Native American
, 4.00% Asian
, 0.20% Pacific Islander
, 5.53% from other races
, and 4.69% from two or more races. Hispanic
of any race were 12.63% of the population.
There were 4,692 households out of which 22.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 33.1% were married couples living together, 11.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 51.4% were non-families. 37.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.11 and the average family size was 2.79.
In the city the population was spread out with 18.4% under the age of 18, 9.3% from 18 to 24, 32.8% from 25 to 44, 25.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $46,048, and the median income for a family was $59,473. Males had a median income of $47,879 versus $35,444 for females. The per capita income for the city was $27,609. About 2.0% of families and 7.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.8% of those under age 18 and 7.9% of those age 65 or over.
In the state legislature
Capitola is located in the 11th Senate
District, represented by Democrat Joe Simitian
, and in the 27th Assembly
District, represented by Democrat John Laird
. Federally, Capitola is located in California's 17th congressional district
, which has a Cook PVI
of D +17 and is represented by Democrat Sam Farr
The Monterey-Salinas metropolitan statistical (or service) area (MSA) is served by a variety of local television stations, and is the 124th largest designated market area (DMA) in the U.S. with 222,900 homes:
The Monterey-Salinas area lost its American Broadcasting Company
broadcast affiliate in 2000, when KNTV
was purchased, and then became the NBC station for the San Francisco Oakland San Jose metropolitan area. KNTV, now known as NBC11
, later moved its tower from Loma Prieta Peak
to San Bruno Mountain
, ceasing its coverage in Monterey. At that time, ABC reached an agreement with Comcast Cable to provide a slightly-customized feed of San Francisco
ABC O&O KGO-TV
for the Monterey area, branded simply as ABC 7
and occasionally referred to by the mock call letters AABC
In the summer of 1961 hundreds of birds attacked the town. Most of the birds were sooty shearwaters - a normally non aggressive species that rarely comes to shore. Alfred Hitchcock was a regular visitor to nearby Santa Cruz and read about this episode. He went on to direct a film - The Birds - based on the idea of hundreds of birds attacking humans. The reason for this attack remained unknown for over 25 years until it was discovered that the birds had been affected by domoic acid, a toxin produced by red algae.
The Capitola Classic was a skateboarding
event that received international attention and brought lots of excitement and energy to the Capitola village back in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The Capitola Classic was well known in skating circles for its annual downhill race, which was a head-to-head speed competition that drew top names in the sport, many local as well as international, including Santa Cruz, California
local John Hutson, who held the world speed record for skateboarding at 53.45 mph and dominated the event each year.