Myth: Bakersfield summers are the hottest.
Fact: Compared to San Francisco we are hot, but San Francisco has one of the coldest summers in the continental United States. Compared to the rest of the country we are only the 40th hottest city. Phoenix, Key West, Las Vegas, Brownsville, and Miami rank as the top five. San Francisco ranks as the third coldest out of over 200 cities. Click here to see the complete list.
Myth: Bakersfield is just a small town.
Fact: The Bakersfield Metropolitan Statistical Area is approaching a million people.
Myth: Bakersfield has the worst air quality.
Fact: Bakersfield’s median air quality index for 2015 was moderate (73) under the new more stringent standards, the same rating as the Los Angeles/Long Beach area. The Riverside/San Bernardino County was worse at 87. Although the air quality isn’t great, it has shown dramatic improvement and is typical for southern California. For comparison purposes, Bakersfield's air quality is much better than Paris, London, Berlin, Rome, Geneva or Tokyo. Bakersfield ranks in the top 25% for cleanest air in the World Health Organization Urban Ambient Air Pollution Database. This is a database of over 3000 world cities.
Myth: Bakersfield has poor quality schools.
Fact: Bakersfield covers a large geographical area. School performance varies widely by area. Schools that have high concentrations of low income non English speakers tend to perform poorly. Schools in more affluent English speaking areas do much better. Bakersfield has public schools that have the highest performance level (blue) for all subjects on the California School Dashboard . Unlike other California cities, there are affordable homes ($200,000 to $300,000) available to attend these top tier schools. Bakersfield also has a large community college and a California State University.
Myth: People in Bakersfield are uneducated
Fact: Again, Bakersfield covers a large geographical area, and educational attainment varies widely with location. Bakersfield is roughly the size of the San Gabriel Valley, but the San Gabriel Valley is broken up into 31 small towns. The linked maps compare Bakersfield with the San Gabriel Valley. In both maps there are areas where most of the people have college degrees, and there are areas where they don’t. Click here to view maps that show the percent of adult population with 4 year college degrees or higher.
Myth: Nobody would want to move to Bakersfield
Fact: Bakersfield ranked as one of the fastest growing cities in the nation when comparing the 2010 and 2000 census. Apparently a lot of people want to move here. Click here for more information.
Myth: There is nothing to do in Bakersfield
Fact: Here are some things to do in Bakersfield and nearby areas.