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Moorpark, California

City of Moorpark
General law city[1]
Location in Ventura County and the state of California
Location in Ventura County and the state of California
City of Moorpark is located in USA
City of Moorpark
Location in the United States
Country United States
State California
County Ventura
Founded 1887
Incorporated 1983-07-01[2]
 • Type Council-Manager[1]
 • Mayor Janice S. Parvin[3]
 • State Senator Fran Pavley (D)[4]
 • Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D)[4]
 • U. S. Congress Julia Brownley (D)[5]
 • Total 12.799 sq mi (33.149 km2)
 • Land 12.579 sq mi (32.580 km2)
 • Water 0.220 sq mi (0.569 km2)  1.72%
Elevation[7] 515 ft (157 m)
Population (April 1, 2010)[8]
 • Total 34,421
 • Estimate (2013)[8] 35,149
 • Density 2,700/sq mi (1,000/km2)
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
Zip Code 93021-2804 (General Delivery), 93020 (P.O. Box)[9]
Area code(s) 805[10]
FIPS code 06-49138
GNIS feature ID 1652754
Website .gov.moorparkcawww

Moorpark is a city in Ventura County in Southern California. Moorpark was founded when the application for the Moorpark Post Office was granted on June 1, 1900. The townsite of Moorpark was owned and surveyed by Robert Poindexter and his wife, Madeline. The town has experienced a great amount of growth since the late 1970s. The population was 34,421 at the 2010 census, up from 31,415 at the 2000 census.


  • The name 1
  • History 2
  • City divisions and neighborhoods 3
  • Transportation 4
  • Economy 5
    • Top employers 5.1
  • Major highways 6
  • Geography 7
    • Climate 7.1
  • Demographics 8
    • 2010 8.1
    • 2000 8.2
  • Moorpark High School 9
  • Events 10
  • Egg City 11
  • Notable residents 12
  • See also 13
  • References 14
  • External links 15

The name

The origin of the name "Moorpark" is unknown, but several sources have been suggested. Of these most sources agree that its origin was Admiral Lord Anson's estate Moor Park in Hertfordshire, England where he introduced the apricot in 1688.[11][12][13] It is mainly believed that the town of Moorpark is named after the Moorpark Apricot, which used to grow in the area. This was confirmed by Robert Poindexter, the founder of Moorpark, in 1927. One other theory of the name is that when the Southern Pacific Railroad was surveying the local land in the 19th century for its railway, someone in the party said that the area, with its sloping hills, looked like the Scottish Moors. Hence the name Moorpark.


The valley where Moorpark is located was originally inhabited by the Chumash. The area was part of the large Rancho Simi land grant given in 1795 to the Pico brothers (Javier, Patricio, and Miguel) by Governor Diego de Borica of Alta California.

Robert W. Poindexter, the secretary of the Simi Land Company, received the land that made up the original townsite of Moorpark when the association was disbanded in 1887. Moorpark was founded in 1900 when the application for a post office was submitted. The application lists that there was already a railroad depot in the town.[14] The town grew after the 1904 completion of a 7,369-foot (2,246 m) tunnel through the Santa Susana Mountains, which allowed the Southern Pacific Railroad to establish a depot there, a depot which lasted until 1965.

Moorpark was one of the first cities to run off nuclear power in the entire world, and the first in the United States. For one hour on November 12, 1957 this fact was featured on Edwin R. Murrow's "See It Now" television show.[15] The reactor, called the Sodium Reactor Experiment was built by the Atomics International division of North American Aviation at the nearby Santa Susana Field Laboratory. The Sodium Reactor Experiment operated from 1957 to 1964 and produced 7.5 megawatts of electrical power at a Southern California Edison-supplied generating station.[16]

Moorpark College opened on September 11, 1967. Moorpark College is one of the few colleges that features an Exotic Animal Training and Management Program.

Twenty years later, Moorpark was incorporated as a city on July 1, 1983.

In February 2005, a Siberian Tiger named Tuffy that escaped from a local residence was shot and killed in one of Moorpark's parks. This created a great deal of uproar, because the Animal Control officers used a gun instead of a tranquilizer to kill the tiger, primarily because the tiger could not be shot from the proper angle for a tranquilizer to prove effective. Candlelight vigils were held for the late Tuffy. The couple who owned the tiger had moved from a licensed facility in Temecula, California, to an unlicensed facility in the Moorpark area of Ventura County. They lost their U.S. Department of Agriculture exhibitor license because they failed to notify the department of the move within 10 days. The wife pleaded guilty to a federal misdemeanor count of failing to maintain records of exotic felines. The husband pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice, making false statements and failing to maintain proper records.[17] Each was sentenced to home detention, three years probation, and fined $900.[18]

Just a month later, in March 2005, the fairly complete remains (about 75%) of an unusually old mammoth, possibly the rare Southern mammoth (Mammuthus meridionalis), were discovered in the foothills of Moorpark at the site of a housing development.[19]

In 2006, the Moorpark city council transferred governance of their library from the Ventura County library system to their own newly created their city library system, much like nearby Thousand Oaks. The library, which opened in 1912, recently celebrated its centennial.[20]

On February 28, 2006, a housing proposal, North Park Village, which would have added 1,680 houses on 3,586 acres (15 km2) in the north-east area of the city, was defeated by a landslide in a city election.[21]

City divisions and neighborhoods

  • "Old Town Moorpark" is the area surrounding High Street, and is the historic center of the city. A feature of the downtown area are the pepper trees that line High Street, planted by Robert Poindexter who was responsible for the plotting and mapping of the town. This area also features the High Street Arts Center (a Performing Arts center operated by the City of Moorpark), and various restaurants and businesses.
  • The Peach Hill and Mountain Meadows neighborhoods are south of the Arroyo Simi, and most of the homes here were built within the last 30 years. Moorpark High School is in this area, as well as many parks, including the Arroyo Vista Park and Recreation Center, the city's largest park. This area contains a large part of the city's population.
  • Campus Park is dominated by Moorpark College. An additional substantial development is occurring to the north of the existing city, in the area of the Moorpark Country Club.


  • The city of Moorpark has a mass transit bus system, known as the Moorpark City Transit.


Top employers

According to the City's Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports,[22] the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees (2011) # of Employees (2012)
1 Moorpark Unified School District 825 1,147
2 PennyMac Loan Services NA 756
3 Moorpark College 750 608
4 Kavlico 350 400
5 Pentair Pool Products 377 375
6 Target 150 175
7 AG Machining NA 135
8 Boething Treeland Farms 122 121
9 American Board Assembly 115 87
10 Kohl's 89 84

Major highways

SR 118 just before the intersection with SR 23 in Moorpark


Moorpark is located at 34°16'52" North, 118°52'25" West (34.281056, -118.873561).[23]

Central Moorpark lies in a valley created by the Arroyo Simi river.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 12.8 square miles (33 km2). 12.6 square miles (33 km2) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) of it is water. The total area is 1.72% water.


With its close proxomity to Los Angeles, Moorpark too has a Subtropical-Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification Csb on the coast, Csa inland), and receives just enough annual precipitation to avoid either Köppen's BSh or BSk (semi-arid climate) classification.

Climate data for Moorpark, California
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 68
Average low °F (°C) 40
Average precipitation inches (mm) 4.18
Source: The Weather Channel.[24]



The 2010 United States Census[27] reported that Moorpark had a population of 34,421. The population density was 2,689.4 people per square mile (1,038.4/km²). The racial makeup of Moorpark was 25,860 (75.1%) White, 533 (1.5%) African American, 248 (0.7%) Native American, 2,352 (6.8%) Asian, 50 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 3,727 (10.8%) from other races, and 1,651 (4.8%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10,813 persons (31.4%).

The Census reported that 34,421 people (100% of the population) lived in households, 0 (0%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 0 (0%) were institutionalized.

There were 10,484 households, out of which 4,863 (46.4%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 6,966 (66.4%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 1,113 (10.6%) had a female householder with no husband present, 507 (4.8%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 483 (4.6%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 58 (0.6%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 1,337 households (12.8%) were made up of individuals and 434 (4.1%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.28. There were 8,586 families (81.9% of all households); the average family size was 3.55.

The population was spread out with 9,459 people (27.5%) under the age of 18, 3,631 people (10.5%) aged 18 to 24, 8,825 people (25.6%) aged 25 to 44, 10,051 people (29.2%) aged 45 to 64, and 2,455 people (7.1%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34.7 years. For every 100 females there were 98.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.1 males.

There were 10,738 housing units at an average density of 839.0 per square mile (323.9/km²), of which 8,182 (78.0%) were owner-occupied, and 2,302 (22.0%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.0%; the rental vacancy rate was 2.9%. 26,688 people (77.5% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 7,733 people (22.5%) lived in rental housing units.


As of the 2000 population density is 1,651.9 inhabitants per square mile (637.7/km²). There are 9,094 housing units at an average density of 478.2 per square mile (184.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city is 74.42% White, 5.63% Asian, 1.52% African American, 0.47% Native American, 0.15% Pacific Islander, 13.95% from other races, and 3.87% from two or more races. 27.81% of the population are Hispanic of any race.

There are 8,994 households out of which 54.7% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 72.0% are married couples living together, 9.7% have a female householder with no husband present, and 14.4% are non-families. 9.9% of all households are made up of individuals and 2.2% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 3.49 and the average family size is 3.71.

In the city the population is spread out with 34.2% under the age of 18, 8.6% from 18 to 24, 32.3% from 25 to 44, 20.4% from 45 to 64, and 4.5% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 32 years. For every 100 females there are 99.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 98.1 males.

According to a 2007 estimate,[29] the median income for a household in the city is $90,109, and the median income for a family is $96,532. Males have a median income of $55,535 versus $35,790 for females. The per capita income for the city is $25,383. 7.0% of the population and 4.3% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 8.6% of those under the age of 18 and 7.3% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

Moorpark High School

  • The Moorpark High School mascot is the Musketeer.
  • The Academic Decathlon team of Moorpark High School has a tradition of success. They have won the national championship four times since 1999 and in 2008 set the record for the highest team score in the history of the competition. The 2009 National Championship team met with President Barack Obama in June 2009.
  • Moorpark High School's football team lost 51 consecutive games to Carpinteria High School, a national record that ended in 1997 en route to the school's first football CIF championship. The two teams have not played since.


A few events are held in the Moorpark area during the year, most notably Moorpark "Country Days", a single day in late September or early October, American Civil War battle reenactments in early-November, an "Apricot Festival", usually in the Spring or Summer, and an annual fireworks celebration on the third of July every year. The July 3rd fireworks are popular around the rest of Ventura County, as people can go to the Moorpark fireworks on the 3rd, and still see their own local city's fireworks on July 4.

Egg City

In 1961, Julius Goldman founded Egg City, which was a massive chicken farm north of Moorpark, with many chicken coops spread over acres of concrete with millions of chickens in them. Most of the roads to the ranch were lined by large palm trees, which are still present on the site to this day. The main office building had a giant chicken statue on the top of it. Local residents were somewhat irked by the farm, when the smell of it wafted to Moorpark on windy days. The odors also commonly flowed to the nearby town of Fillmore. The Pacific ocean can be seen from the property, although it is very far inland. The business suffered a setback in 1972, when more than 3 million chickens were slaughtered because of the threat of Newcastle disease. There were three well sites on the property and a manmade lake near the main entrance gate. Egg gathering was done from 36 houses by hand, with workers placing eggs onto plastic flats while riding electric carts. Liquid, dry and shell eggs were processed at the facility, with yolk and albumen available in individually.The farm finally closed in 1996. In early December 2006, a wildfire destroyed the dilapidated remains of Egg City.[30]

Notable residents

  • Frankie Banali, rock drummer (Quiet Riot)
  • Kelli Berglund, actress
  • Walter Brennan, screen actor [31]
  • John Chester, documentary filmmaker, TV director, and cinematographer
  • Jan Ebeling, German-American equestrian, who competed at the 2012 Summer Olympics
  • F. Gary Gray, music video and film director ("Friday", "Italian Job" (2003), "Straight Outta Compton")
  • Tim Hanshaw, former NFL player (1995 drafted in the 4th round by the San Francisco 49ers)
  • The Pitas, Family of Dennis Pitta who played football at Moorpark High School and then went on to play at BYU and now is playing for the NFL Ravens, winning a Super Bowl with them.[32]
  • Gary Sinise, actor[33]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Comprehensive Annual Financial Report: Fiscal Year Ending June 30, 2014". Moorpark, CA. Retrieved February 10, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Moorpark, CA". Retrieved 2007-04-21. 
  3. ^ "City Council". City of Moorpark. Retrieved January 4, 2015. 
  4. ^ a b "Statewide Database". UC Regents. Retrieved December 15, 2014. 
  5. ^ "California's 26th Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved October 5, 2014. 
  6. ^ "2010 Census U.S. Gazetteer Files – Places – California".  
  7. ^ "Moorpark".  
  8. ^ a b "Moorpark (city) QuickFacts".  
  9. ^ "USPS - ZIP Code Lookup - Find a ZIP+ 4 Code By City Results". Retrieved 2007-04-21. 
  10. ^ "Moorpark Area Code". Retrieved 2007-04-21. 
  11. ^ "Apricot, Moorpark" Tree Guide. Arbor Day Foundation. Accessed 15 February 2014
  12. ^ Dried Apricots: History Coosemans Specialty Produce Accessed 15 February 2014
  13. ^ The Journal of Sir Walter Scott by Sir Walter Scott: May 27, 1828 The Literature Network. Accessed 15 February 2014
  14. ^ The Moorpark Story, Norma Gunter, 1969
  15. ^,0,2679300.story?coll=la-class-realestate One of the first cities to run on nuclear power
  16. ^ Nuclear Energy in California
  17. ^ The San Francisco Chronicle 
  18. ^ The San Francisco Chronicle 
  19. ^ Saillant, Catherine; Griggs, Gregory W. (April 9, 2005). "Mammoth's skeleton uncovered in L.A". The Seattle Times. 
  20. ^ Willer-Allred, Michele (January 28, 2012). "Moorpark launches library's centennial celebration". Ventura County Star. 
  21. ^ Willer-Allred, Michele (December 20, 2012) "Housing development again proposed for site near Moorpark College" Ventura County Star
  22. ^ City of Moorpark CAFR
  23. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  24. ^ "MONTHLY AVERAGES for Moorpark, CA".  
  25. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  26. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  27. ^ "2010 Census Interactive Population Search: CA - Moorpark city". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2014. 
  28. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  29. ^®=null%3Anull&_keyword=&_industry=
  30. ^ Rasmussen, Cecilia (December 17, 2006) "Fire writes the final chapter for the world's largest egg ranch" Los Angeles Times
  31. ^ ((cite news|url=
  32. ^ Dennis Pitta
  33. ^

External links

  • Official website
  • Moorpark Chamber of Commerce
  • Moorpark City Library
  • Moorpark @ The Official Conejo Valley Website, a Web site with local history, events, and community information.
  • Moorpark Acorn Newspaper
  • Moorpark Patch, a website with local news, events and community information.

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