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Chances are good you're going to be on or crossing State Route 99 at some point during a road trip in the California Countryside. Highway 99 was built right around when cars became king - a road connecting Mexico and Canada and uniting California, Oregon, and Washington with them on an endless ribbon of highway. In California, it formed a neat crease along the state's magnificent Central Valley. A number of communities grew around 99, including the city of Tulare.

For More Information

Tulare Chamber of Commerce
220 E. Tulare Avenue
Tulare, CA 93275-1435
Tel: (559) 686-1547
Fax: (559) 686-4915
Email: info@tularechamber.org
www.tularechamber.org

But the story of Tulare started well before that. Founded in 1892 by the Southern Pacific Railroad to serve as the railroad's San Joaquin Valley headquarters, Tulare has since grown into a progressive city with a strong economic base and a slogan that declares it to be the "center of agriculture in the world."

Tulare is located in California's agricultural heartland. On its western edge, the county's geography is flat and agricultural. About a third of the county is covered by the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Sequoia National Park, Kings Canyon National Park, Sequoia National Forest and Sequoia National Monument all touch the county. The giant sequoias are found only on the western slopes of the Sierra, and some of the most impressive stands are within Tulare County.

Tulare is the nation's No. 2 agricultural county; gross farm revenue in 2002 was $3.2 billion. The county's dairy industry is also the largest in the nation, and indeed the world. Its half a million milking cows (with another 400,000 or so in reserve) accounted for $1.1 billion, making milk the first billion-dollar commodity for any one county. Other top agricultural products include citrus, cattle, grapes, alfalfa, cotton, feed corn, stone fruit (peaches, plums, nectarines), ornamental trees and olives.

Travelers will find Tulare is a friendly, inviting destination with a strong sense of community, culture and history. Downtown Tulare has a postcard-like setting graced by red brick walkways, antique-style benches and streetlights and beautiful, stately trees.

Filled with attractive and historic buildings, downtown is also the central location for the city's landmark mural and monument program. Spearheaded by Tulare Cultural Arts Foundation, the program has turned several blank walls into vivid and educational scenes that tell the Tulare story.

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