City of Sonoma Chamber of Commerce School District Demographics
The birthplace of the State of California, the City of Sonoma is a historic community located in the heart of the Northern California wine country. A small town of 8,900 residents, Sonoma is the cultural and commercial hub of the Sonoma Valley, a larger community of 36,000 with agriculture and tourism the major tax base. Conveniently located about 45 minutes from San Francisco, Sonoma offers vine-covered hillsides, a historic downtown with an 8-acre plaza ringed with shops and restaurants, and the fruits of the valley's farming community, including world-renowned cheeses and wines.

History: Downtown Sonoma is a national historic landmark. The Mission San Francisco Solano, the last of the California missions, is the historic cornerstone of the city. Constructed in 1823 under the direction of Father Altamira, it is located on the Sonoma Plaza along with numerous other historic structures, including the Swiss Hotel, the Blue Wing Inn, the Casa Grande Barracks, the Salvador Vallejo Adobe, the Sebastiani Theater, and the Sonoma City Hall. The Vallejo Home State Park, the residence and 60-acre estate General M.G. Vallejo, the town's founder, is located four blocks off the Plaza. Sonoma was the capital of the Bear Flag republic during the twenty-five day period of the Bear Flag revolt, which ultimately led to California's entry into the union as a state. The uprising began on June 14, 1846, culminating in the raising of the Bear Flag on the Sonoma Plaza. The 150th anniversary of this event will be celebrated in Sonoma during the summer of 1996.

Wines: Sonoma Valley is a federally-designated wine appellation region, meaning that the climate, soils, and topography of the valley produce grapes of a distinctive and extraordinary character. Ranked as one of the top wine producing regions in the world, the valley boasts more than thirty award-winning wineries and, with some of the oldest vineyards and wineries in the state, is recognized as birthplace California wine-making. The Sonoma Valley appellation is honored in local restaurants by the custom of serving locally-produced vintages in distinctive blue-stemmed wine glasses.