Local Life and Lore in Sacramento

Now that you've arrived, here's how to talk (and drive) like a Sacramento native.

California State Flag painted on brick wall

By: Kris Bordessa
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KEY TERMS AND PHRASES

Sac: Longtime residents are more likely to refer to their hometown as Sac, Sacto or Sactown than the more accurate and bigger mouthful of Sacramento.

Sac Bee: Likewise, the major daily newspaper, officially the Sacramento Bee, is more often referred to as the Sac Bee.

Sac State: Noticing a pattern? The California State University, Sacramento is known locally as simply Sac State.

Delta Breeze: Sacramento summers can get firecracker hot. Residents breathe a collective sigh of relief when the Delta Breeze pulls cool air from the Pacific Ocean to ease the heat.

The Big Tomato: Sacramento has its fair share of nicknames, some of them not so popular. Escape the ire of residents by avoiding terms like The Big Tomato, Sack-o-Tomatoes and Sacra-tomato.

Mather: A former Air Force Base, Mather Field was reopened as a cargo airport in 1995.

The Fabulous Forties: It’s the most prestigious neighborhood in Sacramento, and the most expensive. Bounded by J and Folsom, from 38th to 47th streets, the Fabulous Forties have been home to many prominent residents, including Ronald Reagan during his term as governor.

Cal Expo: Home to the California State Fair, this facility is also home to the only live harness racing on the West Coast and the Cal Expo RV Park. Special events such as concerts and rodeos are also held here.

Negro Bar: A former African-American gold rush settlement situated on Lake Natoma, now a popular swimming hole.

GETTING AROUND

Capital City Freeway: Is it 80? Or 50? Or both? Local drivers cruising over downtown Sacramento on the highway eliminate confusion and call it the Capital City Freeway.

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