is a city in Riverside County, California, United States. The population was 51,200 at the 2010 census. Sandwiched between Palm Springs and Rancho Mirage, it is one of the cities in the Coachella Valley (Palm Springs area) of southern California. Cathedral City is the second largest in population in the Coachella Valley, second only to Indio.
The town's name derives from "Cathedral Canyon" to the south of the town, so named in 1850 by Colonel Henry Washington because its rock formations were reminiscent of a cathedral. The city itself started as a housing subdivision in 1925, but was not incorporated until 1981. The city grew in population several times over during the next two decades.
Locals gave it the nickname "Cat City", short for Cathedral. Others like historians claim that came from the reputation as a slinger gaming gulch in the late 19th century, and a safe haven for bars or saloons during prohibition of the 1920s.
Cathedral City had a downtown revitalization program started in the late 1990s, with much completed by 2005. A new City Hall was built as was the IMAX/ Mary Pickford movie theater complex, and a total of 130 acres (0.53 km2) of new or remodeled stores.
Forest Lawn - Cathedral City Cemetery and Desert Memorial Park are located in Cathedral City. These parks are across Ramon Boulevard from each other. These cemeteries are visited by many tourists because of those who are buried there. Among them are Frank Sinatra, Congressman Sonny Bono, Alice Faye, Phil Harris, "Papa" John Phillips, Jane Wyman, Dinah Shore, George Montgomery, Cameron Mitchell, Harold Robbins, Busby Berkeley, William Powell, Betty Hutton, Guy Madison, Buddy Rogers and many more.
Cathedral City hosts an annual Mexican Independence Day festival on every third weekend of September, also has an "el Grito de Dolores" to commemorate the event at the city hall/movie theater complex. The city has an economic partnership with the Mexican state of Jalisco, a large source of local immigration. Chicano folk musician Lalo Guerrero lived in Cathedral City in his final years. But these festivals have been canceled due to gang related activity.
The 2010 United States Census reported that Cathedral City had a population of 51,200. The population density was 2,353.3 people per square mile (908.6/km²). The racial makeup of Cathedral City was 32,537 (63.5%) White, 1,344 (2.6%) African American, 540 (1.1%) Native American, 2,562 (5.0%) Asian, 55 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 12,008 (23.5%) from other races, and 2,154 (4.2%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 30,085 persons (58.8%).
The Census reported that 50,905 people (99.4% of the population) lived in households, 263 (0.5%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 32 (0.1%) were institutionalized.
There were 17,047 households, out of which 6,574 (38.6%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 7,589 (44.5%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 2,291 (13.4%) had a female householder with no husband present, 1,176 (6.9%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 1,054 (6.2%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 779 (4.6%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 4,292 households (25.2%) were made up of individuals and 2,259 (13.3%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.99. There were 11,056 families (64.9% of all households); the average family size was 3.67.
The population was spread out with 13,856 people (27.1%) under the age of 18, 4,906 people (9.6%) aged 18 to 24, 12,948 people (25.3%) aged 25 to 44, 12,127 people (23.7%) aged 45 to 64, and 7,363 people (14.4%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36.0 years. For every 100 females there were 105.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 107.2 males.
There were 20,995 housing units at an average density of 965.0 per square mile (372.6/km²), of which 10,769 (63.2%) were owner-occupied, and 6,278 (36.8%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 4.2%; the rental vacancy rate was 11.0%. 30,236 people (59.1% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 20,669 people (40.4%) lived in rental housing units.
The city's several local golf resorts and tourism attractions provide a key element of the local economy for Cathedral City. It is the site of Lawrence Welk's Desert Oasis Hotel/resort located in the Cathedral Canyon Country Club. Other golf courses are the De Anza Palm Springs Country Club and Mobile Home Park, the Outdoor Resorts RV Golf Club Palm Springs, and the Doral Desert Princess Resort and Golf Club.
There is a large automotive mega-dealership known as the Palm Springs Auto Mall based on the city limits with Palm Springs, except the dealership lies in the Cathedral City side of State route 111 and Perez Road.
Cathedral City High School, opened in 1991, is a major educational and recreational center to the city. The varsity football, basketball and soccer teams had earned CIF-southern California championship runs in the late 1990s and early 21st century.
Cathedral City is also home to Mayfield College, a private college that offers career training in health care, HVAC, technology, and business.