By George Segarini, President & CEO
Over the years, Tuolumne County, with its many attractions, has become more and more popular as a vacation playland. People come from all over the world to view the beauty of our landscape and relish the history of the Gold Rush era.
As locals, we sometimes take for granted this wonderful place in which we live. It’s always nice to pause, stop and think about this beautiful place and the lifestyle we all enjoy.
From Yosemite National Park to the Stanislaus National Forest, outdoor recreation abounds in Tuolumne County. When it comes to history, Columbia State Park is a preserved Gold Rush town that still thrives with local businesses, and in Jamestown, another active Gold Rush town, Railtown 1897 State Park keeps alive the history the railroad made during the early 1800s with train rides and Engine Number 3, the movie star locomotive.
Businesses of all types and sizes exist here in Tuolumne County. Most popular is the “mom and pop” operation, which is a small storefront with few employees operated by the owners. There are entrepreneurs that have started their own small business of manufacturing to see it grow to providing products in 16 different countries. From there, larger retailers are evident with the likes of Walmart, Lowe’s and Kohl’s stores. The high-tech industry is not to be left out—Tuolumne County is home to a company that manufactures heating devices for computer chips and a software company that sells all over the world.
Once known for mineral extraction of gold and the resource of timber, changes have diminished these roles in the local economy—not to say they are forgotten. Gold is now a recreational activity for visitors as they pan in local streams for the rich, bright yellow nuggets that still flow. The forest continues to grow trees, and more and more it is being realized that local timber production puts many people to work rather than buying lumber from outside the country.
Education in the community is a source of pride for residents as our schools always perform above state and federal levels. To complement elementary and high schools, Columbia Community College provides two years of college classes in one of the most beautiful campuses in the state.
So whether you are here for vacation or working as a local resident, this land is your land; enjoy all the wonders it has to offer.