Rio Vista is a city located in the eastern end of Solano County, California in the San Francisco Bay Area, on the Sacramento River, in the Sacramento River Delta region. The population was 4,571 at the 2000 Census.
Rio Vista was visited by a lost Humpback whale in 1985, despite being 60 miles (100 kilometers) upriver from the Pacific Ocean. The young whale, nicknamed "Humphrey", attracted throngs of curiosity seekers before he was eventually guided back to sea by rescuers. Again in May 2007, Humpbacks were sighted in Rio Vista. "Delta" and "Dawn," mother and calf, stopped at least twice in the river near the town.
Rio Vista is home to the annual Bass Festival in October.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 7.1 square miles (18.4 km²), of which, 6.8 square miles (17.5 km²) of it is land and 0.4 square miles (0.9 km²) of it (5.06%) is water.
As of 2007, there were 7,876 people, 1,881 households, and 1,286 families residing in the city. The population is predicted to be 22,000 by 2020. The population density was 676.9 people per square mile (261.5/km²). There were 1,974 housing units at an average density of 292.3/sq mi (112.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 88.34% White, 1.18% African American, 0.92% Native American, 1.60% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 4.09% from other races, and 3.85% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 11.42% of the population.
There were 1,881 households, out of which 29.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.9% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.6% were non-families. 26.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 2.92.
In the city the population was spread out with 25.0% under the age of 18, 6.1% from 18 to 24, 25.6% from 25 to 44, 23.6% from 45 to 64, and 19.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 95.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.4 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $44,534, and the median income for a family was $52,007. Males had a median income of $43,458 versus $28,665 for females. The per capita income for the city was $24,627. About 6.6% of families and 10.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.7% of those under age 18 and 2.5% of those age 65 or over.
The Trilogy at Rio Vista development, aimed at active adults, is a mile Northwest of the original city on CA-12. It is built around the 18-hole Rio Vista Golf Club. There will be between 2,800 and 3,000 homes when Trilogy is complete.
Natural gas was discovered in the Rio Vista area in 1936 and the Rio Vista Field became a major source of employment for the remainder of the 20th century. Although it is still being worked there has been a growth in agriculture, manufacturing and tourism. Rio Vista is home to the largest American producer of Belgian Endive in the USA. Craig Breedlove, five-time world land speed record holder, lives and has an engineering facility in the city.
The city is served by Rio Vista Municipal Airport and is on CA-12 between Fairfield, CA and Lodi, CA. CA-12 crosses the Sacramento River via the Helen Madere Memorial Bridge, colloquially known as the Rio Vista Bridge.