14 episodes

Deep in the Mojave Desert, there is a little town with a big name and a bizarre history: California City. For decades, real estate developers have sold a dream here: if you buy land now, you’ll be rich one day. Thousands of people bought this dream. Many were young couples and hard-working immigrants looking to build a better future. But much of the land they bought is nearly worthless.  In this new podcast from LAist Studios, host Emily Guerin tells a story of money, power and deception. 

California City LAist

    • News
    • 4.5 • 1.1K Ratings

Deep in the Mojave Desert, there is a little town with a big name and a bizarre history: California City. For decades, real estate developers have sold a dream here: if you buy land now, you’ll be rich one day. Thousands of people bought this dream. Many were young couples and hard-working immigrants looking to build a better future. But much of the land they bought is nearly worthless.  In this new podcast from LAist Studios, host Emily Guerin tells a story of money, power and deception. 

    Introducing WILD by LAist Studios

    Introducing WILD by LAist Studios

    Introducing WILD by LAist Studios, a podcast about origin stories. About those moments big and small that transform people forever. Season 1 of WILD: Home Forever is a time capsule of these kinds of moments captured during a global pandemic that left a lot of us "growing up" again while stuck at home for more than a year.

    In episode 1, we meet Daisy Figueroa who went back to her childhood home and decides to transform it. In the process, she creates her own business and redefines the standard of living for people in her community. 

    Sponsors include:

    Match with a licensed therapist when you go to talkspace.com and get $100 off your first month with the promo code WILD.

    This program is made possible in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people.

    • 34 min

    Where Dreams Go To Die

    Where Dreams Go To Die

    Silver Saddle Ranch gets sold, and the people who still believe it’s worth something stage a protest. Plus, a former employee comes forward with a disturbing story.

    This program is made possible in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people.

    • 24 min
    Bonus Episode: Cashing In On The Desert

    Bonus Episode: Cashing In On The Desert

    For decades, Californians have been obsessed with trying to profit off desert land. In this bonus episode of California City, host Emily Guerin, the Desert Oracle’s Ken Layne, and artist and curator Kim Stringfellow explore the myths of the Mojave Desert as "wasteland," failed schemes and utopias, Instagram-driven tourism and coronavirus refugees. The audio was recorded during a live virtual event on September 3, 2020 and presented by LAist Studios and KPCC in partnership with The Autry Museum of the American West.

     

    California City sponsors include:

    Sun Basket is offering $35 off your order when you go right now to SUNBASKET.com/calcity and enter promo code calcity at checkout.

    Simplisafe: Try SimpliSafe today at SimpliSafe.com/CALCITY. You get free shipping and a 60-day risk free trial. There’s nothing to lose.

    Korea Tourism Organization: Visit Korea and experience delicious food, vibrant cities, and natural beauty. Please visit https://www.visitkorea.com.my/

    Caltech: Cal Tech Science Exchange provides trustworthy answers, clear explanations, and fact-driven conversation on critical topics in science and technology. Please visit scienceexchange.caltech.edu

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
1.1K Ratings

1.1K Ratings

JPBell ,

Five stars

Fantastic storytelling ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

LeoFlash ,

Interesting

I live in Bakersfield, and have been to Cal City. I had no idea that it’s history was so diabolical and dramatic!

d00dles4science ,

Fascinating binge listen

Excellent podcast! Lived in CA almost my whole life and never knew about this. Thank you Emily for not only this great podcast but helping uncover the truth and helping those affected by what happened in CA City.

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