Affectionately dubbed "The Apricot Capital of the World", Patterson prides itself as being a rural, small town surrounded by rich agricultural land. The Patterson Apricot Fiesta is the town's signature event, drawing thousands of participants every year. The city also hosts the Annual Art and Wine Gala and is home to the Patterson Repertory Theatre.
Patterson was the fastest-growing city in Stanislaus County and the second fastest-growing city in California in 2005. Patterson's population is approximately 22,000. Patterson Unified School District has one high school, one middle school, and several elementary schools.