Just ten minutes north of San Francisco, Mill Valley sits along the eastern slope of Mount Tamalpais bordered on three sides by the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, Muir Woods National Monument, Mt. Tamalpais State Park and watershed. John Reed founded Mill Valley subsequent to the acquisition of a large land grant in 1834. Reed built a sawmill in 1836 on Cascade Creek to provide wood for the construction of his house. The mill, which gave Mill Valley its name, is now restored and stands among the towering redwoods in Old Mill Park, a few blocks from downtown. The charming downtown plaza is home to antique stores, hip boutiques, bookstores, The Outdoor Art Club, a theater and a great selection of restaurants, bars, cafes and music venues. Over the years, a variety of legendary rock stars, artists, authors, celebrity chefs, business executives and political radicals have chosen to call Mill Valley home. The town tradition of annual events includes The Dipsea Race (the 2nd oldest U.S. race behind the Boston Marathon), The Mill Valley Film Festival and The Fall Art Festival. Additionally, Mill Valley is an outdoors-lovers paradise offering virtually unlimited hiking and biking opportunities, a dog park, a nine-hole public golf course and easy access to the beach. Surrounded by majestic redwoods or nestled along a winding road, many Mill Valley homes have a peaceful and rural feel allowing homeowners to forget their close proximity to the city of San Francisco. Mill Valley is highly regarded as a desirable place to live with an easy commute, great school and a vibrant community spirit.