California is a census-designated place and community in St. Mary's County, Maryland, United States. The population was 9,307 at the 2000 census. California continues to grow with the spread of population out from the older adjacent community of Lexington Park and the growth in both technology-related and defense-related jobs at the Patuxent River Naval Air Station. There are department stores and numerous shopping centers situated along Maryland Highway 235 ("Three Notch Road"). Maryland Route 4 crosses Highway 235 in California, providing access to the wide Governor Thomas Johnson Bridge and the popular weekend resort town of Solomons, Maryland on the opposite side. Bridge-bound traffic is infamous for backing up during rush hour.