Seattle is the largest city in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It is located in the state of Washington between Puget Sound and Lake Washington nearly 108 miles south of the U.S./Canadian Border in King County, of which it is the County Seat. As of 2005, the city had an estimated population of 573,000 and a metropolitan population of around 3.8 million. Seattle is the hub for the Greater Puget Sound region. Its official nickname is the Emerald City because of the lush evergreen trees in the surrounding area; it is also referred to as the Rainy City, the Gateway to Alaska, Queen City, and Jet City, due to the local influence of Boeing. Seattle residents are known as Seattlites.
A Seattle Snapshot
- Noah Sealth, chief of the local Suquamish Native American tribe, was one of the founders of the city. Seattle is named after him.
- Before it got the name Seattle in late 1852, the city was known as Duwamps.
- The Great Seattle Fire of 1889 burnt up most of the first Seattle downtown. It was rebuilt within a year, literally on top of the remains of the older downtown. You can still see sections of the original downtown on the colorful Seattle Underground Tour.
- 3.2 million people live in the Greater Seattle Area. About 570,000 live in Seattle itself. Read more data about Seattle.
- More than 75% of Seattle residents have internet access at home. The Seattle WiFi Map Project recently mapped out thousands of wireless networks in Seattle.
- Seattle is one of the fittest cities in the country, especially for walkers and bikers.
- Seattle has the highest per-capita music and dance attendance in the country, with 80 live music clubs (not counting the movable dance clubs and shows) and 15 symphony orchestras.
- The Seattle International Film Festival in mid-May to June showcases world film and new world filmmakers.
- Seattle has 29 professional theatres, 56 fringe theatre companies and seven theatre schools.
- Bumbershoot, over Labor Day weekend, is one of the largest entertainment festivals in the world.
- Ballard, in north Seattle, was once a Norweigan fishing village. The Alaskan fishing fleet still winters there before heading out on salmon runs.
- The Nordic Heritage Museum is the country's only museum honoring the heritage of people from the five Nordic countries.
- Ray Charles, Quincy Jones, Jimi Hendrix and Ernestine Anderson all lived in Central and South Seattle over the years.
- Seafair is a massive two-month summer festival that showcases the traditions and diversity of Puget Sound with parades, festivals, triathalons, hydroplane races and air shows.
- Alki Beach is one of the city's longest white sand beaches, 2 miles along the west side of West Seattle.
- U-Dist is the nickname of the neighborhood surrounding the University of Washington.
- The Wing Luke Museum in Chinatown/International District is the country's only museum devoted to Asian-American history, with displays on immigration, the arts and traditional medicine.