About the Tri-Cities

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The Tri-Cities is located in southeastern Washington State at the confluence of the Columbia, Snake, and Yakima rivers. The Tri-Cities is the fourth largest Metropolitan Area in the state of Washington. With a 2013 population of 268,200, the major communities are Kennewick, Pasco, Richland and West Richland. Since 2000, the Tri-Cities is the fastest growing Metropolitan Area in Washington State. For more information on cost of living, housing, major employers, activities, climate and more check out the TRIDEC2014 Tri-Cities Fact Sheet.


Fun in the Sun

Outdoor recreation in our area is convenient and fun for all ages, from hiking Badger Mountain, to enjoying all forms of water recreation on our rivers. Our local vineyards thrive with 300 sun filled days each year. We have over 160 wineries that are located within one hour drive of the Tri-Cities. Explore the new Hanford Reach National Monument, hike along the White Bluffs or enjoy the Sacagawea Heritage Trail all beautifully set along the longest free flowing section of the Columbia River. For more information on things to do check out the Visitor & Convention Bureau shop, wine, dine guide for the Tri-Cities (link).


Largest Farmers Market

Our community is deeply rooted in agricul­ture, the Tri-Cities proudly celebrates the bounty of harvest with food festivals and farm­ers' markets that are like no other. Each of the cities of Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland has a Farmers' Market. The Market is a chance to sip, sample and purchase direct from the grower. Fruits and vegetables piled high on a flatbed pickup; corn picked just hours before the market; the sweet aroma of homemade bread; fresh jellies and preserves; one-of-a-kind hand-crafted treasures and the friendly din of a bustling crowd greet­ing friends and neighbors. The Pasco Farmers Market is the largest open-air, fresh produce farmers market in Washington State. Open Wednesdays and Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. to Noon, May through October, located in Downtown Pasco.


Trails Along the Columbia River

The community has done a great job creating public tails along the Columbia River and preserving our water front. The Sacagawea Heritage Trail is a recreational and educational trail along twenty-three miles of beautiful Columbia River shoreline in Tri-Cities, Washington. Friends of Badger Mountain, a local non-profit group, is on a mission to create a 20 mile long ridge trail over each of our local mountains (Badger Mountain, Candy Mountain and Red Mountain). A second local non-profit group Tapteal Greenway is working on a 30 mile shoreline trail along the Yakima River all the way to Benton City. When both of these groups are successful the community will enjoy a 50 mile Ridgesto River Loop Trail.


Local Arts Scene

Art in the Park and the Tumbleweed Music festival are just two of the annual events held in the parks along the Columbia River. See Art& Music Festivals - Performing & Visual Arts in theTri-Cities Washington Region for a complete listing of our local events. Enjoy concerts hosted by the 3 Rivers Folk Society performed right here in our CUUC sanctuary or the Tri-Cities wonderful production of the Nutcracker each winter put on by the Mid-Columbia Ballet Company. We also have concerts by Mastersingers and the Mid-Columbia symphony.


Geology

The Tri-Cities area experienced some of the largest fresh water floods known to have happened anywhere on the planet. 15,000 years ago during the last ice age, huge glaciers pushed down out of Canada into Washington & Idaho. The glaciers in Idaho blocked several rivers and built up glacial Lake Missoula across western Montana. When the ice dam broke, a giant wall of fresh water raced across eastern Washington and temporarily filled our valley with up to 900 feet of water and formed glacialLake Lewis. You can still find evidence today of these great flood events when you hike to the summit of Badger Mountain.


Local History


Learn about Pasco's history at the Franklin County Museum, or Kennewick's history at the East Benton County Museum. The Hanford Reach Interpretive Center in Richland has interesting science exhibits and information about the history of Hanford.