Puyallup, Washington, is a growing city of 37,000 people. It is located about 35 miles south of Seattle, at the foot of Mount Rainier. The city was founded as an agricultural community in 1877. Flowers, hops, and berries were the main crops, and the city's agricultural roots are celebrated today with large events such as the Daffodil Parade and the Puyallup Fair. The city's unique name was given by its founder, Ezra Meeker. Puyallup is the name the first European settler in the region gave to the local Native American tribe. It translates to "generous people" in their language.
Retail and health care are the two major industries that provide jobs in Puyallup. The city's retail sector serves an estimated 400,000 people in Pierce and King counties. The city's health-care industry is anchored by Good Samaritan Hospital, the regional medical center for Eastern Pierce County. GSH employs more than 2,000 people.
Other large industries in Puyallup are construction, finance, insurance, manufacturing, technical services, and transportation and warehousing. Major employers in the region include:
The Puyallup Fair is the largest single event that takes place annually in the state of Washington, as well as the sixth-largest fair in the United States. More than one million people attend the fair over 17 days every September. As a result, the fair generates $19 million in revenue, has 50 full-time employees, and more than 7,000 part-time employees. The fair contributes to the overall success of Puyallup's visitor industry, which directly employs more than 1,200 people.
Downtown Antique District: Located at the center of Puyallup, this old-fashioned main street is home to numerous antiques stores. The quaint shops and nearby restored homes contribute to the small-town feel of Puyallup.
South Hill: This neighborhood is known as the regional shopping hub of Pierce County. Most notably, it is home to the South Hill Mall, an indoor shopping center with more than 100 stores. South Hill is one of the fastest growing sections of Pierce County, with stores and homes being constructed at a rapid pace. Residential neighborhoods in South Hill are made up of mostly single-family homes in planned developments.
Meeker Mansion: The Meeker Mansion is a 17-room Italianate Victorian that was home to Puyallup's founder and first mayor, Ezra Meeker and his wife, Eliza. Construction on the mansion began in 1887 and finished in 1890, and the Meekers lived in the home for 20 years. The mansion is open to the public and is listed on the National Register of Historic Sites.
Karshner Museum: This unique museum is one of the few in the country that is operated by a school district. It houses a collection of more than 10,000 historical artifacts and intriguing objects that were left to the Puyallup School District by Dr. and Mrs. Warner Karshner as a memorial to their son Paul, who died from polio in 1924.
Arts Downtown: This outdoor art gallery is a rotating and permanent collection of exhibits that are cared for by a nonprofit, volunteer organization. The gallery is free to the public and is open year-round.
The city of Puyallup is proud of its recently constructed city hall. The building was dedicated in August 2008 and is a model for environmental stewardship and sustainable design. The new city hall includes natural ventilation and daylight, excellent indoor air quality, water and energy saving features, and an environmentally friendly roof and rainwater system.
Puyallup is home to Pierce College Puyallup, which is part of the Pierce College District 11, a community college system that is one of the largest educational providers in the state of Washington. Nearly 3,000 students are enrolled at Pierce's campus in Puyallup. The college awards associate's degrees in arts and sciences, pre-nursing, business, and its professional/technical program. The college also has vocational certificate programs.
Puyallup is served by one local newspaper, The Herald. It is part of the Seattle-Tacoma television market, the 14-largest television market in the country. The market is served by 15 full-power stations, most of which have their offices in Seattle. Major stations include:
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