Cheyenne (/ʃaɪˈæn/ shy-AN or /ʃaɪˈɛn/) is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Wyoming and the county seat of Laramie County. It is the principal city of the Cheyenne, Wyoming, Metropolitan Statistical Area which encompasses all of Laramie County. The population was 59,466 at the 2010 census. Cheyenne is the northern terminus of the extensive and fast-growing Front Range Urban Corridor that stretches from Cheyenne to Pueblo, Colorado which has a population of 4,333,742 according to the 2010 United States Census. Cheyenne is situated on Crow Creek and Dry Creek. The Cheyenne, Wyoming Metropolitan Area had a 2010 population of 91,738, making it the 354th-most populous metropolitan area in the United States.
|City of Cheyenne|
Magic City of the Plains; Capital City (of Wyoming); The Frontier City
Location within Laramie County
Location within Wyoming
Location within the United States
|Named for||Cheyenne people|
|• Mayor||Marian Orr|
|• City||28.61 sq mi (74.10 km2)|
|• Land||28.50 sq mi (73.81 km2)|
|• Water||0.11 sq mi (0.29 km2) 0.45%|
|Elevation||6,062 ft (1,848 m)|
| • Estimate |
|• Rank||US: 564th|
|• Density||2,232.66/sq mi (862.04/km2)|
|• Urban||73,588 (US: 377th)|
|• Metro||96,389 (US: 359th)|
|Time zone||UTC−7 (Mountain)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−6 (Mountain)|
82001, 82002, 82003, 82006, 82007, 82008, 82009, 82010
|GNIS feature ID||1609077|
On July 5, 1867, General Grenville M. Dodge and his survey crew plotted the site now known as Cheyenne in Dakota Territory (later Wyoming Territory). This site was chosen as the point at which the Union Pacific Railroad crossed Crow Creek, a tributary of the South Platte River. The city was not named by Dodge, as his memoirs state, but rather by friends who accompanied him to the area Dodge called "Crow Creek Crossing". It was named for the American Indian Cheyenne tribe, one of the most famous and prominent Great Plains tribes closely allied with the Arapaho.
The construction of the Union Pacific Railroad brought hopes of prosperity to the region when it reached Cheyenne on November 13, 1867. The population at the time numbered over 4,000, and grew rapidly. This rapid growth earned the city the nickname "Magic City of the Plains".
The Wyoming State Capitol was constructed between 1886 and 1890, with further improvements being completed in 1917.
The Wyoming Stock Growers Association met at The Cheyenne Club, which allegedly acted as an interim government for the territory. Many of the WSGA's rules and regulations became state laws.
The Cheyenne Regional Airport was opened in 1920, initially serving as a stop for airmail. It soon developed into a civil-military airport, serving DC-3s and various military craft. During World War II, hundreds of B-17s, B-24s, and PBYs were outfitted and upgraded at the airfield. Today, it serves a number of military functions, as well as a high-altitude testbed for civilian craft.
Lying near the southeast corner of the state, Cheyenne is one of the least centrally located state capitals in the nation (together with cities such as Carson City, Nevada; Juneau, Alaska; and Topeka, Kansas).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 24.63 square miles (63.79 km2), of which 24.52 square miles (63.51 km2) is land and 0.11 square miles (0.28 km2) is water.
Cheyenne, like most of the rest of Wyoming, has a cool semi-arid climate (Köppen BSk), and is part of USDA Hardiness zone 5b, with the suburbs falling in zone 5a. Winters are cold and moderately long, but relatively dry, with a December average of 28.8 °F (−1.8 °C), highs that fail to breach freezing occur 35 days per year, and lows dip to the 0 °F (−17.8 °C) mark on 9.2 mornings. However, the cold is often interrupted, with chinook winds blowing downslope from the Rockies that can bring warm conditions, bringing the high above 50 °F (10 °C) on twenty days from December to February.
Snowfall is greatest in March and April, seasonally averaging 60 inches (1,500 mm), historically ranging from 13.1 inches (330 mm) between July 1965 and June 1966 up to 121.5 inches (3,090 mm) between July 1979 and June 1980, yet thick snow cover rarely stays. Summers are warm, with a high diurnal temperature range; July averages 69.4 °F (20.8 °C), and highs reach 90 °F (32.2 °C) on an average twelve afternoons annually. Spring and autumn are quick transitions, with the average window for freezing temperatures being September 29 thru May 14, allowing a growing season of 106 days. Official record temperatures range from −38 °F (−38.9 °C) on January 9, 1875, up to 100 °F (37.8 °C) on June 23, 1954, the last of four occurrences; the record cold daily maximum is −21 °F (−29.4 °C) on January 11, 1963, while, conversely, the record warm daily minimum is 68 °F (20 °C) on July 31, 1960. The annual precipitation of 15.9 inches (400 mm) tends to be concentrated from May to August and is low during fall and winter; it has historically ranged from 5.04 inches (128.0 mm) in 1876 to 23.69 inches (602 mm) in 1942.
The city averages below 60% daily relative humidity in each month and receives an average 2,980 hours (~67% of the possible total) of sunshine annually. On July 16, 1979 an F3 tornado struck Cheyenne causing one death and 40 injuries. It was the most destructive tornado in Wyoming history.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
At the 2005–2007 American Community Survey 3-Year Estimates, the city's population was 87.2% White or European American (79.3% non-Hispanic White alone), 12.7% Hispanic or Latino (of any race), 4.5% Black or African American, 2.5% American Indian and Alaska Native, 2.1% Asian and 6.4% from some other race. 22.5% of the total population had a Bachelor's degree or higher.
As of the census of 2010, there were 59,467 people, 25,558 households, and 15,270 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,425.2 inhabitants per square mile (936.4/km2). There were 27,284 housing units at an average density of 1,112.7 per square mile (429.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 77.44% European American, 2.88% African American, 0.96% Native American, 1.24% Asian, 0.20% Pacific Islander, 4.0% from other races, and 3.28% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14.45% of the population.
There were 25,558 households of which 30.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.1% were married couples living together, 12.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.3% were non-families. 33.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.92.
The median age in the city was 36.5 years. Twenty-four percent of residents were under the age of 18; 9.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 26.9% were from 25 to 44; 26.2% were from 45 to 64; and 13.5% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.3% male and 50.7% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 53,011 people, 22,324 households, 14,175 families residing in the city, and 81,607 people residing in the Metropolitan Statistical Area making it the largest city and metropolitan area in the state of Wyoming. The population density was 2,511.4 inhabitants per square mile (969.6/km²). There were 23,782 housing units at an average density of 1,126.7 per square mile (435.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 78.1% White or European American, 2.8% Black or African American, 0.8% Native American, 1.1% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 4.4% from other races, and 2.7% from two or more races. 12.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 22,324 households out of which 30.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.2% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.5% were non-families. 31.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.93.
The city has a wide range of age groups, with 24.9% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 29.7% from 25 to 44, 22.8% from 45 to 64, and 13.8% 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.7 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $38,856, and the median income for a family was $46,771. Males had a median income of $32,286 versus $24,529 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,809. About 6.3% of families and 8.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.1% of those under age 18 and 5.8% of those age 65 or over.
Cheyenne's government consists of a mayor and a city council, elected on a non-partisan basis. The mayor is elected in a citywide vote. The city council has nine members each of whom are elected from one of three wards. Each ward elects three members. The mayor's office is responsible for managing the various city departments which consist of Street/Alley, Police, Fire, Parks, Fleet Maintenance, Traffic, Sanitation, Downtown Historic District, Weed and Pest, Facilities Maintenance, and Cemetery. The Cheyenne Board of Public Utilities is owned by the city but is semi-autonomous.
Public education in the city of Cheyenne is provided by Laramie County School District #1. The district is served by four high schools, Central High on the northwest side, East High on the east side, South High on the south side, and Triumph High, also on the south side.
Government is the largest sector of Cheyenne's economy. The state of Wyoming operates a multitude of offices in downtown Cheyenne. Many area residents are employed by or are dependent on the U.S. Air Force, through F.E. Warren Air Force Base to the west of the city, or by the Wyoming National Guard.
Due much in part to work done by Cheyenne's economic development agency "Cheyenne Leads", successful steps have been taken in recent years to diversify the city's economy. Lowe's and Wal-Mart both operate distribution centers on the city's outskirts. Sierra Trading Post is headquartered in the city and also operates its distribution and fulfillment centers in the city. In addition, because of the towns cooler summers and abundant electricity supplies (both renewable and non-renewable), Cheyenne has been able to attract a number of data centers including the NCAR supercomputing center, along with a Microsoft data center, powered by bio gas and  powered by wind energy.
Cheyenne's high elevation, coupled with its position on the continent, make it one of the windiest cities in the United States. The abundance of wind makes Cheyenne an opportune place to develop wind energy. Wind turbines are currently being placed around Laramie County. Laramie County Community College is home to a leading wind energy technician program, where students learn to maintain these turbines. The opening of a Vestas wind turbine blade assembly in nearby Weld County, Colorado, as well as other alternative energy manufacturing facilities around Colorado, are transforming the region into a center for alternative energy.
The Cheyenne Parks and Recreation Department operates an Ice and Events center, swimming pool, spray park, skateboard park, two golf courses, Cheyenne Botanic Gardens (including the Paul Smith Children's Village at the Gardens), paddle boat rentals in Lions Park (summers only), cemeteries, forestry operations, community house, Youth Activity Center and a miniature golf park. The Cheyenne Parks and Recreation Department also operates a 37 miles (60 kilometers)) Greater Cheyenne Greenway system. The greenway connects parks and neighborhoods of greater Cheyenne. It includes many bridges and underpasses where travelers can avoid high traffic roads and travel above waterways and drainages. In 1996, as a result of the greenway, Cheyenne was named a "Trail Town USA" by the National Park service and the American Hiking Society.
The Cheyenne Warriors were founded as an American Professional Football League team in 2012. After playing a season in the APFL, they announced a move to the Indoor Football League. Shortly after the owner of the team died in December 2012, the Warriors announced that they were forming the new Developmental Football League. After playing several games in this new league, the team folded in May 2013.
Over fifty different locations in Cheyenne are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including:
Several districts in the city are also listed, including:
Cheyenne provides local hourly bus service from 6:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. Monday to Friday and 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. on Saturday. There is no Sunday service.
Cheyenne Frontier Days, which is held over ten days centered around the last full week in July, is the largest outdoor rodeo in the US. The events include professional bull riding, calf roping, barrel racing, steer wrestling, team roping, bronc riding, steer roping, bareback riding, and many others. During this week there are many parades and other events. Additionally there is a carnival with numerous rides, games, and shops.
Bill Henderson is an American politician and a Republican member of the Wyoming House of Representatives representing District 41 since January 10, 2017.Cheyenne Capidolls
The Cheyenne Capidolls is a women's flat track roller derby league based in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Founded in 2010, the league consists of two travel teams, which compete against teams from other leagues. Cheyenne is a member of the Women's Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA).The Capidolls remained undefeated for more than a year. The league attracted attention by raising money for the local animal shelter, and undertaking voluntary work, such as planting flowers in the city's downtown area.The league was accepted into the Women's Flat Track Derby Association Apprentice Program in January 2012, and became a full member of the WFTDA in September 2012 - the first from Wyoming.Dan Kirkbride
Dan R. Kirkbride (born October 7, 1952 in Cheyenne, Wyoming) is an American politician and a Republican member of the Wyoming House of Representatives representing District 4 since January 8, 2013.Fort D.A. Russell (Wyoming)
Fort D. A. Russell, also known as Fort Francis E. Warren, Francis E. Warren Air Force Base and Fort David A. Russell, was a post and base of operations for the United States Army, and later the Air Force, located in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The fort had been established in 1867 to protect workers for the Union Pacific Railroad. It was named in honor of David Allen Russell, a Civil War general killed at the Battle of Opequon. In 1930, the fort's name was changed to Fort Francis E. Warren. In 1949, it became Francis E. Warren Air Force Base.
Over the years, the base served as home for numerous influential American military leaders such as Carl Spaatz, Black Jack Pershing, Billy Mitchell, Walter Reed, and Mark Clark.Frontier Mall
Frontier Mall is an enclosed shopping mall located in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The 519,471-square-foot (48,260.4 m2) mall opened March 18, 1981. Managed by CBL & Associates Properties of Chattanooga, Tennessee, it is Wyoming's second biggest mall, boasting 67 shops, including five anchor stores: two Dillard's locations, JCPenney, and Planet Fitness, with one vacant anchor last occupied by Sears. Classic Frontier 9, a theater formerly operated by Carmike Cinemas and now operated by AMC Theatres, is also anchored in the rear of the mall. CBL renovated the mall in 2007, adding three restaurants on the periphery. All anchors are on one level. Sears closed in January 2018 as part of a plan to close stores nationwide.Jared Olsen
Jared Olsen (born October 10, 1987) is an American politician and a Republican member of the Wyoming House of Representatives representing District 11 since January 10, 2017.John Eklund Jr.
John Charles Eklund Jr. (born in Cheyenne, Wyoming) is an American politician and a Republican member of the Wyoming House of Representatives representing District 10 since January 11, 2011.Landon Brown
Landon Brown is an American politician and a Republican member of the Wyoming House of Representatives representing District 9 since January 10, 2017.Laramie County, Wyoming
Laramie County is a county at the SE corner of the U.S. state of Wyoming. As of the 2010 United States Census, the population was 91,738, making it the most populous county in Wyoming, but the least populous county with that distinction in United States. The county seat is Cheyenne, the state capital. The county lies west of the Nebraska state line and north of the Colorado state line.
Laramie County comprises the Cheyenne, WY Metropolitan Statistical Area.
The city of Laramie, Wyoming, is in neighboring Albany County.Marlin McKeever
Marlin Thomas McKeever (January 1, 1940 – October 27, 2006) was an American football defensive end, fullback and punter at the University of Southern California (USC) and a tight end and linebacker during his 13-year National Football League (NFL) career. He was born in Cheyenne, Wyoming.Steve Harshman
Steve Harshman is an American politician and a Republican member of the Wyoming House of Representatives representing District 37 since January 14, 2003. Harshman has served as the Speaker of the Wyoming House since January 2017.Taco John's
Taco John's is a Cheyenne, Wyoming-based fast-food restaurant featuring Mexican-inspired fast food (which it calls "West-Mex"). The chain was founded in 1969 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, and now comprises nearly 400 restaurants in about 27 states, primarily in the Midwest and Mountain regions. Potato Olés are the company's signature dish, which are bite-sized deep-fried potato nuggets coated with a proprietary blend of spices and seasonings. As of 2013, the restaurant chain had 425 locations in the United States.Tracy Ringolsby
Tracy Ringolsby is an American sportswriter. He is a columnist for Baseball America, an insider on MLB Network and has created a Rockies focused website, InsideTheSeams.com. He worked for the Rocky Mountain News in Denver, Colorado, until its closure during spring training 2009, and spent 2009-2013 as the pre-game/post-game analyst with Fox Sports Rocky Mountain/ROOTSPORTS for Rockies telecasts. He is the former president of the Baseball Writers' Association of America and was a member from 1976-2013, and rejoined the BBWAA in 2016 when employees of MLB.com, where he worked for more than four years, were admitted to the BBWAA.Wyoming Governor's Mansion
The Wyoming Governor's Mansion is the official residence of the Governor of Wyoming. The current mansion was built during 1976 in Cheyenne.
The public can tour the residence on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 8:00am to 6:00pm. There is no admission fee. The mansion is closed to tours during Cheyenne Frontier Days.Wyoming House of Representatives
The Wyoming House of Representatives is the lower house of the Wyoming State Legislature. There are 60 Representatives in the House, representing an equal amount of single-member constituent districts across the state, each with a population of at least 9,000. The House convenes at the Wyoming State Capitol in Cheyenne.
Members of the House serve two year terms without term limits. Term limits were declared unconstitutional by the Wyoming Supreme Court in 2004, overturning a decade-old law that had restricted Representatives to six terms (twelve years).
The current Speaker of the House is Steve Harshman of District 37 (Casper).Wyoming Legislature
The Wyoming State Legislature is the legislative branch of the U.S. State of Wyoming. It is a bicameral state legislature, consisting of a 60-member Wyoming House of Representatives, and a 30-member Wyoming Senate. The legislature meets at the Wyoming State Capitol in Cheyenne. There are no term limits for either chamber.
The Republican Party holds a supermajority in the current legislature, which began meeting in 2019; 50 of the 60 seats in the House and 27 of the 30 seats in the Senate are held by Republicans.Wyoming Senate
The Wyoming Senate is the upper house of the Wyoming State Legislature. There are 30 Senators in the Senate, representing an equal number of constituencies across Wyoming, each with a population of at least 17,000. The Senate meets at the Wyoming State Capitol in Cheyenne.
Members of the Senate serve four year terms without term limits. Term limits were declared unconstitutional by the Wyoming Supreme Court in 2004, overturning a decade-old law that had restricted Senators to three terms (twelve years).
Like other upper houses of state and territorial legislatures and the federal U.S. Senate, the Wyoming Senate can confirm or reject gubernatorial appointments to the state cabinet, commissions, boards, or justices to the Wyoming Supreme Court.Wyoming State Capitol
The Wyoming State Capitol is the state capitol and seat of government of the U.S. state of Wyoming. Built between 1886 and 1890, the capitol is located in Cheyenne and contains the chambers of the Wyoming State Legislature as well as the office of the Governor of Wyoming. It was designated a U.S. National Historic Landmark during 1987. The Capitol is currently closed for renovation and is scheduled to reopen mid-2019.Wyoming Supreme Court
The Wyoming Supreme Court is the highest court in the U.S. state of Wyoming. The Court consists of a Chief Justice and four Associate Justices. Each Justice is appointed by the Governor of Wyoming from a list of three nominees submitted by the judicial nominating commission, for an eight-year term. One year after being appointed, a new justice stands for retention in office on a statewide ballot at the next general election. If a majority votes for retention, the justice serves the remainder of the term and may stand for retention for succeeding eight-year terms by means of a nonpartisan retention ballot every eight years. A justice must be a lawyer with at least nine years' experience in the law, be at least 30 years old, and must also be a United States citizen who has resided in Wyoming for at least three years. Justices must retire when they reach 70 years of age.The five Justices select the Chief Justice from amongst themselves. The person chosen serves as Chief Justice for four years. However, Richard V. Thomas of Cheyenne, a justice from 1974–2001, was chief justice only for two years, 1985–1986.
|Climate data for Cheyenne Regional Airport, Wyoming (1981–2010 normals,[a] extremes 1872−present[b])|
|Record high °F (°C)||70
|Mean maximum °F (°C)||58.4
|Average high °F (°C)||39.5
|Average low °F (°C)||18.0
|Mean minimum °F (°C)||−4.8
|Record low °F (°C)||−38
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||0.33
|Average snowfall inches (cm)||5.9
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)||4.9||6.2||8.6||10.3||12.4||11.4||10.7||11.0||8.3||7.4||6.4||6.2||103.8|
|Average snowy days (≥ 0.1 in)||5.7||6.5||7.8||6.1||1.8||0.1||0||0||0.7||3.4||6.1||6.8||45.0|
|Average relative humidity (%)||52.5||54.6||56.1||54.3||55.8||53.5||51.3||51.4||51.5||50.0||53.6||54.0||53.2|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||190.7||202.6||253.1||271.9||291.9||303.2||317.5||297.4||262.3||237.0||178.8||175.4||2,981.8|
|Percent possible sunshine||64||68||68||68||65||67||69||70||70||69||60||61||67|
|Source: NOAA (relative humidity and sun 1961−1990)|
|Climate data for Cheyenne|
|Mean daily daylight hours||10.0||11.0||12.0||13.0||15.0||15.0||15.0||14.0||12.0||11.0||10.0||9.0||12.3|
|Average Ultraviolet index||2||3||5||7||9||10||10||9||7||4||2||1||5.8|
|Source: Weather Atlas |
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