Introduction to Traverse City, Michigan

Traverse City, Michigan, in Grand Traverse county, is 119 miles E of Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Traverse City History

Traverse City is named after the Grand Traverse Bay. In 1847, Captain Boardman of Naperville, Illinois, purchased the land at the mouth of the Boardman River. He, along with his son, started a saw-mill there. The advancement of the area attracted many settlers to the community. Initially "Grand Traverse City" was proposed as the name of the city, but later the villagers decided on dropping the "Grand" and naming it "Traverse City." The city was finally incorporated on May 18, 1895.

Traverse City and nearby Attractions

  • Acme Township Park
  • Alden Depot Park & Museum
  • Antrim County Park
  • Arbutus Lake
  • Bowers Harbor Beach
  • Bryant Park

Things To Do In Traverse City

The city is dotted with several sun-kissed beaches where one can head with family and friends to enjoy activities like swimming, diving, snorkeling, and parasailing. If you like a more passive relaxation, you can laze around in the beaches and watch the lovely sunset. The city also has a museum and many parks which make for great places to hangout during one's leisure time.

Traverse City Transportation

Cherry Capital is the local airport of the area.

Traverse City Higher Education

The local colleges in the city are Northwestern Michigan College and Traverse Bay Area Career-Tech Center.


Total Population 15,168
Male Share of the Population 48.1%
Female Share of the Population 51.9%
Senior Citizens 16.2%
Employed Population 16+ 7,792
Age of the Population 40


% of people married 44.1%
Average household size 2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 41%
Median Earnings25+ $0
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $0
Median Earnings With High School Degree $0


Median Family Income $66,769
% Above Poverty Level 84.5%
% Below Poverty Level 15.5%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 14 minutes
% Working from Home 5.5%
% Walking and Biking to Work 11.9%
% Using Public Transportation 1.2%


People Living Alone 38.2%
Median Gross Rent $808
Median House Value $185,500


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 13.2%
US/American 0.1%
English 12%
Irish 15.5%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Traverse City Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Medium City 119 miles E of Green Bay, Wisconsin (center to center)
Nearest Large City 164 miles NE of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
County Grand Traverse
Standard Zip Codes 49684, 49686
P.O. Box Zip Codes 49685, 49696
Phone Area Codes 231
Time Zone Eastern (-5 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 44.763
Longitude -85.62

Traverse City Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 2.8 miles
Jan Temp 14 to 27 F
Apr Temp 32 to 53 F
Jul Temp 58 to 81 F
Oct Temp 40 to 58 F
Annual Precip 33.4 inches
Distance 22.4 miles
Jan Temp 8 to 24 F
Apr Temp 29 to 51 F
Jul Temp 54 to 78 F
Oct Temp 36 to 55 F
Annual Precip 31.7 inches
Distance 36 miles
Jan Temp 9 to 26 F
Apr Temp 30 to 52 F
Jul Temp 55 to 79 F
Oct Temp 35 to 56 F
Annual Precip 32.5 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Traverse City, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Barlow Branch (49686, 49696)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Buckley 774 $38,558
Elk Rapids 1,541 $55,455
Empire 358 $88,929
Kingsley 1,605 $56,080
Lake Ann 272 $55,938
Suttons Bay 584 $80,625

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Traverse City Public Libraries

Peninsula Community Library
Traverse City, Michigan
(231) 223-7700
Traverse Area District Library
Traverse City, Michigan
(231) 932-8500

library logo

More Information for Librarians

Traverse City Hospitals

(Voluntary non-profit - Other)
(231) 935-6500
Emergency Service: Yes

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Traverse City High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

Serves 1,446 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 21.1

Serves 1,284 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 19.6

A Non-traditional School
Serves 222 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 21.1

Traverse City Colleges

Click school name for a detailed profile.

Additional Details
Traverse City Colleges
Traverse City colleges and trade schools.
Study Online in Traverse City
Historic Traverse City


Park Place Hotel between 1890 and 1901
Additional Resources
Info for Traverse City Government Officials

Are you an official in the Traverse City government or quasi-government agency such as the chamber of commerce, visitors bureau or economic development council? If so, visit our information page for government officials to see how CityTownInfo can support you.

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