Provo, Utah

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Provo, Utah

Introduction to Provo, Utah

Incorporated in 1849, the Utah city of Provo was named for French-Canadian explorer Etienne Provost, who first explored the area in 1825. Settled by Mormons in the late 1840s, Provo soon came to be known as the "Garden City" due to its substantial assortment of trees, fruit orchards, and gardens. The year 1875 was a significant one in Provo history, marking the founding of Brigham Young Academy, later to evolve into Brigham Young University (BYU), the largest church-affiliated university in the nation. Since that time, the city and its university have enjoyed a symbiotic connection, growing hand-in-hand to the point where today's Provo can boast a budding high-technology industry and sporadic national attention from the university's academic and sports programs.

Situated about 45 miles south of Salt Lake City, Provo is the county seat of Utah County. Highways serving the city include Interstate 15 (which connects Provo to Salt Lake City), U.S. Route 89 and U.S. Route 189. Closest cities to Provo are Orem (5 miles to the north) and Springville (6 miles to the south). According to 2005 U.S. Census figures, Provo is Utah's second-largest city (barely edging West Valley City in population).

Things to do in Provo

Every July, Provo is host to America's Freedom Festival, one of the nation's largest celebrations of America's Independence. The festival consists of over 30 events which take place throughout a 21 day period commencing on Flag Day (June 14) and ending on Independence Day (July 4). The anchor event is The Stadium of Fire Spectacular, which takes place in BYU's Cougar Stadium. The month of December is the timeframe for the annual WinterFest in Downtown Provo, a series of festive events starting with the early December Christmas Parade and culminating with New Year Eve's First Night, a public celebration marking the passage from the old year to the new with dances, children’s activities and the midnight Firework Finale.

Cultural sites in Provo start with BYU's first class Museum of Art which has housed world-famous exhibits such as the Masada and Dead Sea Scrolls as well as the Vatican's Etruscan Exhibit. Other cultural venues in the city include the Pioneer Museum, BYU's Monte L. Bean Museum, and the BYU Arboretum. The Sundance Ski Resort is home to the Sundance Film Festival and Summer Theater. The resort also offers a number of recreational activities, including fly fishing, hiking, mountain biking, and downhill and cross-country skiing.

The Provo sports scene centers on collegiate athletics in the form of the Brigham Young University Cougars. The BYU athletic program sponsors teams in football, basketball, baseball, volleyball, and track & field. Utah County's only professional sports team is located five miles away in the neighboring city of Orem. The Orem Owlz are a Minor League Baseball rookie-league affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Owlz play in the Pioneer League.

Major league professional sports are less than an hour's drive away. Salt Lake City is home to a number of pro teams, including:

  • Basketball: Utah Jazz (National Basketball Association)
  • Arena Football: Utah Blaze (Arena Football League)
  • Soccer: Real Salt Lake (Major League Soccer)

Also playing in Salt Lake City are the Salt Lake Bees, a Minor League Baseball Triple-A affiliate of Major League Baseball's Angels. West Valley City, located only 8 miles from Salt Lake City and 40 miles north of Provo, is home to hockey's Utah Grizzlies who play in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL).

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High Points

Provo strengths, compared to Peers (similar size places nationally) or State (other places in Utah):

Category Trophy
Walking and Biking to Work
(vs. Peers)
Top 2% trophy Provo Walking and Biking to Work
Short Commute Times
(vs. Peers)
Top 9% Provo Short Commute Times
College Educated Adults
(vs. State)
Top 10% Provo College Educated Adults
Racial Diversity
(vs. State)
Top 10% Provo Racial Diversity
Affordability of Property Taxes
(vs. Peers)
Top 14% Provo Affordability of Property Taxes
Low Violent Crime
(vs. Peers)
Top 16% Provo Low Violent Crime
Public Transportation Use
(vs. State)
Top 18% Provo Public Transportation Use

Comparative Profile of Provo, Utah

Comparing Provo to similar size places nationwide (Peers) and to other places in Utah (State):

Ratings range from 1 (lowest) to 10 (highest).

The People

Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Children Under 5 Years Old 9 4
Female Share of the Population 7 10
Male Share of the Population 4 1
Racial Diversity 4 10
Senior Citizens 1 3
Age of the Population 1 1
Well-Paid Single Men 1 1


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Average Household Size 10 6
Portion of People Married 8 2


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
College Educated Adults 8 10
Median Family Income 2 2
People in Middle Class or Better 1 1
People Above Poverty 1 1

Commute & Sprawl

Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Walking and Biking to Work 10 10
Short Commute Times 10 9
Working at Home 9 5
Public Transportation Use 5 9


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Affordability of Property Taxes 9 4
Affordability of Rents 8 7
Studio & One-Bedroom Rentals 8 10
Housing Recently Built 7 5
Seasonal and Vacation Housing 6 4
People Living Alone 1 4


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Low Violent Crime 9 5
Low Property Crime 7 6

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Provo Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 338 miles NE of Las Vegas, Nevada
County Utah
Metro Area Provo - Orem
Standard Zip Codes 84601, 84602, 84604, 84606
P.O. Box Zip Codes 84603, 84605
Phone Area Codes 801
Time Zone Mountain (-7 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 40.233
Longitude -111.657

Provo Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)
Distance 1.2 miles
Jan Temp 23 to 39 F
Apr Temp 40 to 64 F
Jul Temp 60 to 93 F
Oct Temp 40 to 68 F
Annual Precip 20.1 inches
Distance 5.7 miles
Jan Temp 20 to 39 F
Apr Temp 37 to 63 F
Jul Temp 59 to 92 F
Oct Temp 40 to 67 F
Annual Precip 20.2 inches
Distance 10.9 miles
Jan Temp 20 to 37 F
Apr Temp 38 to 64 F
Jul Temp 59 to 92 F
Oct Temp 40 to 67 F
Annual Precip 21.5 inches
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Provo Population (2000)

Category Count Percent
Total Population 105,166 100%
Male 50,572 48.1%
Female 54,594 51.9%
Under 18 23,408 22.3%
18+ 81,758 77.7%
65+ 6,020 5.7%
Median Age 22.9
Average Family Size 3.4
White 93,094 88.5%
African-American 486 0.5%
Asian 1,924 1.8%
American Indian & Alaskan 846 0.8%
Other 5,368 5.1%
Mixed Race 2,566 2.4%
Hispanic (included in categories above) 11,013 10.5%

Estimated Provo Population Growth 2000-2005

Category Value
Est. 2005 Population 113,459
Growth 8,293
Growth % 7.9%

Provo Ancestry

(From 2000 Census, as reported by individuals)

Note: This is national, not racial, ancestry, so, e.g., the Census doesn't have categories for Hispanic and African-American people. CityTownInfo is currently gathering additional ancestry data for this site.
Ancestry Percent
English 29.1%
Other (often includes Hispanic and African American) 19.8%
German 8.5%
US/American 5.6%
Danish 5.1%
Scottish 3.5%
European 3.1%
Irish 3.1%
Swedish 2.9%
Norwegian 2.6%
British 2.2%
Italian 2.2%
French (except Basque) 1.6%
Welsh 1.4%
Swiss 1.3%
Dutch 1.3%
Scandinavian 1.3%
Scotch-Irish 0.8%
Canadian 0.5%
Polish 0.5%
Russian 0.3%
Northern European 0.3%
French Canadian 0.3%
Portuguese 0.3%
Austrian 0.2%
Australian 0.2%
Finnish 0.2%
Hungarian 0.2%
Greek 0.2%
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Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

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

Sundance (84604)

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

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Pop. Median Family
Income (2000)
Provo 105,166 $36,393
Lindon 8,363 $63,513
Orem 84,324 $51,214
Pleasant Grove 23,468 $54,182
Spanish Fork 20,246 $51,209
Springville 20,424 $48,845
Vineyard 150 $55,625

Provo Public Libraries

Provo City Library
Provo, Utah
(801) 852-6651
Library Web Site

library logo

More Information for Librarians

Provo Hospitals

(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
1034 NORTH 500 WEST
(801) 373-7850
Emergency Service: Yes

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Provo High Schools (2004)

(Sorted by Number of Students)

Serves 1,832 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 21.6

3570 N 650 E
Serves 1,662 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 24.5

A Non-traditional School
Serves 337 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 14.8

1991 S STATE
A Non-traditional School
Serves 50 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 11.1

243 E 2320 N
A Non-traditional School
Serves 15 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 13.6

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City, State Similarity   1 Person Houses 65+ College Grads Commute Minutes Family Income Kids 0-4 Non White Pop. Poverty Prop. Crime Seasonal Housing Viol. Crime
      loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose
1. Logan, Utah 93.5   17.8% 7.1% 34.5% 14 $33,784 9.5% 11.1% 42,670 22.7% 23.5 0.6% 0.8
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