Ellensburg is a rodeo city and a college town. It's an art and music destination with easy access to the outdoors. And it's a renewable energy leader with an agricultural foundation.
On the north side of town is Central Washington University, which
first opened its doors as the Washington State Normal School in 1891,
two years after Washington became a state. The normal school became
Central Washington College of Education in 1937, Central Washington
State College in 1961, and Central Washington University in 1977.
About 9,000 students attend CWU's Ellensburg campus. Its nearly
year-round offerings of events and activities bring vibrancy to the
Ellensburg boasts a successful lineup of festivals and community
events year round that bring in tourists, entertain the locals and
celebrate the town's history, including Spirit of the West, Dachshunds
on Parade, Jazz in the Valley and Buskers in the Burg.
The city also is a leader in renewable energy. Wind farms are scattered
throughout the valley, and a community solar electric project gives
Ellensburg residents an opportunity to invest in locally produced
energy and receive a credit on their electric bill in return.
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The League of American Bicyclists has recognized Ellensburg as a Bicycle Friendly Community. Ellensburg received a Silver Level award, joining only 73 others that have been so recognized across the country. The award recognizes Ellensburg's commitment to bicycling through bike promotion, education, infrastructure and pro-bicycling policies.