Fort Collins enjoys a national reputation as a community where the American dream comes true. Residents are part of a thriving city that still maintains the heart of a small community that cares. From high-tech business campuses to flower-lined alleyways to thriving locally owned businesses, positivity abounds.
Colorado State University adds to the diversity of the community and creates numerous cultural and educational opportunities. It has well-respected mens and womens sports programs. Fort Collins boasts a vibrant arts scene (how many cities have colorful painted pianos upon which anyone can tickle the ivories?) and residents can choose from an array of performing arts offerings, including top-tier small theaters, symphonies, ballet, choral groups, an opera company and traveling national shows at the city-owned Lincoln Center.
Visitors are welcome at the city’s many award-winning breweries for tours and tastings; start at one and you’ll have the choice from almost a dozen of which to visit next. Each summer, Fort Collins plays host to large festivals, including Tour de Fat and Bohemian Nights New West Fest, which often features top national musical acts. Small music venues abound and multiple locations offer free outdoor summer concerts.
Fort Collins is home to over 40 city parks scattered throughout the town. A bike path system provides miles of paved trails popular with local bicyclists, runners and walkers. Whether spring, summer, fall or winter, there are plenty of fun options for the whole family. Farmers’ markets are popular year-round and countless restaurants take pride in serving locally sourced products.
The attractive cost of living, mild climate, simple lifestyle, outdoor recreation, entertainment and top-tier health care facilities attract many retirees to the area. Many of them join their children who have chosen to raise their families here. The city’s “Old Town” was even the inspiration for Main Street USA in Disneyland!
Every month it seems Fort Collins makes some sort of “Best Of” list. In 2012, Forbes ranked the city the third best place for business and careers. It’s easy to see why Money Magazine ranked Fort Collins ranked No. 2 on its 2008 Best Places to Live list, and No. 1 in 2006.
Population: 155,400 (2014 estimate) including 31,000 students at Colorado State University.
Elevation: 5,003’ and covering a land area of 55.83 square miles
Climate: Nearly 300 days of sunshine per year and 14.5 inches of precipitation
Summer humidity averages out to around 30%
Geography: 50 miles north of Denver, 42 miles east of Rocky Mountain National Park
Religion: There are over 110 churches
Median family income: $53,359
Poudre School District has 27,000 students in over 50 schools and several which house targeted programs and curriculums. There are several private and religious schools.
In Fort Collins, there are 40 parks, 56 public and private tennis courts, six golf courses (with many more in easy driving distance), 16 baseball diamonds/football fields and many pools. For boaters, there are three area lakes that accommodate most types of water-craft, including Horsetooth State Park, situated on one of the largest reservoirs and boating centers in the state.
Fort Collins is 30 minutes from the Poudre Canyon--which features Colorado's only National Wild and Scenic River--is the perfect getaway. Take a Sunday drive, raft the whitewater, hike one of the trails, picnic or camp in one of the designated spots. The city is only a few hours drive to the heart of ski country. Loveland, Breckenridge, Keystone, Copper Mountain, Vail and Steamboat Springs can be reached in around three hours.
The Denver Broncos, Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets, Colorado Rockies, Colorado Rapids and Colorado Rapids Women play their home games in Denver, about an hours drive away. Local sports teams include the Colorado Eagles professional hockey team (a farm club team for the Avalanche), the Colorado Crush arena football team, and of course the Colorado State University athletics teams.
Denver International Airport is just over an hour away and it is fifth busiest airport in the United States. This modern facility is also the largest airport in the U.S. based upon total area
University of Colorado Health (formerly Poudre Valley Health System) and Banner Health both serve residents in Northern Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska. It boasts state-of-the-art facilities and has attracted some of the country’s finest physicians in most specialties.
Major employers include Colorado State University, Poudre School District, Woodward, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Anheuser-Busch, University of Colorado Health, New Belgium Brewing and OtterBox, There are 21 Fortune 500 companies that have a presence in Larimer County.