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West Fargo, North Dakota
Nickname(s): 
City on the Grow
Location of West Fargo, North Dakota
Location of West Fargo, North Dakota
Country United States
State North Dakota
County Cass
Area
 • Total 16.28 sq mi (42.16 km2)
 • Land 16.04 sq mi (41.54 km2)
 • Water 0.24 sq mi (0.63 km2)
Elevation
896 ft (273 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 25,830
 • Estimate 
(2020)
38,194
 • Density 2,310.78/sq mi (892.19/km2)
 • Demonym
West Fargoan
Time zone UTC−6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
ZIP code
58078
Area code(s) 701
FIPS code 38-84780
GNIS feature ID 1032733
Highways I-94, I-94 Bus., US 10

West Fargo is a city in Cass County, North Dakota, United States. It is, as of the 2020 Census Estimates, the fifth largest city in the state of North Dakota with a population estimated at 38,194, and it is one of the state's fastest growing cities. West Fargo was founded in 1926. The city is part of the Fargo-Moorhead, ND-MN Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Geography

West Fargo is located at 46°52′18″N 96°53′42″W / 46.87167°N 96.89500°W / 46.87167; -96.89500 (46.871749, -96.894966).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.72 square miles (38.12 km2), of which, 14.44 square miles (37.40 km2) is land and 0.28 square miles (0.73 km2) is water.

Climate

This climatic region is typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, West Fargo has a humid continental climate, abbreviated "Dfb" on climate maps.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1940 707
1950 1,632 130.8%
1960 3,328 103.9%
1970 5,161 55.1%
1980 10,099 95.7%
1990 12,287 21.7%
2000 14,940 21.6%
2010 25,830 72.9%
2020 (est.) 38,194 47.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
2020 Estimate

According to the 2008-2012 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, the ancestry is as follows:

2010 census

At the 2010 census, there were 25,830 people, 10,348 households and 6,823 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,788.8 inhabitants per square mile (690.7/km2). There were 10,760 housing units at an average density of 745.2 per square mile (287.7/km2). The racial makeup was 93.5% White, 2.0% African American, 1.0% Native American, 1.4% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.8% of the population.

There were 10,348 households, of which 36.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.8% were married couples living together, 9.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 34.1% were non-families. 26.4% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 3.04.

The median age was 32.6 years. 26.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 9.3% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 32.9% were from 25 to 44; 23.2% were from 45 to 64; and 7.8% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.6% male and 50.4% female.

Transportation

West Fargo works with North Dakota Department of Transportation, Fargo-Moorhead Metropolitan Council of Governments (Metro COG), and Fargo Moorhead Metro Area Transit to meet the transportation needs of West Fargo citizens. In addition, The West Fargo Municipal Airport, 6 miles Northwest of Fargo, is operated by the West Fargo Airport Authority and has a paved & lighted 3,300 x 50 foot runway.

Annual Events

Annual West Fargo events include:

  • Big Iron, an annual event located at the West Fargo Fairgrounds, features farm equipment and over 900 exhibit booths. Over 87,000 attendees took part in the three-day Big Iron in 2013.
  • Bonanzaville Pioneer Days includes a parade, food, demonstrations, and tours.
  • Hamfest an annual event located at the West Fargo Fairgrounds, features presentations and equipment for sale.
  • Nite to Unite, hosted by the West Fargo Police Department, is an annual community summer event. Past activities have included: Police, Fire, FM Ambulance, and Military demonstrations; free food; face painting; mascots; and community service display booths.
  • Red River Valley Fair includes entertainment, arts and crafts shows, livestock, fireworks, and a petting zoo.
  • The West Fargo Public Library hosts its Summer Reading Program to encourage reading for children, teens, and adults.
  • The West Fargo Shakers holds an annual New Year's Eve Party on December 31, all proceeds benefit the Back Pack Program.
  • West Fest, held in September, is a community event for all ages, including a softball tournament, a pancake feed, a parade, and firefighter’s ball.

Sites of interest

Education

West Fargo School District

West Fargo School District serves the city of West Fargo, much of southwestern Fargo, the suburb of Reile's Acres, and the communities of Horace and Harwood. Seven West Fargo residents are elected to serve on the school board, these residents govern the school district and serve 4-year terms.

The board voted unanimously on Monday, March 26, to hire Beth Slette, a 25-year veteran of the district and current West Fargo assistant superintendent of elementary education. Slette took over for Dr. David Flowers who had served as superintendent since 2010. Flowers was named the North Dakota Superintendent of the Year by the North Dakota Association of School Administrators in 2012. Holly Ripley, an assistant principal at West Fargo High School, was named the 2016 National Assistant Principal of the Year.

History

The West Fargo School District (then referred to as "School District No. 6 in Cass County") was formed on 9 October 1876. In January 1887, Nina Hall was hired to teach for two months. She was paid $40. "This first school was large enough to handle the pupils of the district until 1910 when it became necessary to build the Fairview School in the western part of the district. The two schools continued to operate until 1923." In 1922, North School was built, which included two classrooms and a gymnasium. The following year, Jennie Worman Colby became the first principal. In 1939, a new school building was built for grades 7-12. Today the building, The Clayton A. Lodoen Community Center, houses the West Fargo Community High, Clayton A. Lodoen Kindergarten Center, and West Fargo Public Library.

Growth
The City of West Fargo's growth has caused the building of new schools to meet the needs of its students. Aurora Elementary School (located in the Eagle Run development in southern West Fargo) opened for the 2007–2008 school year and Sheyenne 9th Grade Center opened on August 27, 2007 in response to the district's growing enrollment and overcrowding at West Fargo High School (2007 was the first year that freshmen were educated outside the High School since 1993). The Sheyenne 9th Grade Center may serve as a second middle school for West Fargo, as it was decided in March 2009 to be voted on by the public. In January 2015, Superintendent David Flowers presented a 10-year RSP Associates demographics study which "predicts the district will continue to add between 400 and more than 600 students each year".

Schools

The school district operates two early childhood schools (Clayton A. Lodoen Kindergarten Center and Osgood Kindergarten Center), ten elementary schools (Aurora Elementary, Eastwood Elementary, Freedom Elementary, Harwood Elementary, Horace Elementary, Independence Elementary, L.E. Berger Elementary, Liberty 5th Grade, South Elementary, and Westside Elementary), two middle schools (Cheney Middle and Liberty Middle) and three high schools (West Fargo High School, Sheyenne High, and Community High).

Hulbert Aquatic Facility

In 2016, the school district began construction of an $18.5 million competitive pool facility at the L.E. Berger Elementary School. The facility will include the pool used for the USA Swimming trials for the 2016 Summer Olympics at the CenturyLink Center Omaha in which Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte competed. The Omaha pool which was built by Myrtha Pools was dismantled after the competition and moved to West Fargo. It is named for the Hulbert family which donated $1 million for the project.

Technology

Since it began in 2009, West Fargo School's Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) program has taken top honors in several competitions, including the Technology Student Association State Competition in 2012, the Bison BEST competition in 2009, and students won first place for Best Web Page Design at the 2009 Frontier Trails BEST Regional Robotics Competition

In 2015, "an education partnership" was "launched to help high school students in West Fargo, Fargo and Northern Cass school districts prepare for college and 21st century technical careers." While a business partnership already exists between West Fargo High School and Microsoft, Cass County Career and Technical Education Consortium hopes to expand to industries to include "agricultural science, diesel technology, health science, aviation, information technology and engineering".

A group of Liberty Middle School students won ‘Best of State’ in the 2014–15, 2015–16 and 2016–17 Verizon Innovative App Challenge.

National awards

In 2016, "West Fargo High School teacher Michelle Strand earned the Presidential Award of Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching as named by President Barack Obama."

North Dakota State Teacher of the Year Awards

1996 - Marcia Kenyon, Eastwood Elementary School
1998 - Vickie Boutiette, District Reading
2008 - Verna Rasmussen, Westside Elementary School
2013 - Andrea Noonan, Cheney Middle School
2014 - Aaron Knodel, West Fargo High School
2017 - Nanci Dauwen, Sheyenne High School

Notable people

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