Westby, Wisconsin facts for kids

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Westby, Wisconsin
City
Downtown Westby
Downtown Westby
Location in Vernon County and the state of Wisconsin.
Location in Vernon County and the state of Wisconsin.
Country United States
State Wisconsin
County Vernon
Incorporated 1896
Area
 • Total 2.60 sq mi (6.73 km2)
 • Land 2.59 sq mi (6.71 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)
Elevation 1,299 ft (396 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 2,200
 • Estimate (2012) 2,253
 • Density 849.4/sq mi (328.0/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 54667
Area code(s) 608
FIPS code 55-85475
GNIS feature ID 1576571

Westby is a city in Vernon County, Wisconsin, United States. The population was 2,200 at the 2010 census.

History

ThoresonHouseWestbyWI
The Thoreson Museum, home of the Westby Area Historical Society
Westby watertower
Municipal water tower

Westby was named after general store owner and Civil War Union soldier Ole T. Westby of Biri, Norway, where many of the city's Norwegian-American settlers originated. Westby Coon-Prairie Lutheran Church in Westby was established in 1851.

Geography

Westby is located at 43°39′14″N 90°51′33″W / 43.65389°N 90.85917°W / 43.65389; -90.85917 (43.653861, -90.859034), at the headwaters of the Bad Axe River.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.60 square miles (6.73 km2), of which, 2.59 square miles (6.71 km2) is land and 0.01 square miles (0.03 km2) is water.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 524
1910 902 72.1%
1920 1,228 36.1%
1930 1,366 11.2%
1940 1,438 5.3%
1950 1,491 3.7%
1960 1,544 3.6%
1970 1,568 1.6%
1980 1,797 14.6%
1990 1,866 3.8%
2000 2,045 9.6%
2010 2,200 7.6%
Est. 2015 2,263 2.9%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 2,200 people, 929 households, and 575 families residing in the city. The population density was 849.4 inhabitants per square mile (328.0/km2). There were 996 housing units at an average density of 384.6 per square mile (148.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 98.0% White, 0.2% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.0% of the population.

There were 929 households of which 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.9% were married couples living together, 9.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.1% were non-families. 33.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 15% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.93.

The median age in the city was 41.5 years. 24.8% of residents were under the age of 18; 5.9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.1% were from 25 to 44; 24.4% were from 45 to 64; and 20.8% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.1% male and 51.9% female.

2000 census

As of the census of 2000, there were 2,045 people, 840 households, and 554 families residing in the city. The population density was 841.9 people per square mile (324.9/km²). There were 906 housing units at an average density of 373.0 per square mile (144.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 99.12% White (mostly Norwegian-American), 0.24% Native American, 0.10% Asian, 0.49% from other races, and 0.05% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.93% of the population.

There were 840 households out of which 31.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.4% were married couples living together, 8.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.0% were non-families. 30.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the city, the population was spread out with 25.0% under the age of 18, 6.4% from 18 to 24, 27.7% from 25 to 44, 19.0% from 45 to 64, and 21.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 85.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 81.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $32,340, and the median income for a family was $41,000. Males had a median income of $29,274 versus $21,429 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,839. About 4.9% of families and 7.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.6% of those under age 18 and 9.7% of those age 65 or over.

Velkomen to Westby
Westby city limits

Syttende Mai festival

Westby Norseman
The Westby Norseman

Westby's most popular event is the Syttende Mai festival, an annual three-day event held in mid-May. The festival stems from Westby's Norwegian roots, Syttende Mai being a Norwegian holiday ("Syttende Mai" translates to "Seventeenth of May") celebrating Norway's independence and the signing of the Norwegian Constitution.

The festival's main attractions are the cultural shops, where many Norwegian products are sold; the food stands; and the troll hunt. At the start of the weekend, a small troll, standing several inches tall, is hidden somewhere within the city limits. A clue is posted downtown on each of the three days until someone finds the troll. The prize for retrieving the troll is $50.

Westby has one of the largest ski jumps in the United States, where the Snowflake Ski Club hosts an annual ski jump event at the end of January and the beginning of February. The event includes a parade to introduce all of the participating countries, a competition for "Snowflake" royalty, and opportunities for local businesses to sell their wares. The event attracts competitors from all over the ski jumping world.

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