Tempe Quick Facts
A Traveler's Guide to TempeTempe is a city that is located in the central/southern portion of the state of Arizona. It is a part of the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. It is surrounded by the cities of Phoenix, Chandler, Mesa, and Scottsdale. The city gets its name from Darrell Duppa, who suggested that the area around modern day Tempe reminded him of the Vale of Tempe, a butte near Mount Olympus in Greece.
The area was originally settled in 1865 when Fort McDowell was constructed on the Salt River. The area of Tempe was a ferry crossing over the river. In 1879 the city was incorporated and in 1885 the Arizona Legislature chose the city to be the home of the school that would eventually grow to become Arizona State University. This brought many jobs and new residents to the area. In 1911 the Roosevelt Dam was constructed which meant that the Tempe area was guaranteed to have enough water for further development. Today Tempe is primarily a university town and a suburb to the larger city of Phoenix next door. US Airways and Insight Enterprises, two Fortune 500 companies, are headquartered in Tempe today.
The largest employer in the city is Arizona State University. The ASU sports teams compete in over 20 sports in the NCAA Division 1 Pacific Ten conference. The Tostito's Feista Bowl is held in Tempe each year and thousands of people from across the country come and spend money in the city. Arizona Mills is one of the largest malls in the metropolitan area. Tempe also serves as the spring practice home for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
Tempe has an arid climate just like the cities around it. Summers are hot, with temperatures exceeding 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and winters are mild with temperatures rarely dipping below 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Rainfall is extremely rare in the area, but most of the rainfall happens in the months of January through March.
The warm climate of Tempe provides ample opportunity for locals and visitors alike to participate in activities such as hiking, rock climbing, horse back riding, swimming, and boating. The closest major airport is Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport which is located two miles from downtown Tempe.
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