The Amazing 135 Years of Growth of Fruita Colorado
The town of Fruita has seen steady growth since it was established in the late 1800s, but over the last 20 years, the population has exploded.
What A Difference A Hundred Years Makes
Fruita was incorporated in 1884 and at the turn of the century had a population of just 126 residents. Within 10 years, the population was nearly 1,000, a growth of nearly 600%. By 1920, the population was nearly 1200 and it would remain between 1,000 and 2,000 for the next 60 years.
Like much of western Colorado, Fruita began to see substantial growth in the 1980s. From around 2800 in 1980, Fruita's population ballooned to over 4,000 people by 1990 and by 2000 had grown to more than 6,000. Over the next 10 years, Fruita's population nearly doubled to over 12,000 but has seen much slower growth over the past 10 years.
Fruita's Early Days
In the early days, Fruita was known for its fruit. Today it's better known for things like mountain biking, hiking and rafting, and festivals like Mike the Headless Chicken Days and Fruita Fall Festival.
If we go back to the really early days, we would have to say the first residents of Fruita were dinosaurs as we know many skeletal remains of the prehistoric beasts have been found in the area. Fruita's Dinosaur Journey Museum is a fascinating place.
In many ways, I think Fruita is a great small town. They have a good selection of dining options, a great downtown, some wonderful small-town events like the farmers market and the concerts in the park, and of course, the big festivals. It really is a perfect size but will it stay that way? Only time will tell.