30 miles S.E. of Fort Collins, 54 miles N. of Denver
Greeley is a good spot to see the "other Colorado," the flatlands to the east of the state's famed mountains, as well as to delve into the area's history at several museums. One of the few cities in the world that owes its existence to a newspaper, Greeley was founded in 1870 as a sort of prairie utopia by Nathan C. Meeker, a farm columnist for the New York Tribune. Meeker named the settlement -- first known as Union Colony -- in honor of his patron, Tribune publisher Horace Greeley. Through his widely read column, Meeker recruited more than 100 pioneers from all walks of life and purchased a tract on the Cache la Poudre from the Denver Pacific Railroad. Within a year, the colony's population was 1,000, and it has grown steadily ever since, to nearly 90,000 today.
Greeley's economy is supported in large part by agriculture, with about 75% of Weld County's 1.9 million acres devoted to farming or the raising of livestock. A combination of irrigated and dry-land farms produce grains, including oats, corn, and wheat, and root vegetables such as sugar beets, onions, potatoes, and carrots. The University of Northern Colorado (UNC), with about 11,000 students, offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Elevation is 4,658 feet.