Orting, Washington

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City of Orting
Location of Orting, Washington
Location of Orting, Washington
Coordinates: 47°5′46″N 122°12′19″W / 47.09611°N 122.20528°W / 47.09611; -122.20528Coordinates: 47°5′46″N 122°12′19″W / 47.09611°N 122.20528°W / 47.09611; -122.20528
CountryUnited States
 • TypeMayor/Council (Strong Mayor)[1]
 • MayorJoshua Penner[1]
 • Total2.76 sq mi (7.16 km2)
 • Land2.71 sq mi (7.01 km2)
 • Water0.06 sq mi (0.15 km2)
190 ft (58 m)
 • Total6,746
 • Estimate 
 • Density2,950.11/sq mi (1,138.94/km2)
Time zoneUTC-8 (Pacific (PST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s)360/564
FIPS code53-52005
GNIS feature ID1512539[5]

Orting is a city in Pierce County, Washington, United States. The population as of the 2010 census is 7,983 according to the City of Orting.


Orting is a city located approximately 30 miles (48 km) from Mount Rainier. The first-ever recorded claims for the land in Orting were made in 1854 by William Henry Whitesell (also the first postmaster), Thomas Headley, Daniel Lane, and Daniel Varner. These four people all have streets in the city named after them and a monument in the Orting City Park commemorating them. The city was officially incorporated on April 22, 1889. Early growth came as the area developed fields for production and logging industries. Later, Christmas tree and bulb farms became important to the local economy. Orting was also a supply town for the coal mining towns of Wilkeson and Carbonado. The first railroad in the city was built in 1877 by the Northern Pacific Railway and was called "Whitesell's Crossing" because the it ran right through the Whitesell property. The population rose quickly after this railroad was built as it made transportation in and out of the city much easier. What remains of the railroad is now the Meeker Southern Railroad, which runs between Puyallup and McMillin.

On November 7, 2006, there was a flash flood in Orting.[6] At around 8:00 AM on November 7, 2006, the neighborhood Village Green in Orting flooded. It only took about 2 hours for the water to rise as high as half the height of some houses. This flood was part of the major Pineapple Express flooding, which caused damage in many parts of Western Washington. The cause of the Orting Flood has been the subject of some debate. Some claim the sewers could not handle the 2 days of continuous rain leading up to the flood while others claim that the levees on the Puyallup River broke. But because of the Pineapple Express, the freezing and snow levels on Mount Rainier rose too fast, and the snow started to melt. The Orting School District closed all of Orting's schools for 2 days due to the massive clean-up that was needed. Both the Carbon River and the Puyallup River were responsible for this flooding due to the city of Orting being surrounded by these two rivers.


Orting is located at 47°5′46″N 122°12′19″W / 47.09611°N 122.20528°W / 47.09611; -122.20528 (47.096071, -122.205401).[7]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.80 square miles (7.25 km2), of which, 2.73 square miles (7.07 km2) is land and 0.07 square miles (0.18 km2) is water.[8]


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 20188,395[4]24.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]
2018 Estimate[10]

2010 census[edit]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 6,746 people, 2,184 households, and 1,688 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,471.1 inhabitants per square mile (954.1/km2). There were 2,361 housing units at an average density of 864.8 per square mile (333.9/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 87.9% White, 1.5% African American, 1.4% Native American, 1.3% Asian, 0.5% Pacific Islander, 2.4% from other races, and 5.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.2% of the population.

There were 2,184 households of which 48.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.5% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 22.7% were non-families. 16.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.01 and the average family size was 3.34.

The median age in the city was 32.7 years. 30.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 31.8% were from 25 to 44; 19.5% were from 45 to 64; and 10.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 50.7% male and 49.3% female.

2000 census[edit]

The median income for a household in the city was $53,464, and the median income for a family was $55,335. Males had a median income of $41,486 versus $26,438 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,951. About 4.2% of families and 6.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.2% of those under the age of 18 and 15.8% of those 65 and older.

Salmon fishing[edit]

Orting is located between the Carbon and Puyallup Rivers. The Voights Creek Hatchery is located just outside Orting and plays a large part in the healthy runs of salmon that bring fishermen from far and wide to enjoy the challenge of landing a big salmon.

Washington Soldiers Home[edit]

Orting is the site of the Washington Soldiers Home, which provides nursing care, medical care, and supportive services for veterans and eligible family members.[11] The Soldiers Home is located on the Orting Kapowsin Highway southwest of town. Nearby, the Soldiers Home Cemetery contains 2,265 graves, including four Medal of Honor recipients from the Civil War.[12]

City parks and murals[edit]

Orting is known for its beautiful parks filled with huge shade trees making places for picnics and relaxing right in the center of the historic downtown area. Visitors will enjoy the Orting Valley Farmer's Market in the North Park, Fridays from 3:00PM-7:00PM, during the summer months.[13] A walking tour map is available at the library on the corner of Train and Washington. The map shows the route to the historic murals scattered on buildings throughout the town. Throughout town there are views of Mt. Rainier in the distance.

Daffodil Parade[edit]

Every year, Orting is the fourth and final stop in the annual Daffodil Festival Parade. The parade has gone through downtown Orting since 1934. It draws over 10,000 people in early April to the festivities in the downtown Orting Parks and the parade viewing in late afternoon. The parade also goes through the cities of Tacoma, Puyallup, and Sumner. Orting school band also plays and the Daffodil Queen makes an appearance.

Mount Rainier[edit]

Mount Rainier as seen from the High Cedars Golf Course in Orting, bordering the Puyallup River

The town sits in a fertile valley between two major rivers, the Carbon and Puyallup Rivers, and it is built entirely on several layers of lahar deposits. Based on past lahar flow and the structure of Mount Rainier, Orting has been designated the most at-risk town in the event of lahar activity from the mountain. Scientists predict that lahars could reach Orting in as little as 30 minutes from origin. Authorities have installed a system of lahar sirens throughout the area, activated by sensors on Mt. Rainier. The local schools regularly stage lahar evacuation drills, and residents have been informed of lahar escape routes. Local citizens are progressing toward designing the Bridge for Kids, a walking bridge across the Carbon River that could be used for recreation and rapid evacuation up the hill toward Cascadia, Washington.[14]

Public safety[edit]

Orting Police handles law enforcement within the city limits and has an authorized staff of eleven fully commissioned officers and one full-time civilian. Despite population rates having doubled since the early 2000s, the City of Orting has maintained police staffing levels with little to no change. The Orting Police Department is located in the Public Safety Building at 401 Washington Ave SE. The Chief of Police is Chris Gard. He replaced William Drake, who held the position from February 2007 to March 2018. In November of 2016 the city of Orting paid $250,000 to former Orting police officer Gerry Pickens to settle a racial discrimation lawsuit. Pickens was the first black officer in the city's history and was fired just days before his probationary period was to end. Officer Pickens' personal vehicle was spray painted with a racial slur and a threat to not sue the police chief. Template:Https://amp.thenewstribune.com/news/politics-government/article113917393.html

Orting Valley Fire & Rescue handles all fire and medical aid service needs within the city and the surrounding unincorporated area. Station 40 (located at 401 Washington Ave SE) is staffed 24 hours a day. The city is also served by two other stations, including Station 42 (located on Patterson Rd) and Station 43 (located on 150th Ave E, just off Orting-Kapowsin Highway E on Cemetery Hill).


Education in the city of Orting is provided by the Orting School District. As of 2019, there are four schools in operation.

  • Orting Primary School (grades Pre-K-3)
  • Ptarmigan Ridge Elementary School (grades K-5)
  • Orting Middle School (grades 6–8)
  • Orting High School (grades 9–12)


The primary way of reaching the city is by car via Washington State Route 162. The closest Sounder Commuter Rail station is in Sumner, WA.

Foothills Trail[edit]

The Foothills Trail is a paved trail built on an old railroad bed. It runs through Orting to South Prairie in one direction and to Sumner in the other. Its primary function is recreation; however, it is also used by many bicycle commuters. The trail allows walking, bicycling, horseback riding, skating, skateboarding, and scooter traffic. It is reserved for non-motorized vehicles only.

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ a b "City of Orting - City of Orting".
  2. ^ "2017 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 21, 2019.
  5. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  6. ^ Glenn, Stacia. "Threshold raised for warning of minor flooding on Puyallup River near Orting - City of Orting". cityoforting.org. City of Orting. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
  7. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  8. ^ "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  9. ^ United States Census Bureau. "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved July 25, 2013.
  10. ^ "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
  11. ^ "Washington Soldiers Home Orting | WDVA". www.dva.wa.gov. Retrieved 2019-12-02.
  12. ^ "Washington Soldiers Home Cemetery, Orting" (PDF). Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs. Retrieved December 1, 2019.
  13. ^ "Orting Valley Farmers Market - Facebook".
  14. ^ "Bridge for Kids - Orting, WA". www.bridge4kids.org. Retrieved 2019-12-02.
  15. ^ "Notable People - Orting - LocalWiki". localwiki.org. Retrieved 2017-01-05.
  16. ^ "Athletics at the 1968 Ciudad de México Summer Games: Men's Pole Vault Qualifying Round | Olympics at Sports-Reference.com". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved 2017-01-05.

External links[edit]