About the City of Mesa
Mesa (/ˈmɛsə/ mes-ə) is the third-largest city in Arizona, after Phoenix and Tucson. and the 38th-largest city in the US. it is located approximately 20 miles east of Phoenix, and is the largest city in Maricopa County. The city is home to 439,041 people as of 2010 according to the Census Bureau. Mesa is home to numerous higher education facilities including Polytechnic campus of Arizona State University. In addition Mesa serves as the host of several major league baseball teams’ spring training facilities most notably the Chicago Cubs and the Oakland Athletics.
The history of Mesa dates back to at least 2,000 years ago with the arrival of the Hohokam people. The Hohokam were credited with building the largest and most sophisticated canal systems in the prehistoric New World. They were so complex that by 1100 A.D. water was able to be delivered to an area of over 110,000 acres which led to the transformation of the dry Sonoran Desert into an agricultural oasis.
The early pioneer days saw the Arizona territory transformed even further. With the settlements established by Mormon pioneer Daniel Webster Jones, Charles Crismon, and Charles I. Robson the Arizona territory was settled and in 1878 Mesa was a registered town site. The first Mesa School building was built in 1879, and in 1883, with a population of about 300 people, Mesa was officially incorporated.
Mesa is home to over 2,280 acres of parkland within the city limits. Mesa’s largest park is Red Mountain Park with spans 1,146 acres. It includes a lake, playgrounds, a basketball court, and a cement volleyball court. Mesa’s cultural attractions include HoHoKam Park, which is the future Cactus League home of the Oakland Athletics. Sloan Park is the new Spring Training home of the Chicago Cubs; built in 2014 it is a tourist must-see.
Mesa also serves as a home to the Mesa Arts Center. Located in downtown Mesa, the Mesa Art Center is a unique, architecturally stunning, international award winning facility located in the heart of downtown Mesa. Arizona’s largest arts center is home to four theaters, five art galleries, and 14 art studios. Guests, patrons, and students come to Mesa Arts Center to enjoy the finest live entertainment and performances, world-class visual art exhibitions, and outstanding arts education classes. The facility is an architectural showpiece and a destination for visitors to the Phoenix area. The Mesa Arts Center mission is to inspire people through engaging arts experiences that are diverse, accessible, and relevant.