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Fairbanks is a Home Rule City in Fairbanks North Star Borough, Alaska. It is the largest city in the Interior region of Alaska, and second largest in the state. It is the principal city of the 'Fairbanks, Alaska Metropolitan Statistical Area' which encompasses all of Fairbanks Northstar Borough.

According to 2005 Census Bureau estimates, the population of the city is 31,324. The population of Fairbanks and vicinity is 82,840. Fairbanks is home to the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the oldest college in Alaska.

The Interior, home of Fairbanks and Denali National Park, has some of the most extreme weather in the world with rapid temperature swings, thunderstorms with hail and lightning and snow in the summer. Winters are very long, lasting from late September to mid-April.

The coldest temperature ever recorded in Fairbanks was -66 degrees F on January 14, 1934. The average January low is -19 degrees F and the average January high is -2 degrees F. Winter snowfall averages around 67.40 inches per year. During the winter months, if the temperature drops below -20 degrees F, ice fog can occur.

The summers are usually very warm, with temperatures often reaching into the 80s degrees F and sometimes reaching into the 90s degrees F. The average July low is 53 degrees F and the average July high is 72 degrees F. The highest temperature ever recorded in Fairbanks was 99 degrees F on July 28, 1919.

As the regional service and supply center for the Alaska Interior, Fairbanks offers a diverse economy, including city, borough, state, and federal government services; and transportation, communication, manufacturing, financial, and regional medical services.

Tourism and mining also comprise a significant part of the economy. Including Eielson Air Force Base and Fort Wainwright personnel, over one third of the employment is in government services.

The University of Alaska Fairbanks is also a major employer.

Approximately 325,000 tourists visit Fairbanks each summer. The Fort Knox hardrock gold mine produces 1,200 ounces daily with 360 permanent year-round employees. 126 city residents hold commercial fishing permits.


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