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Yakima is a city in central Washington and the county seat of Yakima County, USA. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 71,845 and a metropolitan population of 229,094. Yakima is situated in the Yakima Valley, which is noted for being one of the best apple-producing areas in the world, as well as a prime location for the production of hops. The name originates from the Yakama Nation. The Yakama Indian Reservation is located to the south and southeast of the city of Yakima.
Approaching the city from the west on Interstate 82, there is a sign that reads "Welcome to Yakima: The Palm Springs of Washington". While this is not an official city slogan and the sign is privately owned, the sign has been known to cause both laughter and embarrassment among area residents, as Palm Springs evokes images of beautiful, up-scale environs - most would not describe Yakima this way. The name is actually a reference to Yakima's climate, one of the hottest regions of Washington state. In the 1950s the city marketed itself with highway signs and promotional materials as "The Fruit Bowl of the Nation," a slogan that more accurately describes this very diverse agricultural center that produces some of nearly all non-citrus fruits grown in North America.
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