Provo /ˈproʊvoʊ/ is the third-largest city in the U.S. state of Utah, located about 43 miles (69 km) south of Salt Lake City along the Wasatch Front. Provo is the county seat of Utah County and is the largest city in Utah County. It lies between the cities of Orem to the north and Springville to the south. With a population at the 2010 census of 112,488, Provo is the principal city in the Provo-Orem metropolitan area, which had a population of 526,810 residents at the 2010 census. It is the third-largest metro area in the state behind Salt Lake City and Ogden-Clearfield.
Father Silvestre Velez de Escalante, a Spanish Franciscan missionary-explorer, is considered the first European explorer to have visited the area, in 1776. Escalante chronicled this first European exploration across the Great Basin desert. Provo was originally called Fort Utah when it was settled in 1849 by 33 Mormon families from Salt Lake City, but was renamed Provo in 1850 for Étienne Provost, an early French-Canadian trapper who arrived in the region in 1825. The Battle of Fort Utah was fought at Provo in 1850.
Provo lies in the Utah Valley at an elevation of 4,549 feet (1,387 m). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 44.2 square miles (114.4 km sq), of which 41.7 square miles (107.9 km sq) is land and 2.5 square miles (6.5 km sq), or 5.66%, is water.
Covey Center for the Arts
The Covey Center for the Arts, a performing arts center, is located on 425 West Center Street. It features plays, ballets, art showcases, and musical performances throughout the year. The size of the building is 42,000 total square feet. The main performance hall seats 670 people. There are three dance studios furnished with piano, ballet bars, and mirrors. Another theater is the Brinton Black Box Theater that seats 60 for smaller more intimate events. There are also two art galleries: 1,620 square-foot Secured Gallery and the Eccles Gallery in the lower lobby.
Interstate 15 runs along the west edge of Provo, connecting it with the rest of the Wasatch Front and much of Utah. US-89 runs northwest to southeast through the city as State Street, while US-189 connects US-89 with I-15, BYU, and Orem to the north. At the north edge of the city, US-189 heads northeast into Provo Canyon, where it connects with Heber.
Every July, Provo hosts America's Freedom Festival at Provo which includes the Stadium of Fire at BYU. It is held in LaVell Edwards Stadium, home to Brigham Young University's NCAA football team. The Independence Day festivities are quite popular among local residents and have featured such notable figures as Bob Hope, David Hasselhoff, Reba McEntire, Mandy Moore, Huey Lewis and the News, Toby Keith, Sean Hannity, Fred Willard, and Taylor Hicks.
In 2008 the Blue Man Group, Glenn Beck, and Miley Cyrus performed. The Jonas Brothers and Glenn Beck appeared in 2009. Carrie Underwood performed in 2010 and Brad Paisley and David Archuleta performed in 2011. In 2012, The Beach Boys and Scott McCreery performed and in 2013, Kelly Clarkson, Carly Rae Jepsen and Cirque Du Soleil performed.