Kennewick, Washington is located in the southeastern part of the state in Benton County. The City of Kennewick is the largest of the Tri-Cities, with an estimated population of around 74,000. Kennewick is located on the southwest bank of the Columbia River, south of the confluence of the Yakima and Columbia rivers. Close by is the Hanford nuclear site. Kennewick is serviced by the Tri-Cities Airport within the City of Pasco.
The City of Kennewick is the site of a major archaeological discovery, called Kennewick Man. The prehistoric remains were unearthed in 1996 on the banks of the Columbia River. The Caucasoid features on the 9,000-year-old remains of what must have been an indigenous man have caused great speculation.
"Kennewick" is a name which is believed to be a native word which means "grassy place." The area's mild winters have made it known as "winter paradise." Amongst the many previous names of Kennewick is "Tehe", from the sound of a native girl's laugh.
The city of Kennewick was connected to other Columbia River settlements by railroads and steamboats in the 1880s. During 1888, the Northern Pacific Railroad constructed a permanent railroad bridge between the City of Kennewick and Pasco, replacing the ferry as the chosen way of transportation for freight crossing the river. A cable ferry connected the west end of Kennewick and the Pasco side of the river up until 1931.
The Tri-City Americans of the Western Hockey League along with the Indoor Football League's Tri-Cities Fever play their home games at the Toyota Center. Each and every summer, the City of Kennewick hosts hydroplane races on the Columbia River during an event known as Water Follies. The Benton-Franklin County Fair is one more yearly summer event. The city hosts two triathlons each year: Titanium Man-International Distance and Plutonium Man-Half-Iron Distance. Kennewick's commercial district draws shoppers throughout southeastern Washington, mostly to the Columbia Center Mall.