Eau Claire is a city located in Wisconsin. (Its name is pronounced as if it were "O'Clare".) As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 61,704. It is the county seat of Eau Claire County. It is also the home of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (UWEC). "Eau Claire" is the singularized form of the town's original French name, "Eaux Claires", meaning "Clear Waters". Because of the difficulty "out of towners" have correctly pronouncing the name of the city, a number of residents have suggested renaming the city "Clearwater". This recommendation has yet to make it to referendum.
The lumber industry drove Eau Claire's growth in the late 19th century.
There are several large parks in the city, notably Putnam Park, which follows the course of Putnam Creek and Little Niagara Creek east from the UWEC campus, and Carson Park, located on a peninsula in Half Moon Lake (see Geography). Carson Park is home to the Eau Claire Cavaliers, a minor-league baseball team, the Chippewa Valley Museum, and the Paul Bunyan Logging Camp, which celebrates the town's lumbering history. Another important park is Owen Park, along the Chippewa River, home to a large bandshell where open air concerts are held throughout the summer.
Eau Claire does not have a mayor, but rather a very active city council. It was ranked in 1996 as the safest city in America, it has since lost that title, although it remains in the top ten.
Eau Claire is approximately 145 km (90 miles) east of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota.
Web Sites and Links
City of Eau ClaireInformation about the services and activities of the city government, along with links to community sites and agencies.
Your Town - Eau ClaireLocal tools, links, sports and people in the area.