Welcome to


The culturally diverse city of Wapato is the first stop on the highway outside of Yakima and Union Gap.

About the Community

The town of 5,000 residents is known for its many farms, wineries and produce stands, so plan on making a few stops as you go.

The name Wapato is of Yakama Indian origin — Wa-pa-too — an edible root valued by native Yakamas and settlers alike. Settlers have been in the area since as early as 1885.

In 1903, the Postal Service changed the name of the town from Simcoe to Wapato, because Simcoe was too much like nearby Fort Simcoe. It was incorporated as a town in 1908.

As one of the most diverse multicultural towns in Washington, Wapato offers two fun tourist events — the Harvest Festival on Labor Day weekend and the Tamale Festival in October.

The Harvest Festival offers various activities, a parade, food, carnival rides and entertainment for the whole family. It’s the biggest fundraiser of the year for the city’s swimming pool, wrestling club, baseball league, children’s theater and high school scholarships.

The Tamale Festival has supported the town’s multicultural community with people of Japanese, Mexican, Filipino, Italian, German and French ancestry as well as Yakama Nation residents. Tourists are invited to participate in a tasty tamale cook-off competition and buy tamales by the dozen during the event. You can also sample foods showing Wapato’s ethnic diversity, including tacos, Indian fry bread, barbecue sandwiches and pies of various varieties, and of course, lots of tamales.

For more information, visit



416 S 3rd Street
Yakima, WA 98901

Call Us

(509) 457-4886

Email Us

general: dflink@yvpub.com
sales: sales@yvpub.com

Yakima Valley Publishing also manages the Yakima Business Times.

Follow us for local business news!