Wellington is a Statutory Town in Larimer County, Colorado, United States. The population was 6,289 at the 2010 census. Founded in 1902, incorporated in 1905, and named for C. L. Wellington (an employee of the Colorado and Southern Railroad). U.S. Supreme Court Justice Byron White lived in Wellington as a child. He made a point of returning to Wellington on an annual basis for his high school reunions up until 1999 when his physical health worsened significantly.
In the early 20th century, especially during the years of prohibition, Wellington doubled as a place to drink and a service town for drivers commuting from Cheyenne to Fort Collins and vice versa. The town, more or less, sustained a population of 500 throughout the century which proceeded to build homes, restaurants, churches, and various other elements of small town life. Though population remained steady throughout the 20th century, Wellington experienced moderate growth in the 1990s and 2000s, rendering it a sort of bedroom community for the city of Fort Collins, which lies 10 miles to the South.
The town hosts an annual Fourth of July celebration which usually comprises a pancake breakfast, a parade, a subsequent car show, live music in the park, and fireworks at dusk. Some residents enjoy biking around the vast spaces north of the town; at night, avid stargazers bring their telescopes to marvel at the universe. The town’s welcome signs call Wellington “a great place to grow.” Recently, Wellington held a competition to determine Wellington’s ‘brand’. Wellington’s new brand was determined to be “Colorado’s Northern Gateway”, signifying that Wellington is the last major town headed north along I-25 towards Wyoming, and the first headed south towards Fort Collins.