In the 1900's Kalamazoo was world famous for 3 things which lead to these nicknames.

Even though, to this day, there are people that think Kalamazoo is a mythical city like Atlantis.  This city, incorporated in 1884, has a rich history and was known around the planet back in the day.

You can find some interesting historical facts about Kalamazoo, Michigan at  That's where I found these three Kzoo nicknames.

#1 The Celery City.  The city of Kalamazoo was once surrounded by muck fields where celery was the town's number 1 crop.  In fact, Kalamazoo County was considered the Celery Capital of the World in the early 1900's.

#2. The Paper City.  Kalamazoo had many paper and cardboard manufacturers in the early 1900's.  In fact, Parchment, also in Kalamazoo county was named after a parchment paper mill.

#3. The Mall City.  Kalamazoo earned this nickname in the mid-1900's according to,

after construction of the first outdoor pedestrian shopping mall in the United States in 1959.



If you do a Google search on Kalamazoo nicknames you'll websites that say things like, "the locals call it 'the zoo."  Um no, nobody that lives here has ever done that.  Maybe Kzoo from time to time out of sheer laziness, but not 'the zoo.'

Do you know of a Kalamazoo nickname we missed?  If so, what is it and where did it come from?  Let us know in the comments.



WKFR logo
Enter your number to get our free mobile app

MORE TO EXPLORE: Michigan's Grand Canyon

More From WKFR