Marana is a town in Pima County, located northwest of Tucson, with a small portion in Pinal County. According to the 2010 census, the population of the town is 34,961. Marana was the fourth fastest-growing place among all cities and towns in Arizona of any size from 1990 to 2000 and keeps growing.
The town extends along Interstate 10 from the line between Pinal and Pima County to the Tucson city line, except the area around the non-affluent unincorporated community of Rillito. The town has a history of farming and ranching. The Tucson Mountains and the western half of Saguaro National Park are located to the south. Phoenix is approximately 90 minutes north via Interstate 10.
Marana was named for the Spanish word maraña (“thicket”) by 19th century railroad workers who had to clear a line through the area.
In 2007, Marana began hosting the PGA Tour’s WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship (now the WGC-Cadillac Match Play Championship). Held in late February, the event included the world’s top 64 professional golfers. Henrik Stenson won the inaugural event, and Tiger Woods won in 2008, defeating Stewart Cink. Geoff Ogilvy won the 2009 version by defeating Paul Casey. Ian Poulter won the 2010 event and Luke Donald took the 2011 title. The tournament remained in Marana through 2014.
Pinal Airpark (Evergreen International Aviation), where many commercial airlines send their airplanes for storage, and which was also well known in the 1970s and 1980s as an air base for the CIA is located just north of Marana in Pinal County. To this day, access to the Airpark is strictly monitored.
Marana Regional Airport was purchased by the town from Pima County in 1999. It does not serve commercial airlines. Residents can use the Tucson International Airport to fly commercial.
In 2017 Marana was ranked number 6 on the list of the most successful cities in Arizona. With a population of just more than 37,000 people, the median income in Marana is $74,817. The poverty level is 4.2 percent and the unemployment rate is 7.3 percent.