Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Overview: Nestled in northwestern Arkansas' beautiful Ozark Mountains, easygoing Fayetteville is rural, friendly and home to the University of Arkansas (UA). It has a Southern collegiate vibe.
The University (25,000 students) is at the center of Fayetteville life, and Razorback athletics bring people in from around the region. Fayetteville also enjoys a relatively low unemployment rate, thanks not only to UA but to various Walmart corporate partners that are based here. The city has landed on numerous "best places to live" lists and has several distinct districts, including the charming Fayetteville Historic Square (the original center of town), College Avenue (lots of shops and restaurants) and Dickson Street (entertainment venues and eateries). The gorgeous Crystal Bridges Museum houses five centuries of American art, and the Botanic Garden has nine separate gardens.
Outdoor recreational opportunities abound at nearby lakes, trails and rivers that are perfect for hiking, kayaking, and camping. Festivals and events include the Block Street Block Party, Le Chocolate Feast and the Roots Festival. The downtown farmers' market is one of the best in the nation. UA's Department of Fine Arts presents theater and music events and has an Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) for people age 50 or better.
Population: 82,000 (city proper)
Percentage of Population Age 45 or Better: 25%
Cost of Living: 6% below the national average.
Median Home Price: $225,000
Climate: Fayetteville has a humid, four-season climate. Summer temperatures are in the 80s and 90s. Winters are mild, with temperatures in the 30s, 40s and 50s. On average, the area receives 45 inches of rain and 9 inches of snow per year.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? Yes
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? Yes
Public Transit: Yes, provided by Ozark Regional Transit
Crime Rate: Above the national average
Public Library: Yes
Political Leanings: Conservative
Is Arkansas Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes
Cons: The tornado risk is 175% greater than the national average. The poverty rate is above the national average, but this is attributed to the large student population.
Notes: Fayetteville has grown by 14% within the last decade.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Maybe. The higher than average crime rate is a concern.
On June 15, 1836, Arkansas became the 25th state to enter the Union. It was the 9th to secede from the Union and enter the Confederacy on May 6, 1861. Its name comes from a French misinterpretation of the Sioux word for "downstream place" - acansa.
Officially known the Natural State, Arkansas has an abundance of mineral, gas, and petroleum resources. After mining, agriculture ranks high in the state's economy. With the exception of citrus fruits, Arkansans grow a wide variety of crops. Broilers, rice, soybeans, cattle, and cotton are some of their best selling products.
Arkansas contains mountains, caves, lakes, and 9,700 miles of streams and rivers. The state is also home to six national parks, ten scenic byways, and 50 state parks. Although late summers can be hot and humid, Arkansas has mild climate with four distinct seasons.
Arkansan Hattie Caraway became the first woman to be elected to the U.S. Senate in 1932. Other famous natives include Johnny Cash, Iris DeMent, and Billy Bob Thornton.
Population - 2,988,248
Persons 65 years old and over - 14%
High school graduates, persons age 25+ - 84%
Bachelor's degree or higher, persons age 25+ - 21%
Persons of Hispanic or Latino origin - 7%
White persons, not Hispanic - 72%
Median household income - $41,330
Median home value - $111,400
Social Security taxed? No
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
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