OKEECHOBEE COUNTY

County Offices
304 NW Second Street
Okeechobee 863-763-6441
www.co.okeechobee.fl.us

Chamber of Commerce
55 South Parrot Ave
Okeechobee 863-467-6246
https://www.okeechobeebusiness.com/

The inland region of Okeechobee County enjoys a water-rich environment with its southern boundary on beautiful Lake Okeechobee. Forming the western boundary of the Treasure Coast region, this rural county was historically known for its cattle ranches and evolved through the decades into a center of diverse agribusiness interests. This picturesque region is still home to many of Florida’s traditional cattle-ranching families who now concentrate on the production of feeder calves. The rapid urbanization of South Florida’s coastal region moved the dairy industry into Okeechobee County, where it positively impacts the local economy. Okeechobee dairies rank among the largest in the United States.

The citrus industry has also played a vital role in Okeechobee County’s agribusiness community for many years. Today, the land being moved into citrus production is on the upswing in response to severe freezes that occurred in Central Florida in the 1980s. Nearly 12,500 acres of citrus groves dot the landscape, adding scenic beauty as well as revenue to the region. Citrus production is only one of several businesses that are replacing ranching and supplementing dairy production in Okeechobee County. Others include vegetable and sod farming, ornamentals, and even exotic animal and alligator farming.

Services
Public schools in Okeechobee County provide a full range of programs and opportunities for extra-curricular activities as well as the benefit of favorable student-teacher ratios and smaller classrooms. Dixon Hendry Center offers a wide range of vocational and career programs, while institutions throughout the Treasure Coast offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs and continuing education. Indian River Community College is available for those who want to explore two-year certification or degree programs. Students of all ages can launch a college-track program affordably at IRCC, where students consistently earn top passing rates in the state on the college-level academic skills test. The college also provides customized training for the county, local businesses, and private industry. Florida Atlantic University in Port St. Lucie provides a rapidly growing Treasure Coast campus.

Outstanding healthcare services are available to Okeechobee County residents at Raulerson Hospital, located on the banks of scenic Lake Okeechobee. This 101-bed. acute-care hospital provides a full range of medical and surgical services for both inpatient and outpatient procedures. Specialty services available at Raulerson Hospital include cardiopulmonary diseases, diabetes education, pain management, sleep disorders, physical rehabilitation, total joint replacement programs, and gastric bypass surgery. Okeechobee Health Care combines with a variety of other facilities and resources throughout the Treasure Coast to meet every need, including nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Walk-in medical clinics, wellness centers, diagnostic centers, home health companies, outpatient surgery centers, and birthing centers are also available. Other regional centers include an Alzheimer’s facility, open-heart surgery center, and cancer treatment centers.

Lifestyle
Anglers from around the world know Okeechobee as the “Speckled Perch Capital,” a paradise for fishing, hunting, and boating. Other exceptional recreational opportunities include camping, biking, hiking, rodeos, picnicking, nature study, and water sports. Rich traditions and close-knit communities have produced an abundance of popular celebrations and festivals, from arts and crafts fairs to the Lighted Christmas Parade, famous fishing tournaments and rodeos, and the Speckled Perch Festival. The Okee-Tantie Marina and County Recreation Area is the scene for a number of special events and recreational activities, offering access to the Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail. The latter is a 110-mile pathway that runs along the 35-foot-high Herbert Hoover Dike. Other public boat ramps are available throughout the county at Taylor Creek, Nubbin Slough, and Hendry Creek.

Residents and visitors alike can step off the beaten path and savor the unspoiled beauty that meets the eye around every corner of Okeechobee County. Native wildlife and vegetation flourish in this naturally subtropical environment, a favored destination for nature lovers and birdwatchers who are always hoping to catch a glimpse of rare and endangered species. Nestled against the northern shore of the nation’s second-largest freshwater lake, this panoramic region preserves the unique lifestyle of the early Florida frontier. A community rich in historical and cultural sites like Okeechobee Battlefield and the Veterans Memorial in downtown Flagler Park, the area features access to the attractions waiting in the welcoming Brighton Seminole Indian Reservation. Kissimmee Prairie State Preserve adds another 75 square miles of natural habitat and wildlife to the region’s rich resources. Enjoy the country atmosphere of a truly unique corner of Florida in the breathtakingly beautiful setting of Okeechobee County.

 

Okeechobee
Municipal Offices
863-763-3372
www.cityofokeechobee.com

The heart of the county is also the only incorporated community, serving as the seat of government and the hub of commercial activity. Residents of the area look to Okeechobee for such advantages as a public library that also offers videos and Internet access. The Okeechobee County Sports Complex provides a swimming pool, tennis courts, batting cages, baseball field, basketball court, soccer field, and wooden-jungle playground. Historical sites and attractions include the Peter Raulerson Home, the Okeechobee Historical Society Museum, the historic Amtrak passenger station building, the Old Jailhouse, and the Veterans War Memorial in Flagler Park. The latter provides a community picnic area and hosts annual events from the Labor Day Festival to the Speckled Perch Festival. Okeechobee County Airport accommodates most private and many commercial aircraft, once serving as a U.S. Air Force Base. Another popular attraction in this area is a wildlife rehabilitation center where visitors can observe native wildlife free of charge.

 

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