Ocala - A Welcoming Atmosphere
Every year thousands of new residents begin calling Ocala and Marion County home, keeping it among the three fastest growing areas in the nation. Ocala's welcoming atmosphere makes transitions easy. The variety and affordability of housing ensures that there are homes to suit every taste, lifestyle and budget.
Surrounded by scenic countryside, Ocala has the vitality and diversity of a much larger city. Named the county seat in 1845, it has a wonderful history, yet the ability to move ahead into the next century. Ocala's historic district is a neighborhood of charming tree-lined streets and exquisite Victorian and Tudor homes.
"In 2007, Ocala/Marion County was officially named the “Horse Capital of the World™,” a testament to the County’s unique involvement in all things equestrian and its record of producing some of the finest champions in the sport. With a beautiful, mild climate all year long and soil rich with limestone calcium for strong bones, Ocala/Marion County is home to more horses than anywhere else in the country." (Ocala/Marion County Visitors & Convention Bureau)
For those who long for the country life, Marion County offers many possibilities from newly built country communities to weathered farm houses, horse farms, and grand estates.
ARTS & CULTURE
In Ocala and Marion County, arts, culture and festivals are always in season. Throughout the year more than 250 civic clubs and organizations promote festivals celebrating the cultural variety of Ocala and Marion County. An active appreciation of fine arts has been an integral part of the cultural life of Ocala for years.
Since 1950, Ocala has had its own community theatre, the Ocala Civic Theatre, which is the second largest in the state. In addition, the Ocala Symphony Orchestra, established in 1975, is dedicated to serving Central Florida with the highest quality in musical experiences. The orchestra is composed of outstanding musicians from the community and the finest music schools throughout the region.
The Marion Cultural Alliance (MCA) is a non-profit membership organization devoted to increasing and supporting cultural activities in Marion County. MCA has donated over $1.5 million to the arts and other charitable organizations in Ocala/Marion County and established a Cultural Endowment fund of $900,000. MCA has supported local arts organizations with over $310,000 through its annual Cultural Grant Awards. In addition, MCA operates the Brick City Center for the Arts gallery and gift shop located one block off the historic Square in Downtown Ocala.