Monday, March 10, 2008

Retire to Fort Smith, Arkansas

Welcome to Fort Smith, Arkansas -- future home of the U.S. Marshals Museum! Nestled in the heart of the Arkansas Ozark Mountains, this famous Old West Town is an exciting travel destination. Fort Smith, Arkansas, uniquely combines the history of the wild and wooly "Old West" with the gentle charm of the antebellum "Old South".

Population: Fort Smith is is the second-largest city in the state of Arkansas. With an estimated population of 83,461 in 2006.

Weather: Fort Smith enjoys a temperate climate with generally mild winters and hot, humid summers. Winter daytime highs average near 50 degrees while summer highs often top 90 degrees.

Transportation: Fort Smith is a major transportation hub for the surrounding region. It sits at the crossroads of two major interstate highways, is surrounded on three sides by the Arkansas River and is the home of a regional airport. Fort Smith is served by the Fort Smith Regional Airport.

Universities and Colleges: The city has one major university that is part of the University of Arkansas System. The University of Arkansas at Fort Smith.

Things To See and Do: Fort Smith has a thriving arts community, with a number of venues to support performances. The Fort Smith Convention Center, constructed in 2001, brings national tours of many popular bands to downtown, and the Arkansas Best Corporation Performing Arts Center provides an excellent venue for orchestras and plays.
Old Fort Days Rodeo, Fort Smith's annual Old Fort Days Rodeo and Barrel-Racing Futurity offers nearly ten days of Wild West activities. It has been held every May since the mid-1930's and is now rated as one of the top all around rodeos in the country.
Fort Smith Riverfront Blues Fest, since it began in 1991, the Riverfront Blues Festival has become one of the biggest, hottest and jazziest annual June events in western Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma, attracting jazz aficionados from a wide area of the blues-rich south, and "name" blues artists and performers from all over. The two-day event makes for a delightful music-filled weekend in Fort Smith, hearing blues, blues, blues on the banks of the Arkansas River.

Health Care: Hospitals in Fort Smith include:
St. Edward Mercy Medical Center
Sparks Regional Medical Center

Housing Costs: Estimated median house/condo value in 2005: $94,600 (it was $74,200 in 2000)

Retirement Communities: Willow Brook Retirement Community;

Hope's Creek Retirement; Lexington Retirement Propeties