Retire to Florida In Palm Harbor
Top 20 Retirement Cities in Florida
Palm Harbor has been ranked as a top retirement community in Florida by organizations like WalletPop, 55+, CNNMoney, and others.
The city is appealing, because Florida has no state income tax and Palm Harbor is not incorporated - therefore, the government levies few or no taxes of its own in Pinellas County other than by local referendum. This means little or no tax.
Palm Harbor sits approximately halfway down the western coast of the state on the Gulf of Mexico. Local restaurants serve not only American and regional Floridian cuisines, but also Tex-Mex with the influence of Florida and diverse cultures, as in FloriMex Cuisine.
Palm Harbor is north of Clearwater, St. Petersburg, and Tampa on the west coast of the state.
Active Community Attractions
Prior to the Civil War, people migrated southward to Florida to take advantage of citrus groves and mineral springs that gave rise to health resorts in a mild climate where the temperature is usual in the mid-60 degrees F all winter. Fishing was good in the Gulf of Mexico and farming was successful. The area was settled more extensively by individuals moving in roughly between 1860 and 1878.
Local unincorporated neighborhoods beside Palm Beach today include East Lake, Crystal Beach with its long-time Live Oak City Park, and Ozona; all of which combine to form the larger community. Palm Harbor is governed by the Pinellas County Commission and the three smaller neighborhoods have some form of community organization of club that acts as government. Some have their own online newsletters and meeting place as well.
In 1985, the Florida Legislature protected Palm Harbor officially form annexation by surrounding villages and towns and allowed a system of local voting to be effected for special taxes from time to time, by local referendum.
The Palm Harbor Community Services Agency is a non-profit with a Board of Directors that serves to govern local operations, programs, and public library and recreation facilities. The Palm Harbor Library is especially active, with a total of 150 active volunteers beyond their 24 staff persons. it is a cultural center and meeting place for the community that provides many educational and entertaining programs and events, including concerts and a lively book club.
The Palm Harbor Community Center adds additional entertainment and classes, so there is always something to do at the Library or the Center. In addition, green space is located in a dozen local recreational parks and outdoor sports are provided for adults, youth, and children. Hiking, biking, and fishing are still popular.
Countryside Mall is 15 miles south of town along Route 19 and for tennis and golf, Innisbrook Resort is in town.
Houses of Faith
For retirees to whom faith is a part of life, then a number of denominations are available in Palm Harbor:
- Baptist: Abundant Life Baptist, Berea Baptist, Bible Baptist, Curlew Baptist
- Other Mainline Churches: East Lake United Methodist, Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, New Life Church, New Purpose Community Church, Palm Harbor Community Church, Presbyterian Church of Palm Harbor, St. Alfred's Episcopal, St. Luke Catholic, SS Helenix Orthodox Church
- Jewish Temples: Temple Ahavat Shalom
- Other Houses: Christ Church, Crossroads Chapel,Grace Covenant Church, Jehovah's Witnesses Palm Harbor, LDS Church, Lutheran Church of the Palms, Unity Church of Palm Harbor and Word of Faith.
- Local Sports include the Palm Harbor Nighthawks under US Soccer, which is working to bring the World Cup to the US in 2018 or 2022. Tampa is a candidate city.
Pinellas County offers an extensive system of buses, trolleys, loop routes, shuttles, and other options. Some routes extend into other, nearby counties. (www.psta.net) Senior Citizen prices are much reduced.
Old Palm Harbor Main Street
The historic region of Palm Harbor's downtown district is preserved and developed by the Old Palm Harbor Main Street organization. This is a non-profit corporation working in partnership with county government since 1999 to provide business and communty services as well as such events as
- First Fridays celebrations
- Palm Harbor Days founders' festival
- Christmas & Holiday Parades
- Palm Harbor Parrot Head Party
- Palm Harbor Bike Fest and Car Show
- Citrus Festival
- Craft Fairs
Further, improvements to infrastructure were completed in 2006 and ongoing development is likely.
Education and Training
- Eckerd College
Eckerd College, the only private national liberal arts college in Florida, is located on a waterfront setting in St. Petersburg.
- Palm Harbor Library
- Palm Harbor University High School
is a high-performing, nationally recognized school that has developed a curriculum to meet the needs of a diverse student population. It offers an innovative traditional program coupled with two dynamic magnets, the International Baccalaureate Progra
- Try the local Central Florida Institute Medical and Dental Training Schools at http://www.cfi.edu -- Explore a new career at the Tampa and Orlando Medical and Dental Training Schools. Study and become accredited training as a Medical Assistant, Dental Assistant, Cardiovascular Technician, Sonographer, and others with these programs.
Employment and Economy
Most Frequently Listed Job Openings
High demand jobs have increased to over 39,100 listed vacancies in May 2018. The highest demand openings listed below are within 30 miles of the downtown district of Palm Harbor.
Hot Jobs in the Palm Harbor Metro Area
- Registered Nurses (RNs)
- Mechanics - Truck and Auto
- Truck Drivers with CDL
- Certified Nurses' Assistants (CNAs)
- Retail Salespeople
- Business Analysts
- Physical Therapists and Occupational Therapists
- Software Applications Engineers
- Pharmacy Technicians
- Managers and Assitant Managers
- Landscapers and Helpers
- Restaurant General Managers, Casual Dining and Fast Food Team Members and Crew
Other High Demand Jobs
- Financial Advisors, Sales Managers, Speech Therapists, and Customer Service Reps.
Top Hiring Companies
- Bay Care Health System: See section below.
- CVS Health
- Various Health & Medical Recruiters
- Florida Hospital Tampa
- Tampa General Hospital
- Moffitt Cancer Center
- University Community Hospital in Tampa
- University of South Florida
- St. Joseph's Baptist Hospital
- All Children's Hospital
Bay Care Health System
This complex was named to the Top 100 Best Places to Work In Florida during the summer of 2009 and has remained near the top of the list.
This employer happens to be the largest community-based healthcare system in Florida West Coast Region, or Tampa Bay Area.
The system of hospitals and clinics serves Clearwater, Tampa, St. Petersburg, Palm Harbor and surrounding communities across the Tampa Bay market area. The hospitals that are government by this system include
- Mease Countryside
- Mease Dunedin
- Mease Morton Plant
- Mease Morton Plant North Bay
- St. Anthony’s
- St. Joseph’s
- St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital
- St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital
- St. Joseph’s Hospital North - new facility for 2010 that will add new jobs to the area.
- South Florida Baptist Hospital
Local Hospitals and Clinics
- Bay Tree Rehab and Nursing; and Bay Area Medical Center (see section above)
- Countryside Health Care Center. 3825 Countryside Blvd. N. Palm Harbor, FL 34684
- HCA West Florida: This is an amazing network of 16 hospitals with 21 emergency rooms, 14 surgery centers, and 21 graduate medical education training programs in West Florida. Palm Harbor opened a 24/7/365 ER in 2016.
- Manor Care of Palm Harbor
- North Pinellas Childrens’ Hospital
Retirement Living in Palm Harbor
- Modular, Manufactured, and Mobile Homes in Palm Harbor: Palm Harbor Homes is the national leader in quality customizable modular homes, manufactured homes and mobile homes. Palm Harbor Homes provides a huge selection of modular homes, manufactured homes and mobile homes.
- Palm Harbor Retirement Complexes
Factory Tour: Manufactured Homes
© 2010 Patty Inglish MS