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America's Healthiest And Friendliest Retirement Town

Updated on May 2, 2016
Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Ms. Inglish has 30 years of successful experience in medicine, psychology, STEM courses, and aerospace education (CAP).

A flock of White Ibis near The Villages.
A flock of White Ibis near The Villages. | Source

New Healthcare System

The Villages has introduced a community-wide healthcare system. Its Health Learning Center provides health and wellness classes for patients to attend throughout the year as well. Visit the community health center at 1040 Lake Sumter Landing; The Villages, Florida 32162 or call 352-753-6200.

New Health Center

A marker1040 Lake Sumter Landing; The Villages, Florida -
1040 Lake Sumter Landing, The Villages, FL 32162, USA
get directions

The Villages, Where Life in Central Florida is Good

Hubber dusanotes asked me about looking at The Villages in Florida as a subject for city review and job openings, future possibilities, and trends. I'd like to do that and include travel and tourism adventures to be had in the region, an some unique aspects of the town that are favorable to relocation, retirement, and family living.

The Villages was named in 2008 as the fastest growing micropolitan market area (a small town) in the USA. from conversations and emails with a few people who live there, people love the town.

The Villages is an unincorporated community near Ocala, Florida between I-75 to the west and the large Ocala National Forest to the east. It is a well placed suburb, in my opinion, situated just 20 miles from Ocala and 45 miles from Orlando to the southeast. It is popular with retirees and northern dwellers that like to spend six months each year in the warmer climate of Orlando.

Central Florida Has Many Attractions

show route and directions
A markerOcala, Florida -
Ocala, FL, USA
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B markerThe Villages -
The Villages, FL, USA
get directions

C markerOrlando, Florida -
Orlando, FL, USA
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18th green at Tierra Del Sol course in The Villages.
18th green at Tierra Del Sol course in The Villages. | Source

Efficient Job Search and Employment Listings

The most frequently listed job openings in The Villages and within a 25-mile radius of the town center have been gathered by two premiere job search and trending engines, and

Job seekers can access a real time RSS link at both sites that offers current jobs listings for any city, town, or unincorporated place in America. Both organizations have divisions appropriate to Canada, the UK, Australia, and many other international locations on all continents in the world.

These two organizations gather updated information in an ongoing fashion from online recruiters, job search engines, company websites, and other Internet venues, along with data from governmental departments that specialize in employment trends, unemployment rates, industry and employment projections and other relevant material. Wherever a job is listed on the Internet in America, these two job engines will crawl that site and pick it up.

The Blacklist's Megan Boone

  • The actress Megan Boone grew up in The Villages, where her parents moved to be near the grandparents. Her grandfather is H. Gary Morse, The Villages' Developer, and her mother is Jennifer Parr, the current Director of Sales at The Villages. Ms. Boone recently starred on televisions popular The Blacklist as FBI profiler Elizabeth Keen with James Spader as the infamous Raymond Reddington from 2013 - 2016.

Close-Up of The Villages

A markerThe Villages -
The Villages, FL, USA
get directions

Neighborhood Social Clubs

Each neighborhood has established its own social club and many have established websites. Links offered in the column to the left connect with some of the professional looking, easy to navigate pages.

Neighborhoods and Selected Social Club Links

Some of the ambiance and feel of the community of The Villages can be gathered from the names of some of the neighborhoods and a visit to websites maintained by many of them. Below are a few examples:

Promo Vid

Part II

  • Alhambra
  • Amelia
  • Belevedere
  • Belle Aire
  • Calumet Grove
  • Caroline-7
  • Chatham
  • Duval
  • Glenbrook East
  • Holly Hill Villas
  • Largo
  • Liberty Park
  • Lynnhaven
  • Mallory Square
  • Palo Alto
  • Poinciana
  • Tierra Del Sol
  • Villa Escandido
  • Villa Valdosta
  • Villa Vista
  • Virginia Trace

Fort King Street in Ocala.
Fort King Street in Ocala. | Source

Top 15 Hot Job Listings to 2022: Health and Retail

Given the characteristics of the residential population and the number of travelers coming through Ocala and The Villages, the following Healthcare and Sales & Service related job listings should continue to be among the Top 15 to 20 openings within a 25-mile radius to 2022.

  1. Physical Therapists
  2. Physical Therapy Assistants
  3. Occupational Therapists
  4. Registered Nurses (RNs)
  5. Customer Service Specialists
  6. Salespersons - general, retail, speciality.
  7. Sales and Service Specialists
  8. Inside Salespersons
  9. Call Center Specialists
  10. Occupational Therapy Assistants
  11. Tellers
  12. Speech Therapists and Assistants
  13. Dental Assistants
  14. Dentists in General Practice
  15. Certified Nursing Aids

The propensity of physical and occupational therapy positions open in and around the Villages suggests the concentration of retirees in the area and in a good way. Middle-agers and Seniors can often live more active lives longer with such assistance.

Some of these individuals have planned well for retirement and bring with them substantial disposable income, which may be represented in the high number of positions open in sales and service occupations in the list below.

No doubt, some of these jobs involve health and medical products and services which increase in use among Seniors generally as time progresses.

Top Job Advertisers in The Villages Area

  1. Medical Connections
  2. Frontier Communications
  3. Central Florida Health Alliance
  4. Critical Connection
  5. Almost Family - Home health care agency.
  6. Petsmart
  7. Criticalconnection
  8. PTRS – Therapy positions; Brookdale Senior Living (tie)
  9. Pizza Hut & Pizza Hut/YUM! Brands
  10. Reflectx Staffing
  11. HCA Healthcare
  12. Reflectx Services
  13. Ocala Regional Medical Center
  14. Wachovia Bank
  15. Staples

Fastest Growing Industries in Sumter County to 2022

  1. Administrative & Support Services
  2. Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  3. Food Services and Purveyors of Alcohol
  4. Local Government - city, town, county
  5. Amusement and Gambling
  6. Ambulatory Healthcare
  7. Hospitals
  8. General Retail Merchandise Stores
  9. Membership Associations
  10. Educational Services

The industries printed in bold type above are already found most frequently in local job postings.

Fastest Growing Occupations To 2022

Official federal and state government projections of fastest growing jobs include these Titles and Hourly Average Wages for the 2010s for The Villages market area.

This Local Market Area includes all of Sumter County (bold print indicates jobs already frequently listed):

  1. Network Systems and Data Communications Analysts $28.00/hour and above
  2. Home Health Aides (HHAs) $10.42
  3. Physician Assistants $ 42.85
  4. Pharmacy Technicians $12.65
  5. Medical Assistants $12.89
  6. Computer Software Engineers $39.00+
  7. Pharmacists $46.54
  8. Special Education Teachers, Preschool thru Grade 5 $27.04
  9. Respiratory Therapists $23.04
  10. Paralegals and Legal Assistants $22.00
  11. Court Reporters $20.33
  12. Database Administrators $32.55
  13. Occupational Therapists $31.29
  14. Registered Nurses (RNs) $26.74
  15. Special Education Teachers, Middle School $26.39

Local Wildlife: White Ibis.
Local Wildlife: White Ibis. | Source

Recreation and Sports In Central Florida

Outdoor water sports and recreational activities are resplendent in this part of Florida, especially in Orlando, Ocala, and the Ocala National Forest. The region is known for its excellent hiking trails and fishing.

The Villages provides 24 separate Executive Golf 9-hole golf courses and advertise that they are always adding additional golfing opportunities. Greens fees are free to residents. However, a total of 9 championship golf courses, including one each built by Nancy Lopez and Arnold Palmer, operate in The Villages as well. This includes professional tournaments. Greens fees are reasonable and the courses are open to non-residents; 9-hole fees are half price.

Pickleball Rules!

One of the most popular local recreational and sports activities in and around The Villages is Pickleball. A close runner up is the Golf Cart Drill Team competitions.

Pickleball: Giant Ping Pong. Milo Karhu and Vinny Hindley (winners) VS Tom O'neil and Kenny Cornell

Indoor activities and entertainment are well developed in this town in order to please residents and travelers. The result is that the town also draws new workers, families, businesses, students, and conventions to the area.

The Villages offers neighborhood, village, and regional recreation centers, along with a woodworking shop, a polo venue, and several softball fields. There is plenty to do and to watch.

So many activities are offered in The Villages, that you must visit the link to view them all. One unusual activity is the Golf Cart Drill Team. Visit the link at THE VILLAGES RECREATION.

Golf Carts and small electric cars (NEVs) like this one are everywhere.
Golf Carts and small electric cars (NEVs) like this one are everywhere. | Source

Higher Education

  • Lifelong Learning College- 251 Buffalo Trail, Lady Lake: (352) 753-3035 --
    A personal enrichment educational system offered to residents and the General Public with 6 different ways to register for courses. Classes include everything from fine arts to GED preparation. Dance, computer courses, culinary arts, genealogy, languages, parapsychology, real estate - there is even Clown Class. It's all pretty interesting and inexpensive. Educational trips are also offered, such as to Israel or through the Panama Canal. The course catalogue is 74 pages long! (Check the recreation link above.)
  • Beacon College
  • Central Florida Community College in Ocala
  • Lake-Sumter Community College
  • Rasmussen College in Ocala
  • Taylor College in Ocala
  • Nearly two dozen postsecondary institutions are located in Orlando, Florida as well.


History and Background


The Villages was planned and developed beginning in the early 1960s as a retirement and golfing community and expanded to include families in designated neighborhoods. Its original founder was Harold Schwartz. Residential requirements in the seniors neighborhoods state that at least one member for the family must be age 55 or older. People aged 19 and younger may not live in those neighborhoods, but may visit for 30 days per year.

Sumter Landing Golf Cart Wedding Procession

Community and Carts

Properties in The Villages are controlled by the Architectural Review Committee formed of residents that serve three years. Community rules include requirements for such elements as architectural structure, landscaping, and satellite dish placement. This is very similar to the area of Columbus, Ohio named German Village, with the addition of age restrictions.

The place is well known as a fun “golf cart community”, much like Peachtree Georgia, but largely for active seniors over 55. Golf carts are the chosen from of transport along specially built paths and along most streets and roads. This draws news residents for easy of driving and use of alternative energy (electricity).

The Villages operates a local government based on the Community Development District (CDD) model of Florida that governs some 200 communities. It also offers two no-fee homeowners associations: The Property Owners Association (POA) and The Villages Homeowners Association (VHA).

The Old Town Square

The founder of The Villages felt that people were at home in the old town square of yesteryear that anchored many small towns through the 1960s and have made a comeback in urban renewal throughout the country. The Villages supports two major town squares that provide free entertainment, dining, shopping, theater, and other activities. They are named Spanish Springs and Lake Sumter Landing.

© 2009 Patty Inglish

Comments and Additions

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    • profile image

      steam engineering guru 7 years ago

      Those sound like some great places to retire. What else do you know of? What is in the Massachusetts area?

    • profile image

      Mendel Potok 7 years ago

      Alright, I'm calling my financial planner. I so want to retire in Central Florida!

    • profile image

      Occupational Safety Guru23 7 years ago

      Golf cart highways is such a neat concept. I hope that osha and other organizations wouldn't consider that as an occupational safety hazard. Ha, the only hazards I wanna see is a sand bunker and maybe a pond up there.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 8 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Thanks for asking to see more about The Villages, Don! I like the idea of golf cart pathways and electric vehicles, so this was fun. Have a great weekend.

    • dusanotes profile image

      dusanotes 8 years ago from Windermere, FL

      Wow! What a great Hub, Patty. Glad I suggested it to you. We don't live far from there, but I haven't been up at all, so your pictures, videos and copy was great for me, too. Have a great day. Don White alias dusanotes

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 8 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      WOW! You'll have to take some pictures there and post them so we can see. I really like the Town Square concept and that families can live in certain neighborhoods. Also, the concept of golf cart highways is fun and eco-friendly. We have a few here on OSU campus, but need to have this increase as teh rickshaws and pedicabs are increasing. It's more fun than autos.

    • Hmrjmr1 profile image

      Hmrjmr1 8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Patty - Great Hub! I'm looking at relocating there in the next couple years after they get the condos open. Thanks for the info!