Category: Polk

Polk County

As the geographic center of Florida, Polk County is strategically located on the I-4 Corridor just 25 miles east of the City of Tampa. Despite its abundant transportation connections, Polk County has the largest amount of farmland in the state and 554 natural freshwater lakes.

Auburndale
www.auburndalefl.com
(863) 965-5506

Auburndale is located in the Central Florida Highlands and contains both flatlands and gently rolling hills. The city was founded in the late 1800s by Frank Fuller, who was looking to escape from the cold northeast winters. Auburndale is now home to over 12,000 people and remains proud of its strong spirit of community.

Bartow
www.cityofbartow.net
(863) 534-0100

Bartow was named after Confederate General Francis Bartow in 1867, the first confederate officer to die in the Civil War. Unlike many cities in Florida, Bartow has retained its southern heritage. The city has also been a breeding ground for great U.S. political and military leaders over the past century. Because of the city’s proximity to Lightning Alley, summers have frequent thunderstorms. In the 1990s, a large amount of cultivated land went on the market due to the processing of phosphates. In 2009, plans were approved to develop over 11,000 new homes, several schools, and a million square feet of commercial space.

Davenport
www.mydavenport.org
(863) 419-3300

Davenport was originally a military fort, established in the 1800s. Today, the city has less than 2,000 people and is proud of its small town warmth and charm. Located in the center of Florida, Davenport is surrounded by flatland and gently rolling hills.

Dundee
www.townofdundee.com
(863) 419-3100

Dundee is a humid, tropical town in south central Florida. Located near many tourist attractions, Dundee welcomes visitors in the area to come and experience the town’s friendly atmosphere and laid back approach to life. Dundee is centrally located on the Florida panhandle, with the East and West Coast within a 90 minute drive in either direction.

Eagle Lake
www.eaglelake-fla.com
(863) 293-4141

Named for an eagle who resided in the area, Eagle Lake became home to John Bingham in 1880, when he purchased 160 acres of Florida land. With a slogan of “growing with people in mind,” Eagle Lake has retained its hometown feel. The terrain is flatlands interrupted by gently rolling hills.

Fort Meade
www.cityoffortmeade.com
(863) 285-1100

Fort Meade dates back to the middle 1800s, when a settlement was formed around a U.S. Calvary fort. Fort Meade is the oldest city in Polk County and has over 300 homes on the National Register of Historic Places. Residents and visitors alike will enjoy fishing, hunting, bicycling, or walking the nature trails in the many parks located throughout the city. Area attractions also include Legoland, and a 10,000 acre resort that is set to open in the fall of 2013.

Frostproof
www.frostproof.net
(863) 635-7855

Settled as Fort Clinch in 1850 but quickly abandoned, Frostproof began to be settled in the 1880s by homesteaders drawn to the area by the abundance of game and fish. The city’s name was created as a deception to convince prospective landowners that their potential citrus crops would be safe from frost. Unfortunately, the city succumbed to a terrible frost a few years later which destroyed most citrus crops. Frostprooof is in proximity to Lake Clinch and Lake Reedy with a humid subtropical climate.

Haines City
www.ci.haines-city.fl.us
(863) 421-3600

Originally settled by citrus farmers and known as “Clay Cut,” Haines City was later renamed to honor Colonel Henry Haines, a senior railroad official, in exchange for a railroad station. Home to a Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Haines City has a history of being a fun place to be. Because of its easy access to Orlando, there has been rapid residential growth in recent years. Unfortunately, Haines City has been hit with several recent hurricanes, which is unusual for a city so far inland.

Highland Park
www.highlandpark-fl.org
(863) 455-6518

Located in central Florida, Highland Park is a small village with less than 300 residents. The community has a friendly atmosphere and beautiful landscape, containing 2 lakes and 3,000 acres of land.

Hillcrest Heights
www.townofhillcrestheights.com
(863) 638-2732

Located in Central Florida, Hillcrest Heights is a neighborly town nestled near 2 lakes. Hillcrest Heights is one of Florida’s smallest towns, with less than 300 residents and a land area of 107 acres.

Lake Alfred
www.mylakealfred.com
(863) 291-5270

Soon after the South Florida Railroad reached Central Florida in the late 1800s, Lake Alfred was founded by settlers escaping the colds of Fargo, ND. Since 1917, it has been home to a citrus research and development center, which is part of the University of Florida. Lake Alfred contains over 172 acres of land and park facilities for residents and visitors to enjoy.

Lake Hamilton
www.townoflakehamilton.com
(863) 439-1910

Located near a beautiful lake with the same name, Lake Hamilton is a small town with approximately 1,400 residents. It is situated in the humid subtropical zone of Central Florida.

Lake Wales
www.cityoflakewales.com
(863) 678-4182

The city was established in 1911 near the beautiful Lake Wales. Located among rolling hills on the highest elevated ground in Central Florida, it is also situated in nearly the exact center of the Florida peninsula. Lake Wales is a major citrus producer and is home to Bok Tower Gardens – a botanical garden and bird sanctuary established in the early 1900s. Considered one of the “friendliest small towns in Florida,” Lake Wales is also home to one of Florida’s most unique roadside attractions, a “gravity hill” called Spook Hill. This attraction is an optical illusion that makes a car parked in neutral appear to be driving uphill.

Lakeland
www.lakelandgov.net
(863) 834-6000

Abraham Munn purchased 80 acres of land to create a town as the railroad expanded into the area. Because the Florida peninsula was instrumental in the Spanish-American War, Lakeland began to see an influx of residents – first soldiers and then civilians, as a building boom took off. The boom didn’t last and it took a while for the city to recover. Lakeland was also instrumental in World War II with British airmen learning to fly at Lodwich airfield.

Lakeland was named for its many lakes – 38 to be exact. Lakeland’s main employers are Publix, Fedex, GEICO and Rooms To Go.

Mulberry
www.cityofmulberryfl.com
(863) 425-1125

Named for the mulberry tree at the railroad stop that became the place to meet, Mulberry is still a great place to “get off the train” and stop for a while. Mulberry is located in one of the fastest growing parts of the country. The primary industry is phosphate mining, but Mulberry is a great place to start a business or settle down in the friendly little community.

Polk City
www.mypolkcity.org
(863) 984-1375

While traveling through the area in 1922, Isaac Van Horn, an investor and land developer, realized the beauty of the area and envisioned a city. After creating Haines City and bringing oil rigs to the area, Van Horn saw the need for another city closer to the drilling sites. Polk City was incorporated in 1925, but the city was almost decimated when Van Horn pulled his oil drilling endeavor, and then also by the Great Depression. Today the population is approximately 1,500 but despite it being a small town, there are many events for all ages that take place throughout the year.

Winter Haven
www.mywinterhaven.com
(863) 291-5623

Winter Haven, located in Central Florida, derived its name in the early 1900s from the many people who chose to spend their winters in its warm subtropical climate. Visitors from all over the nation were attracted to the area when Cypress Gardens, a botanical garden and theme park, opened in 1936. It remained open until 2009. Two years later Legoland opened its doors in the same location.

Winter Haven has been nicknamed “The Chain of Lakes City,” as 24 of its 45 lakes can be navigated through a system of canals. It is a haven for water skiers.

County Seat
Bartow

County Population
602,095

Median Home Price
$139,800

Municipalities
Auburndale, Bartow, Davenport, Dundee, Eagle Lake, Fort Meade, Frostproof, Haines City, Highland Park, Hillcrest Heights, Lake Alfred, Lake Hamilton, Lake Wales, Lakeland, Mulberry, Polk City, and Winter Haven.

POLK COUNTY OFFICES

Main Contact Information
www.polk-county.net
(863) 534-6000

Animal Control
(863) 499-2600

County Tax Collector
Joe G. Tedder
1-863-534-4700

County Extension Office
(863) 519-8677

Planning and Zoning
(863) 984-1375

Sheriff’s Office
(863) 298-6200

Municipalities

Auburndale
www.auburndalefl.com
(863) 965-5506

Bartow
www.cityofbartow.net
(863) 534-0100

Davenport
www.mydavenport.org
863) 419-3300

Dundee
www.townofdundee.com
(863) 419-3100

Eagle Lake
www.eaglelake-fla.com
(863) 293-4141

Fort Meade
www.cityoffortmeade.com
(863) 285-1100

Frostproof
www.frostproof.net
(863) 635-7855

Haines City
www.ci.haines-city.fl.us
(863) 421-3600

Highland Park
www.highlandpark-fl.org
(863) 455-6518

Hillcrest Heights
www.townofhillcrestheights.com
(863) 638-2732

Lake Alfred
www.mylakealfred.com
(863) 291-5270

Lake Hamilton
www.townoflakehamilton.com
(863) 439-1910

Lake Wales
www.cityoflakewales.com
(863) 678-4182

Lakeland
www.lakelandgov.net
(863) 834-6000

Mulberry
www.cityofmulberryfl.com
(863) 425-1125

Polk City
www.mypolkcity.org
(863) 984-1375

Winter Haven
www.mywinterhaven.com
(863) 291-5623

Electricity

Lakeland Electric
www.lakelandelectric.com
(863) 834-6300

Tampa Electric
www.tampaelectric.com
(863) 299-0800

Gas Companies

Central Florida Gas
www.cfgas.com
(863) 293-2125

Heritage Propane
www.heritagepropane.com
(863) 665-6016

Water and Sewer
(863) 298-4100

Recycling
www.polk-county.net
(863) 284-4319

Cable Television

Bright House Network
www.brighthouse.com
(863) 965-7766

Comcast Spotlight
www.comcastspotlight.com
(877) 558-6885

Telephone
AT&T
www.att.com
(863) 292-2185

EDUCATION

Public Schools
www.polk-fl.net
(863) 534-0500

HOSPITALS

Haines City Hospital
www.heartofflorida.com
(863) 422-4971

Lakeland Regional Medical Center
www.lrmc.com
(863) 687-1100

Winter Haven Hospital
www.winterhavenhospital.org
(863) 293-1121

All Emergencies
911

LIBRARIES

Polk County Library Cooperative
www.mypclc.org

NEWSPAPERS

The Ledger
www.theledger.com