Quality of Life
As one of Missouri’s fastest growing counties, Stone County’s secret is out. More and more people are discovering its beautiful Ozark Mountain surroundings, neighborly small towns and laid-back lifestyle. Southern Stone County’s communities such as Kimberling City, Indian Point, Branson West, Cape Fair, and the Baxter / Lampe area offer access to beautiful Table Rock Lake, and central and northern towns and villages such as Galena, Hurley and Crane feature rivers, streams and rolling pastures among the hills.
Many people discover the area when they vacation in this captivating location. They come to the area to enjoy Table Rock Lake and its proximity to one of America’s most popular family tourism destinations, Branson. Many visitors come back to stay. They buy or build their dream home, raise their families and continue their careers, or they retire in this recreation-rich environment. Each of the four seasons in the Ozarks brings its own color palette to the countryside. Generally mild winters make the Stone County area a mecca for people who want to escape the harsh northern climate.
Homes are readily available in all sizes and types. They have one thing in common, and that’s country living. There’s no such thing as “urban” in Stone County. About 78 percent of residents live outside the corporate limits of the small towns.
With a county population of 28,658 in 2000, that’s 50 percent more than Stone County’s 1990 population of 19,078 people, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Rapid growth still leaves plenty of “elbow room” at an average of 62 persons per square mile.
Jobs are plentiful in Stone County’s tourism industry. The area’s largest employer, Silver Dollar City, offers seasonal positions to people of all ages at the famous theme park and related businesses. Construction-related employment is also plentiful to keep pace with the rapid construction of homes. Several businesses considered “light” industry are located with the county’s boundaries, and other environmentally compatible industries are invited in the ongoing process of economic development.
The modest cost of living, good schools, effective law enforcement, convenient access to health care, active volunteer opportunities, plenty of civic and religious organizations, and unlimited recreational features appeal to families and retirees who consider Stone County as their next home.
A great attraction to potential residents is Stone County’s rural atmosphere and its proximity to the amenities found in much larger towns. Stone County offers all the expected services and conveniences for residents as well as many thousands of visitors each year. Less than an hour away is Springfield, Missouri’s third largest city. Springfield’s educational and cultural features balance the essential services it offers such as transportation modes, major hospitals and thriving retail and manufacturing industries.
Stone County is also within easy reach of the rapidly growing Springdale / Bentonville / Fayetteville area of Northwest Arkansas, and the quaint tourism town of Eureka Springs, Arkansas.