DeSoto County is located in South Central Florida, covering 637 square miles and with a population of approximately 34,000. The City of Arcadia, near the center of the County, is the County Seat. Within a fifty-mile radius of Arcadia are several Florida beach communities, including Sarasota, Punta Gorda, Port Charlotte, and Fort Myers. DeSoto County is one of those places where a friendly small-town flavor still thrives. The architecture, businesses and recreation all reflect the County’s history of agriculture. DeSoto County is the perfect bedroom community and it truly is “A Good Life”. Due to its geographic proximity to the coast, its quality of life and the availability of land DeSoto County is being “discovered” by developers and businesses alike. A Walmart distribution center, which employs over 500 people, selected DeSoto County as their new home. In recent years hotels, restaurants and retail stores have found DeSoto County to be fertile ground for business. The southern part of the County, in particular, is experiencing rapid residential development. Some new several-thousand housing developments are in the final stages of planning and approval, which may double the population of the County within the next five to ten years. DeSoto County is abundant in the number and quality of recreational opportunities it provides for citizens. The Peace River traverses the County and provides many opportunities for camping, fishing, canoeing, rafting, and other water/wilderness activities. A source of great pride to the community is the Turner Center, a modern 4,000-seat facility that accommodates local and national concerts, craft shows, circuses, sporting events, banquets, receptions, and other types of community-oriented meetings. In addition to the arena, the Turner Center has an exhibit hall and livestock barns. DeSoto County is home to a large, modern satellite campus of South Florida Community College. Nearby is Florida’s newest four-year university, the state-of-the-art Florida Gulf Coast University. From rodeos, county fairs, festivals, music concerts, livestock shows, canoeing on the Peace River, exploring nature trails, or antiquing in Arcadia's downtown- DeSoto County offers a fresh wholesome lifestyle quite different from large urban centers.