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Overview

Introduction to Valparaiso, Florida

Valparaiso, Florida, in Okaloosa county, is 43 miles E of Pensacola, Florida (center to center) and 216 miles E of New Orleans, Louisiana. The city benefits from easy access to the nearby cities and towns with which it shares the Fort Walton Beach metropolitan area. 

Valparaiso History

In the 1800s, the area now known as Valparaiso, was Federal Government-owned uninhabited forest land. Allen Brown, Jr. established his home here in 1901, and The Consolidated Land and Lumber Company purchased the entire region in 1909. Gradually, a sawmill near the north of Tom's Bayou became the center of a small community. John B. Perrine, a Chicago industrialist who visited the area and was impressed by its natural beauty, named it "Valparaiso," a Spanish word meaning "Vale of Paradise." The charter for the City of Valparaiso was granted in 1921. The Eglin Air Force Base, which was established in 1935, played an important role in the development of the city. Numerous World War II pilots were trained at this base, and many of them made Valparaiso their home. Today, the Eglin Air Force Base has become one of the largest air force installations in the world.

Valparaiso and Nearby Attractions

  • Heritage Museum of Northwest Florida.
  • Pensacola Museum of Art.
  • Topsail Hill Preserve State Park.
  • Boll Weevil Monument.
  • Grayton Beach State Park.
  • Gulfarium.

Things To Do In Valparaiso

Heritage Museum of Northwest Florida, located in the city of Valparaiso, displays documents, photographs and audio visual materials documenting the development of the region from an uninhabited forest and fishing area to a popular tourist destination and advanced technology military nexus. The Heritage Park and Cultural Center includes the Camp Walton Schoolhouse Museum, the Indian Temple Mound Museum, and the Garnier Post Office Museum. The Gulfarium houses dolphins and also organizes sea life shows. The Gulf World is a popular marine park near the city. At the Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park, visitors can enjoy swimming, camping, boating and fishing. Henderson Beach State Park has beaches, nature trails and facilities for fishing, swimming and camping. The Topsail Hill Preserve State Park, another popular park in the area, provides recreational facilities such as nature trails, beaches, biking and scuba diving.

Valparaiso Transportation

Pensacola Regional Airport is the closest major airport.

Valparaiso Higher Education

Pensacola Junior College, Okaloosa-Walton Community College and The University of West Florida are nearby colleges.

People

Total Population 5,069
Male Share of the Population 53.7%
Female Share of the Population 46.3%
Senior Citizens 12.6%
Employed Population 16+ 2,978
Age of the Population 28

Families

% of people married 41.3%
Average household size 2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 33.1%
Median Earnings25+ $0
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $0
Median Earnings With High School Degree $0

Wealth

Median Family Income $75,483
% Above Poverty Level 87.9%
% Below Poverty Level 12.1%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 17 minutes
% Working from Home 2.2%
% Walking and Biking to Work 9.9%
% Using Public Transportation 5.6%

Housing

People Living Alone 27.9%
Median Gross Rent $1,047
Median House Value $191,700

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 35.9%
US/American 0%
English 10.5%
Irish 12%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Valparaiso Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Medium City 43 miles E of Pensacola, Florida (center to center)
Nearest Large City 216 miles E of New Orleans, Louisiana
County Okaloosa
Metro Area Fort Walton Beach
Standard Zip Codes 32580
Phone Area Codes 850
Time Zone Central (-6 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 30.508
Longitude -86.502

Valparaiso Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Station NICEVILLE
Distance 1.7 miles
Jan Temp 37 to 61 F
Apr Temp 51 to 78 F
Jul Temp 71 to 91 F
Oct Temp 54 to 81 F
Annual Precip 69.2 inches
Station CRESTVIEW BOB SIKES AP
Distance 19 miles
Jan Temp 39 to 62 F
Apr Temp 53 to 79 F
Jul Temp 71 to 92 F
Oct Temp 55 to 80 F
Annual Precip 63.9 inches
Station WHITING FIELD NAS
Distance 33.8 miles
Jan Temp 41 to 61 F
Apr Temp 55 to 78 F
Jul Temp 73 to 92 F
Oct Temp 57 to 80 F
Annual Precip 67.3 inches

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Crestview 22,524 $59,769
Destin 13,055 $73,068
Fort Walton Beach 20,767 $55,449
Mary Esther 4,109 $70,085
Niceville 13,929 $73,823
Shalimar 676 $88,750

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

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