Moving to Lawton
Ready to pack up your world and embark on a splendid new journey? Welcome to your personal guide to relocating to the warm-hearted city of Lawton, OK! Life in Lawton is all about small-town charm seamlessly blended with modern conveniences, with a dash of Oklahoma's captivating landscapes thrown in for good measure. Whether you're drawn to it for its robust economy, vibrant cultural scene, or simply its inviting community, Lawton is a place that has a knack for making everyone feel at home. So buckle up for an exciting ride ahead!
What to Know Before Moving to Lawton
1. Breathtaking Natural Scenery
For those with a love for the great outdoors, Lawton, Oklahoma, will be a true paradise. Remarkable landscapes, including the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, are all within a short drive, offering countless opportunities for hiking, fishing, and camping. The sunsets over Mount Scott are picture-perfect, and your Instagram is sure to be the envy of all your friends.
2. The Military Base
Lawton is home to the Fort Sill military base. It's therefore not at all uncommon to see men and women in uniform about town. If you're moving to Lawton, becoming familiar with the military lifestyle may become part of your new routine. And remember: A "Hooah!" will always be appreciated by our soldiers.
3. Delicious Local Cuisine
Oklahoma is famous for its mouth-watering barbeque and comfort food, and Lawton is no exception. From juicy steaks to spicy Mexican food and beyond, you'd be hard-pressed to run out of options for your palate's delight. Make sure to sample some fried okra - a local delicacy - when you're in town, and end on a sweet note with a slice of oklahoma's state dessert, the pecan pie.
4. Say Hello to Sunshine!
Lawton boasts over 240 days of sun every year. It's a perfect place for those inclined towards warmer, sunnier weather. If basking in bright, sunny days and balmy breezes brings you joy, then you're sure to love Lawton. But be sure to pack your sunscreen and plenty of shorts - the Oklahoma sun doesn't mess around!
5. The Inimitable Pioneer Spirit
Lawton's history is captivatingly intertwined with the pioneering spirit of the old west. The town was originally settled during the famous Land Run in 1889, a race where folks staked their claim on land and built their lives from scratch. This adventurous, tenacious spirit still runs in the veins of Lawtonians. Expect to encounter resilience, perseverance and a contagious optimism in plenty!
6. The Sound of Freedom
Something that might mystify newcomers is what locals call the "Sound of Freedom". It's the rumble and boom from artillery practice at Fort Sill. You'll soon get accustomed to it, and before long, you'll be reassured by this deep, rumbling baseline. It's a reminder that there are brave men and women standing guard, ensuring that you and your family can carry on with your lives in peace.
In conclusion, Lawton, Oklahoma is a town brimming with stunning natural beauty, captivating history, delicious food, and a robust military presence. Its residents are warm, welcoming, and resilient, carrying with them the adventurous spirit of the pioneers who settled the place over a hundred years ago. If you're making a move, expect to find Lawton resoundingly welcoming. One thing's clear: There's no place quite like Lawton, Oklahoma.
Pros and Cons of Living in Lawton
Pros of Living in Lawton
Low Cost of Living
The cost of living in Lawton is relatively low compared to the national average. From affordable housing to reasonably priced groceries and healthcare, this allows residents to enjoy a comfortable standard of living without having to stretch their budgets extraordinarily.
Natural Beauty and Outdoor Recreation
Lawton is surrounded by natural beauty, including the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, which is just a short drive away. This provides ample opportunities for residents who enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and wildlife spotting.
With Fort Sill in its vicinity, Lawton has a significant military presence, leading to a strong sense of community among veterans, active duty personnel, and their families. This also brings about diverse cultural exchanges and supportive neighborhood environments.
Historical and Cultural Significance
Lawton bears historical and cultural significance with sites such as the Museum of the Great Plains, Fort Sill Museum, and the Apache Casino. This enriches the cultural life of its residents and provides educational opportunities for all ages.
Lawton is home to Cameron University, which offers quality higher education locally. Effective school districts, vocational training centers, and a variety of educational programs also ensure there are ample opportunities for education in the city.
Cons of Living in Lawton
While Lawton does offer employment prospects, job opportunities might be limited, particularly in certain sectors. This might necessitate commuting to nearby cities or further afield for work.
Lawton's crime rate is somewhat higher than the national average, which might raise safety concerns. However, it's always advisable to research and choose the right neighborhood when relocating.
Lawton's weather could be a deterrent for some. Summers can be intensely hot while tornadoes are also a potential risk, given Oklahoma's location in what's known as 'Tornado Alley'.
Lack of Big City Vibes
If you're accustomed to the hustle and bustle of a large city, Lawton might come across as a little quiet. While it offers amenities, it still retains a small-town charm which may not appeal to everybody.
The public transportation system in Lawton can be viewed as less efficient when compared to larger cities. Residents often rely on personal vehicles for their commute, which might be a factor to consider when planning to move.
Is Lawton a Good Place to Live?
Lawton, OK is a great place to live because of its affordable housing, close-knit community, and access to beautiful nature areas like the Wichita Mountains. In addition, its strong educational institutions and a variety of recreational activities offer lots of opportunities. Overall, Lawton's hospitable atmosphere combined with plentiful amenities make it an alluring gem in Oklahoma!
What Is Lawton Famous For?
The Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge
The Wildlife Refuge in Lawton is home to freely roaming American Bison, Texas Longhorn cattle, prairie dogs, and many other animals. This beautiful area, that covers around 59,020 acres, is a perfect spot for hiking, camping, and even rock climbing. This land offers you peaceful retreat with its beautiful prairies, rugged mountains, and clear water lakes.
The Museum of the Great Plains
With a focus on the culture and natural history of the Great Plains of North America, this museum has become a must-visit in Lawton. It's a dynamic, interactive museum that brings history alive with its exhibits. The collections include historical buildings, farming equipment, and artifacts from Native American cultures.
The Comanche National Museum and Cultural Center
Located in Lawton, The Comanche National Museum gives visitors an in-depth look into the history of the Comanche nation. With exhibits, artifacts, photos, and artwork, the museum tells the stories of Comanche culture from prehistoric times to the present day. It's a must-see for history buffs and anyone interested in learning about Native American culture.
Fort Sill is a United States Army post north of Lawton, Oklahoma. This fort has a rich history dating back to the Indian Wars of the 19th century, and now serving as an important training facility for the U.S. Army. The fort also hosts the U.S. Army Field Artillery Museum, which contains numerous artifacts and exhibits on the history of field artillery.
Overview of Tax Rates
As of 2023, Lawton residents face a property tax rate of about 0.9%. This is relatively low compared to the national average property tax rate of 1.07%.
The combined state and local sales tax rate in Lawton, OK, as of 2023, is approximately 8.5%. This is higher than the national average combined sales tax rate of around 7.12%.
As of 2023, Oklahoma's top income tax rate is 5%, and this income tax rate also applies to residents of Lawton. This is lower than the national average top state income tax rate, which is currently around 6.5%.
The Lawton, OK housing market is considerably more affordable than in many other parts of the US. The median home value stands at $96,700, significantly lower than the US median. As for rentals, the median rent price in Lawton is $750, which is less than the US median. Despite the lower prices, the market sees steady appreciation. Taxes and insurance are generally lower, contributing to the cost-efficiency of owning a home in this location. All this makes Lawton an enticing option for both home buyers and renters seeking affordability and steady property value growth.
Cost of Living
The cost of living in Lawton, OK is significantly lower compared to other cities in the United States. On average, housing, utilities, and transportation costs are below the national average, making it an attractive place for those seeking affordability. However, lower costs often come with trade-offs such as fewer entertainment and dining options. Still, this makes Lawton a cost-effective choice, especially for families and retirees. Remember, when assessing living costs, it's critical to consider personal lifestyle and priorities.
Weather & Natural Disasters
Lawton, Oklahoma is exemplified by a humid subtropical climate, characterized by hot, humid summers and mild to cool winters. The weather is quite unpredictable with temperatures ranging from an average high of 94degF in the peak of summer to an average low of 29degF during the coldest months. This city experiences a significant amount of rainfall throughout the year, with May recording the highest precipitation levels. Snowfall is rare but does occur during winter. Lawton is situated in 'Tornado Alley' and hence, tornadoes and severe thunderstorms are common natural disasters, especially between April and June. Flash flooding can also occur as a result of these storms. Despite these periodic challenges, residents find the typically sunny and warm weather a captivating aspect of life in Lawton.
Economy & Job Market
* The military sector with Fort Sill and the U.S. Army Field Artillery School.
* The public sector with Lawton Public Schools, City of Lawton and Comanche County.
* The healthcare sector with Comanche County Memorial Hospital and Southwestern Medical Center.
* The retail sector with major retailers such as Walmart, Lowes and Sam's Club.
* The manufacturing sector with Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company and Bar-S Foods.
A historical view of Lawton's economy reveals a strong reliance on the military sector, courtesy of Fort Sill and the U.S. Army Field Artillery School. The presence of this major military base has created a wealth of jobs and bolstered the local economy for decades. Presently, the city continues to lean on its military backbone while also diversifying with the introduction and growth of other sectors. The healthcare sector, in particular, has seen substantial growth, with the Comanche County Memorial Hospital and Southwestern Medical Center providing a significant amount of area jobs. Other vital sectors include public institutions (namely, the Lawton Public Schools, City of Lawton, and Comanche County), retail, and manufacturing.
If you're considering making a move to Lawton, it's important to understand the local job market and employment rates. The city has a lower unemployment rate than the national average, which speaks to the availability of jobs. As expected, it's always good to look towards the major employers for job opportunities. These include the previously mentioned military base, hospital facilities, public institutions, and major retailers. Additionally, Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company and Bar-S Foods are significant players in the local manufacturing sector. So, whether you're a professional, a skilled worker, a teacher, or a medical practitioner, it's very likely there's a place for you in Lawton.
Traffic and Transportation
Get ready to ride and glide in Lawton, OK! Here, the average automobile commute times are a breeze at just around 17.7 minutes, way below the national average. That's more time for your morning coffee! When it comes to public transportation, Lawton Area Transit System (LATS) has got you covered. Reliable and economical, LATS buses cruise throughout the city, with interconnected routes to make your journey swift and seamless. Air travel more your speed? Well, you're in luck! Lawton-Fort Sill Regional Airport is right at your doorstep. This passenger-friendly airport hosts daily American Airlines flights that connect Lawtonians to the world. So, buckle up and enjoy the ride, because getting around in Lawton is a piece of cake!
Best Neighborhoods in Lawton
1. Elmer Thomas Park
Starting off our list is Elmer Thomas Park, a slice of paradise right in the heart of Lawton. It's not just a park, but a full-blown neighborhood bursting with character and charm. The atmosphere is calm and peaceful, making it a perfect spot for nature lovers and those seeking solace after a long day at work. Stroll through its lush greenery, have a picnic by the lake, or partake in one of the neighborhood's frequent community events. Laid-back and family-friendly, Elmer Thomas Park offers a great life balance, with modern amenities within easy reach.
2. MacArthur Park
If you're a golf aficionado, you're going to love MacArthur Park. This neighborhood is home to the Lawton Country Club, where you can practice your swing to your heart's content. MacArthur Park is a well-established neighborhood, notable for its quiet streets lined with very well-kept homes. The neighbors are friendly, and you'll likely find yourself waving to locals during your morning jog. MacArthur Park's vibe is one of close-knit community spirit that makes newcomers feel right at home!
3. Cache Road Square
Are you a shopaholic moving to Lawton? Then Cache Road Square might just be the one for you! Cache Road Square is a vibrant retail neighborhood that houses a vast assortment of shops, eateries, and entertainment options. The area is brimming with life, and its city-like hustle and bustle set it apart from the other neighborhoods. Even if you're not an ardent shopper, Cache Road Square's warm, energetic atmosphere has a way of drawing people in.
4. Rogers Lane
Rogers Lane gets the spotlight for being a perfectly balanced blend of urban comforts and outdoor adventure. With the picturesque Lake Lawtonka being just a stone's throw away, residents can enjoy water activities, nature walks and picturesque views. Also, don't miss the Wildlife Refuge area, a true gem for animal and nature lovers. The neighborhood is also known for its range of restaurants, making it a gourmet's delight.
5. Carriage Hills
Last, but definitely not least, we absolutely had to include Carriage Hills on our list. Carriage Hills is amongst Lawton's premium neighborhoods, known for its well-maintained classic homes and serene environment. It's a tight-knit community with an active homeowners association which frequently organizes fun family events. With its beautifully manicured lawns and tranquil ambiance, Carriage Hills feels like a suburban dream perfectly placed within city limits.
In conclusion, Lawton, OK, has an array of wonderful neighborhoods, each with its unique charm and allure. So, whether you're drawn to the relaxing atmosphere of Elmer Thomas Park, the active social life of Cache Road Square, or the evergreen beauty of Rogers Lane, you'll be spoilt for choice when moving to Lawton. Keep in mind that the right neighborhood for you depends on your personal preferences and lifestyle needs. Happy neighborhood hunting!
Things to Do
If you're planning on relocating to Lawton, Oklahoma, buckle up! Life in Lawton is a charming mix of rustic western flavor, thriving art scene, and outdoor adventure. Nestled in the southern part of the state, Lawton offers diverse attractions you're sure to enjoy. Here are seven top things to do in your potential new hometown.
1. Embrace Outdoor Adventures at the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge
Immerse yourself in the beauty of nature at the sprawling wildnerness of the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge. This expansive area offers an irresistible blend of hiking trails, rock climbing opportunities, and water bodies for fishing. Keep your eyes peeled for the thriving wildlife, including bison, elk, and longhorn cattle roaming the refuge.
2. Step Into the Past at the Fort Sill National Historic Landmark and Museum
No trip to Lawton is complete without a visit to the Fort Sill National Historic Landmark and Museum. The site represents a significant slice of military history and offers a fascinating insight into the 19th-century frontier army life.
3. Discover Art at the Museum of the Great Plains
The Museum of the Great Plains is a must-visit for any art enthusiast. The museum showcases a wide range of visual art, historical artifacts, and interactive exhibits meant to engage and educate visitors about the cultural and natural history of the Great Plains region.
4. Enjoy a Show at the McMahon Memorial Auditorium
Experience the vibrant culture of Lawton by checking out a performance at the McMahon Memorial Auditorium. The auditorium hosts a variety of shows, from music concerts and ballets to plays and community events. It's the beating heart of the city's entertainment scene.
5. Explore the Unusual at The Holy City Of The Wichitas
One of the unique features of Lawton, The Holy City Of The Wichitas is an unexpected sight in the middle of Oklahoma. Resembling an old Jerusalem city, this 66-acre area houses several buildings rich in religious historic significance, including chapels and monuments. Their annual Passion play during Easter draws large crowds.
6. Wander in the Comanche National Museum and Cultural Center
If you're looking to delve deeper into the cultural fabric of Lawton, the Comanche National Museum is the place to be. This museum shares the rich history and traditions of the Comanche Nation through an array of exhibits, artwork, and multimedia presentations.
7. Visit the Lawton Speedway
Race over to the Lawton Speedway for a unique evening of entertainment. This dirt-track racing field has been a part of the Lawton community since 1968. The roar of engines and the energy of the crowd combine to create an electric atmosphere that you won't forget.
In conclusion, Lawton, Oklahoma has a lot more to offer than you might expect. From historical treasures to diverse cultural experiences and outdoor adventures, you'll never fall short of things to do. So, get ready to dive into the local scene and discover the charms of Lawton for yourself.
Find Movers for Your Lawton Relocation
Having explored the ins and outs of moving to Lawton, it's time to embark on the leverage of professional assistance for a seamless transition. Great Guys Moving is readily at your service to connect you with top-tier moving companies boasting of impeccable service and affordability. We swiftly collect your move basics and match you with fully insured movers who can service it, forming a bridge of convenience for rapid quote procurement. We invite you to experience this easy and fast process, beginning with a complimentary moving quote for your imminent relocation to Lawton. Initiate your stress-free move journey today.
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