Leesburg, Florida is a vibrant city located in the United States, with a population of around 23,671 as of 2019. It is home to the Leesburg Campus of Lake-Sumter State College, which also has campuses in Clermont and South Lake. The city is also the birthplace of Famous guitarist Eddie Van Halen, who tragically lost his life in a plane crash near Flying Baron Estates in 1982.
The city was once an agricultural hub, associated with its annual Watermelon Festival that ran from 1930 to 1957. With watermelon production waning, the Leesburg administration radically invested in a range of infrastructure improvements across the county, most notably the development of the Venetian Gardens waterside park by Lake Harris. In 1980, the city’s major shopping mall, The Leesburg Mall, opened for business.
Leesburg Bikefest was established in 1997 and has become an annual tradition ever since, with a total attendance estimated at 250,000 people each year. An increasing demand for housing in the area has also been attributed to commuters looking to work in nearby Orlando.
The redevelopment of the downtown area along Main Street has created a lovely atmosphere where visitors can enjoy browsing shops and restaurants. Notable names from Leesburg, Florida include music producer, publicist and author, Ashley Wren Collins; Grammy Nominated jazz recording artist, composer and songwriter Theodore L. Croker; former candidate for Florida governor, John Mina; and food microbiologist Dr. William E. James.
Historically, Cooke Field was used as the training ground for the Philadelphia Phillies baseball team in 1923. Later, the stadium was used by the Leesburg Packer that played in the Florida State League from 1937 to 1968 and even hosted shooting exhibitions by Annie Oakley. More recently, the city hosts the Leesburg Lightning wood-bat baseball team in the Florida Collegiate Summer League.
In summary, Leesburg, Florida is a city steeped in history and tradition and one that continues to go from strength to strength. From its traditional Watermelon Festival to the on-going Leesburg Bikefest, the city provides a unique and enjoyable experience for both residents and visitors alike. So, why not visit Leesburg, Florida and experience all it has to offer.
The surrounding area of Leesburg is also home to several cultural attractions, including the Mote-Morris House, a 19th Century home which also doubles as a museum. The house is widely known for being a part of the Underground Railroad, in which escaped enslaved African Americans were assisted in their flight to freedom. It also contains many artifacts from this time period, and is open for public tours throughout the year.
Another sight to behold in Leesburg is the Dabney H. Hamilton Missionary Museum. Located on the grounds of the First Baptist Church of Leesburg, the museum houses a variety of memorabilia from different countries and missionary trips from over 50 years of service. Visitors to the museum will get an insight into how people from different walks of life have come together in order to make a difference.
Leesburg is home to a wide-ranging selection of restaurants and bars, offering cuisines from all over the world. Whether it’s Mexican or Mediterranean, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. For those looking to prevent the night away, Center Street Grill is the place to go with it’s lively atmosphere and delicious food.
The city is also home to a number of annual events, including the Leesburg Art Festival and the Craft Beer Festival. The Leesburg Art Festival is held each year during the summer months and features art from more than 100 exhibitors. The Craft Beer Festival showcases over 200 different craft beers for visitors to enjoy.
On a hot day, there is no better place to cool off than Venetian Gardens Beach. Located at Lake Harris, Venetian Gardens Beach is a public beach with plenty of activities including volleyball and swimming. There’s something for everyone here, with kayaking, fishing, and sunbathing being popular activities.
Nature lovers will also be well served in Leesburg, with the Palatlakaha Environmental and Agricultural Reserve in the vicinity. This natural reserve covers 400 acres of land and includes a number of different ecosystems with plenty of things to see and do.
If you’re a fan of theatre and cinema, then the Marion Baysinger Memorial Library is the place to visit. It contains a number of books, films and other media for entertainment. Fans of history can also check out The Leesburg Heritage Museum. The museum houses artifacts from the early days of Leesburg and tells the story of the city’s past.
Leesburg, Florida also boasts a wealth of outdoor activities ranging from camping and hiking to biking trails and watersports. There are numerous campgrounds located in the area where you can enjoy the outdoors and explore the local wildlife. Not far from town, golfers will find the Silver Lake Country Club.
The city also provides plenty of shopping outlets, with the Lake Square Mall being the largest. It houses all the big name brands as well as local stores and eateries. Movie enthusiasts can also watch the latest films at the Regal Cinema nearby.
For anyone seeking some family fun, the city of Leesburg has plenty to offer. Xtreme Fun Park is ideal for the kids, with its array of rides, games and attractions. Residents and visitors alike can also enjoy the thrills at Leesburg’s Wild Waters adventure park, featuring water slides, pools, and lazy rivers.