The Panama City coastline was voted one of the top ten beaches in
the World. Pristine barrier islands attract hundreds of thousands of
people each year from the world over. A mild climate, invigorating
water sports and recreation, and a laid-back lifestyle add to Panama City's
A paper mill was built on St. Andrews Bay in 1931,
contributing to the area's economy. Port facilities were expanded and
military personnel began arriving during World War II.
Tyndall Air Force
Base officially opened in December 1941 and the U. S. Navy's Coastal Systems
Station was established in September 1945. The combined payrolls of
the two military installations are dominant economic factors.
the second largest contributor to the economy. Recent efforts were
successful in extending the tourist season past the traditional Memorial Day
through Labor Day period. Northern visitors spending the winter
months and college students arriving to celebrate "Spring Break" have expanded
the tourist trade into a year-long business.
The local area surrounding
Tyndall AFB is made up of several small cities clustered in Bay
County. Bay County covers some 764 square miles and is home to about
148,000 people. Eight municipalities maintain their own forms of
PANAMA CITY, the largest municipality and county seat, covers
27 square miles with a population of 38,000.
PANAMA CITY BEACH covers
some 15 square miles with 5,000 people making it their permanent
residence. Luxury hotels and family-operated motels provide
accommodations for tourists. Amusement parks, attractions,
restaurants, shopping, and beach activities provide
SPRINGFIELD comprises 10 square miles and has a population
of 9,500. It has grown from a rural community to a modern city
complete with library, community center, and medical services.
is a residential and business community sharing a boundary and shopping centers
with the city of Parker. Callaway is located seven miles west of
Tyndall AFB and covers 12 square miles with a population of about
14,000. Many of the residents are active duty and
PARKER, with a population of approximately 5,000, is also home
to many military families.
CEDAR GROVE covers 4 square miles and has a
population of approximately 2,100.
LYNN HAVEN was originally a retirement
community for Civil War veterans. Its closeness to the major shopping
and business areas make it a popular location for military
families. The population is approximately 12,000.
BEACH, on the "other side" of Tyndall AFB, is home to about 1,200 year-round
residents. Mexico Beach enjoys about 3.2 square miles of Gulf Coast
and is a "laid-back" vacation spot. Rental cottages and apartments
See contacts/links for details.