Newcomers to the area, and those who have been here for ages, have something in common: They’re in a place that encourages them to thrive.
There’s no age limit on living a life here that offers a chance to stay fit, to learn, to enjoy diversions, to dine on good meals and to give back to others through service.
The North Tampa Bay area really does have it all.
So, how do you thrive at 55 and above? By taking advantage of the area’s many offerings, that’s how.
Explosive growth within The Laker/Lutz News’ coverage area has created a buzz — and that has greatly expanded the options available for residents.
Pasco County has been having record years, in terms of construction permits, the property tax has expanded and the county’s population continues to grow at a fast clip.
The local economy has attracted large businesses to locate in Pasco and has spurred new business startups.
The population and job increases have resulted in new restaurants, more shopping options, additional housing choices and increased recreational offerings.
Hot spots for shopping and dining can be found near the interchange of Interstate 75 and State Road 54, and at I-75 and State Road 56.
Some of North Tampa Bay’s major shopping options include:
- The Grove at Wesley Chapel, west of the I-75/State Road 54 interchange, offers shopping, restaurants and special events. The center, at 6013 Wesley Grove Blvd., also is home to KRATE, a collection of unique shops and restaurants.
- Cypress Creek Town Center: This development, which flanks State Road 56/State Road 54, west of I-75, offers a wide variety of restaurants, shops and stores, as well as Tampa Premium Outlets, an outlet center which attracts customers from across the region.
- The Shops at Wiregrass: This pedestrian-friendly shopping mall offers a variety of shops and restaurants, as well as comfortable places for people to rest and relax. It also is the venue for various community events.
The I-75/State Road 52 interchange also is poised to become a major job generator and will have housing, office and retail components.
On top of all that, the county has the deeply rooted areas of downtown Dade City and downtown Zephyrhills, which offer their own unique appeal.
The region also is expected to play a larger role in the world of research, as Moffitt Cancer Center’s Pasco campus, known as Speros, develops over time.
When the project gained initial approval, then County Administrator Dan Biles described it as a “generational” type of project, which will have ripple effects for decades.
He and others have said it’s hard for people to fathom the profound impacts Moffitt will have on the area, over time.
For one thing, the cancer center is expected to attract researchers from around the world, as well as enticing global life science companies to locate here. It also is expected to generate high-paying jobs, yield enormous opportunities and open the door for myriad collaborations with local partners.
Pasco County Schools and Moffitt already are working on plans to create learning experiences for students at Angeline Academy of Innovation, a new magnet high school that opened in August, in the community of Angeline, an emerging “new city” in Land O’ Lakes.
But it’s not all work and no play in North Tampa Bay.
There are plenty of ways to have fun.
People who enjoy outdoor concerts and outdoor events can check out the offerings at Land O’ Lakes Heritage Park; at Starkey Ranch Theatre Library and Cultural Center; at the Grove at Wesley Chapel; at The Shops at Wiregrass; and at the county’s many parks, trails and wilderness areas.
Those who enjoy immersing themselves in history can find historic places to explore in the communities of Dade City, St. Leo, San Antonio and Zephyrhills.
Visitors can roam those areas to experience some of Old Florida’s beauty and charm. Those who enjoy an active lifestyle can embrace the challenge of riding San Antonio’s rolling hills, sign up for adult recreation leagues and run 5Ks and other races at local events hosted around the county.
Plus, there are loads of health and wellness classes offered by area health care providers, private gyms and elsewhere.
So, if you’re ready to go for the gusto — you simply have no excuse not to do just that.
Go ahead, get started. The path to living a thriving life awaits you.
Published October 18, 2023