Located six miles northwest of Springfield, Willard, MO, was recently named a best town to raise a family. A friendly community in Greene County, Missouri, the city of Willard received all A’s and B’s for key metrics by a Niche firm study. With high ratings for overall safety, education, libraries, housing, access to childcare, access to grocery stress and community involvement, the city ranked second in the state and 32nd in the country. But even if you don’t have children, Willard is an excellent place to buy a home. Some people retire in Willard to enjoy its low crime rate, low tax rate, civic organizations and multiple retail shops.
Learning about its history
Many new residents love to hear about the history of the city of Willard. Historians say the early settlers included people of English, Irish and Scottish descent. Oscar Farmer built the first home in 1836, but the city did not really start to attract attention until 1884 when the railroad came from Springfield through Willard and to Kansas City. The “High Line” is now a fitness trail used by bicyclists, joggers and walkers. Other interesting historical factoids include the fact that Bonnie and Clyde stayed in the Willard Hotel.
Growing at a considerable pace
In 2010, the census report showed a population of 5,288 living in Willard. Officials say the historical population grew from 357 in 1960 to about 3,000 in the year 2000 and 5,454 in 2015. Some of the noteworthy people who lived in Willard include John Ashcroft, a politician, Tom Greenwade, a baseball scout, B. J. Flores, a professional boxer. Lori Endicott was an Olympian, bronze medalist while Jason Pryah was a track and field Olympian. The main road, U.S. 160 is known as “Olympian Boulevard,” because of the Willard High graduates who competed.
Home buyers often gravitate to Willard, thrilled to find a variety of new and existing homes. Longtime residents love the established and progressive recreational systems. Other draws include the Bass Pro Shop, Stockton Lake, Dickerson Park Zoo, and many restaurants. At Realty Executives by Realty Choice, we help Willard homeowners sell their existing homes while searching for a new home. If you are new to the area, contact us for tips on finding a great family home in Willard, MO.