Bella Vista Focuses On Improvements After Named A Best Place To Retire

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BELLA VISTA (KFSM) - What may come as a surprise -- or not -- the city of Bella Vista has been named the fourth best place to retire in a recent article by Forbes.

City leaders said while they appreciate that designation, they're also working to attract a younger demographic.

With its many  golf courses and incredible views, the City of Bella Vista has been known for its aging population.

"Whenever I was a kid, nobody wanted to come here," said Stephanie Dean, a resident who grew up in the area. "It seemed like it was really far out of the way if they lived in Bentonville. We were considered one of the only young families in Bella Vista."

Dean watched the once sleepy town grow into the thriving community it's considered today.

"Now everywhere you go it's very diverse," said Dean. "You see very young families up too; still there are a lot of retired people, but it's not like it used to be."

Data from the U.S. Census Bureau has shown the average age for a person living in Bella Vista is 50.2 years old, which is nearly 13 years older than the average Arkansan.

Mayor Peter Christie acknowledges the demographic challenges, but said work is being done at city hall every day to attract younger families.

"It's morphed from this retirement concept into one of both retirement and young families coming in," said Christie. "So you have to make sure that you have a balance on the amenities."

In January, the city broke ground on mountain bike trails that will eventually connect to the Razorback Greenway.

Renovations have also been started at Wonderland Cave to draw families.

"Trails, a relaxing way of life, great amenities if you're into golf and swimming and tennis, that kind of thing," said Christie.

Bella Vista has also approved its first farmers market, which is scheduled to open April 17.



  • truthreporter4u

    Bella Vista, like many other small communities across the state, is being ruined by “progressives” who think what they want is what everyone else wants. Cities and towns that end up on these “best places” lists, regret the notoriety years later because their wonderful community becomes just another cesspool of urban sprawl with all its negative consequences.

    • Never go full liberal

      You are spot on. I bought a building lot up there a few years back in order to fish the lakes and possibly build a house on after retirement. The fishing quality has declined steadily and the price to fish has increased steadily and they have finally priced me out of fishing up there. I am sure that is what the board members had in mind when they increased the membership photo ID’s for non-resident property owners 386% from one year to the next. If 100% of my money spent went to the biologist to take care of the lakes I would be all for it, but I do not golf and I do not feel the need to pay for flood repairs on the golf course.

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