Friday, September 9, 2011

Quick stop in tiny Citra

Like Orange City, Citra is a small town with an old US highway going through it, (US 301), that was centered around the growing of citrus. The town's most distinctive feature today is the wonderful Citrus Shop, which has been in business since 1936. My stop last weekend fell during the citrus off season, so I could only take photos of the building and the signs and plan a return trip later in the Fall.

The freeze of 1894 forced many 19th century citrus growers further south.
Image from the State Archives of Florida.

This wonderful Baptist church was built in 1893.

This former bank appears to be in the midst of restoration.

What I enjoy about little towns like Orange City and Citra is that they have in large part escaped the out-of-control growth and bland homogenization that plagues the rest of Florida. There are contemporary structures, but here and there are wonderful historic structures without fanfare or celebration. And the landscape outside of town, especially around Citra, is pure Old Florida. It has a rural feeling with wonderful moss draped live oaks and large palmetto stands instead of strip malls and convenience stores.


  1. I just moved to Citra. It's awesome.

    1. I lived in Citra for about five years. It's close enough to Ocala to allow for shopping and other needs while mantaining the small town atmosphere. I was a pastor at Victory Baptist Church and lived in the Lake and Meadows area. When the citrus industry was wiped out in the mid 1970's the businesses and citizens began to move away but the town still survives and though not as prosperous as it once was, Citra is a great place to live. Also, I'm sure that Victory Baptist Church would welcome you to services. I'ts located on 175th St Rd also known as Pine Church Road.