“Kissimmee” was originally a small trading post on the northern bank of Lake Tohopekaliga known as the community of Allendale. After the Civil War, this area was included in a purchase of four million acres of marshland and plains by Hamilton Disston.
The sale price for the land totaled $1 million at 25 cents an acre!
The infusion of $1 million to the state of Florida reportedly rescued the State from financial disaster. In January 1881, Disston contracted to drain the area and deepen the Kissimmee River, so products could be shipped to the Gulf of Mexico and beyond. Many steamboat captains navigated the chain of lakes leading from Kissimmee to the Gulf with cargoes of cypress lumber and sugar cane.
Kissimmee has excellent shopping, restaurants, and amenities. It used to be Miami that had the best shopping, this trend has shifted in past years gradually to Kissimmee for the “best shopping” spots. The weather is sunny and warm for the most part of the year and that will always be a great attraction to tourists. Kissimmee’s Hot spots include:
Osceola County Welcome Center and History Museum is in Osceola County, Florida. It includes the Osceola County Historical Society Museum’s local history exhibits as well as Pioneer Village and its Ross Lanier House. Ross Lanier House includes a blacksmith shop, one-room schoolhouse, 1882 citrus packing house, general store, and “cracker house” cow camp. The center includes a multi-purpose room with 50 theater style seats and mini-kitchen. The center and museum are the Osceola County Historical Society. Exhibitions feature swamplands, pine flatwoods, oak hammock, and lakefront dioramas with interactive displays and scavenger hunt challenges. A screen room overlooks Shingle Creek and it can be accessed outside the museum on the 7.8 acres of Mary Kendall Steffee Nature Preserve.
Old Town is an amusement park and outdoor shopping mall located in Osceola County. Operating since 1986, its original purpose was to be an entertainment complex and provide unique shopping experiences. Old Town’s iconic Ferris Wheel was renovated in 2017. Take a spin on this Italian hand-built LED ride and enjoy spectacular views of Kissimmee and all of Orlando. Every weekend, enjoy classic cars and trucks throughout Old Town. At night, line the sidewalk to watch these beautiful cars drive down Old Town’s brick-layered Main Street for the “Friday Nite Muscle Car Cruise “and Saturday Nite Classic Car Cruise (the longest running weekly car show and cruise in America).
Many see Kissimmee as the place where they would like to retire. First and foremost Kissimmee has a family friendly atmosphere and has a number of great schools to choose from. Kissimmee has some of the best golf courses, housing, and entertainment in all of Orlando.