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    Eglin AFB, FL Image 2

    Eglin AFB, FL Local Information

    Fort Walton Beach is the closest major city to Eglin AFB. It has about 19,000 people, and is in Okaloosa County, which has a population of about 190,000 people.

    Valparaiso (about 5,000), Niceville (about 12,000), Ocean City (about 12,000), Shalimar (about 700), Wright (about 23,000), Lake Lorraine (about 7,000), Mary Esther (about 4,000) and Destin (also about 12,000) are other nearby small communities.

    It is about 6 miles from downtown Fort Walton Beach or Valparaiso to main Eglin base; this takes about 12 minutes to commute, and similar distances from other nearby communities, but the surrounding area is spread out and Eglin is very large, and travel times can vary significantly. The average commute in Okaloosa County is about 23 minutes.

    Local Housing Rental Prices: The average apartment rent in the south Okaloosa area ranges from $700 to $1200 per month, with a lot of variation depending on city and how near the location is to the beach.

    Local Housing Purchase Prices: The average price for a house in south Okaloosa is about $245,000, compared to $276,000 for Florida.

    Short Description of the Area: South Okaloosa County is a northwest Florida collection of several local communities, with a population similar to a middle-sized city in counted together. Overall the area is socially conservative but friendly, with economic ties to Eglin AFB and the tourist business.

    Climate and Weather: The area has a warm humid climate, winter temperatures of the low 60s to high 30s and summer temperatures of low 90s to low 70s. The area has generally pleasant if humid climate, with occasional summer storms off the Gulf of Mexico, including occasional hurricanes. Summers are long and hot, with regular rainfall. Winters short and mild, with less rain. Spring and fall can be relatively dry in terms of rain, but there can be fall flooding from continental runoff.

    Hurricane Warning: Hurricanes do not hit every year, not even every other year, but Florida is subject to occasional monster storms, and everyone living here should be prepared, with emergency supplies and plans. Emergency supplies should include food and water for at least three days, preferably two weeks, for every person in the household; a first aid kit, flashlight, small tool kit or multi-tool, battery operated radio, and possibly a solar power station. Search FEMA Emergency Kit or CDC Emergency Kit for a more complete list.