Arts & Culture

Family-friendly community events and accessible cultural activities and innovative lifelong learning opportunities are vital to a creative community. They help to form a community where individuals can feel cherished, productive, and fulfilled, resulting in greater health and balance in family, business, school, social, and civic settings.

Bartowans love to create, explore and participate in their community. Arts and culture are significant contributors to our hometown feel. We embrace community creativity and encourage our residents to be active partners in enrichment opportunities. Bartow is one of the first cities in Florida to have an interactive walking tour accessed through an online app. You can hear train whistles and horses clopping down the street, while you’re listening to the stories about incredible historic places.

Art and music can inspire people to think big and think differently. Bartow’s Adult Concert Band attracts people from surrounding communities resulting in standing-room-only performances. Monthly Friday Fests bring a diverse evening crowd to socialize and relax with free music and entertainment.

Bartow has recently embarked on a public art initiative to enhance a distinct sense of place. Located adjacent to the Polk County History Museum is Ft. Blount Park with its display of contemporary outdoor sculptures. Other nearby cities and metropolitan areas feature world-class art and cultural activities just a short drive away, including some of the top tourism destinations in the world.

Creativity is also about learning opportunities. Education is the bedrock of creativity and Bartow has it all: from an annual parade that focuses on a drug-free lifestyle for elementary students, to career academies that are designed to guide and inspire middle and high school students toward their passion in life.

Local festivals and events and recreational opportunities keep our residents of all ages engaged in creative experiences. Bartow is a community that embraces collective creativity, working with individuals, groups, and organizations, towards a thriving sense of place, living and working from the heart.