Community Welcome

Ozark – noted as the “Heart of Dale County” and proud to be the “Home of Fort Rucker” is a truly unique city that offers its residents and visitors the charm and grace of the Old South while allowing access to all of the modern technology you need in a fast-paced world. As the county seat of Dale County, this southeast Alabama city of approximately 14,900 residents is a great place for people of all ages and in all stages of life.

Ozark is located in Southeast Alabama; our appealing year-round climate provides exceptional outdoor recreational opportunities. Access to the Pea River, Choctawhatchee River, lakes, parks, tennis courts, walking and birding trails, family-friendly festivals, golf course and an active parks and recreation department provide endless opportunities to enjoy our beautiful surroundings.

Ozark/Dale County residents have access to first-class education through Ozark City and Dale County Schools, Alabama Aviation College, Wallace Community College and Troy University. Excellence in education is a priority for our city. Ozark also features an award-winning hospital, an active civic and spiritual community, modern business sites and our rich heritage, which can be seen in many historic sites and homes.

Ozark is proud to be known as the “Home of Fort Rucker,” home to the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and the primary flight training post for Army Aviation. Everything from flight simulator cockpit design and training to MRO is happening in Dale County. Local colleges provide employers with a continual stream of aerospace ready employees to select from when hiring. Commercial, general and military aviation pilots are also in abundance in Dale County with the presence of Ozark Airport Blackwell Field and multiple U.S. Military air fields.

In this high-tech age when you can do business from anywhere in the world, consider Ozark! The cost of doing business is reasonable, real estate is still a good value and the quality of life is superb. Ozark is the principal city of the Ozark Micropolitan Statistical Area as well as part of the Dothan, Enterprise, Ozark Combined Statistical Area. Ozark Airport Blackwell Field is a tremendous asset, with a 5,000-foot runway that can accommodate just about any size corporate jet. Ozark also boasts a diverse range of industrial properties ready for occupancy. If you are building or expanding your business, Ozark is the place for you.

Interesting facts about Ozark

The first known European settler in Ozark was John Merrick, Sr., a veteran of the Revolutionary War, in 1822. In honor of him, the town was named Merricks. It was later changed to Woodshop, which was its name when the town received its post office. The first appearance of the name Ozark was in 1855, when the citizens requested a name change.

The county seat was moved from Newton to Ozark in 1870.

Ozark is home of The Southern Star, Alabama’s oldest family-owned newspaper

Ozark is home to three sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places: Claybank Log Church, circa 1852; Samuel Lawson Dowling House; and J.D. Holman House.

Notable Natives
Meg McGuffin, Miss Alabama 2015
Jack Deloney, painter, illustrator
Wilbur Jackson, National Football League
Judge Val McGee, judge, author, historian
Steve McLendon, Pittsburgh Steelers
Byron Mitchell, former super middleweight boxing champion
Marc Ronan, Major League Baseball catcher
Larry Donnell, New York Giants
Naseeb Sailba, co-founder of Tutor-Saliba Corporation
Sam Judah, III, professional baseball player

Mayor’s Welcome

It is indeed a pleasure for me to be the Mayor of this great city and to welcome those of you who are enjoying this “Ozark, Heart of Dale County and Home of Fort Rucker” new publication. My wish is that those of you who are reading this for the first time, natives as well as newcomers, will learn more about our great city. In fact, I invite you to visit me at city hall. Together we will learn more about Ozark and you will soon discover why Ozark is the place to live while at Fort Rucker. After a tour, you will see all that this beautiful city has to offer. You will then be ready to choose Ozark as your new home.

As a military retiree, I can vouch that you will love Ozark. Linda and I had the opportunity to live all over the country and could have selected many places to settle, but we found no other as great as our small city. Our award-winning schools offer most everything a parent would want for their child. We are a small 5A system offering many programs available at 6A and 7A schools. We have plenty of available and reasonably priced homes priced 20 percent less than any of the surrounding cities in the Wiregrass. The weather is phenomenal – a long spring, summer and fall, and a short winter. When you pack up and move here, leave your snow shovel with your neighbor. If you are military, you will soon find that we are a community that welcomes our military men and women with open arms. As a civilian looking for work, Fort Rucker serves as an economic engine offering well-paying government and contract jobs supporting the mission of the aviation centers.

Please come visit and join me for the south’s favorite beverage, a glass of sweet tea.


Bob Bunting

Chamber Letter

On behalf of the Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce members, board of directors and Chamber staff, it is my pleasure to welcome you to Ozark, the Heart of Dale County and the Home of Fort Rucker. I believe you will find our community to be a unique and special place with an exceptional quality of life, a moderate climate, a “can do” spirit and plenty of Southern hospitality. Ozark and Dale County residents work together to make our community a better place to live, work, play, and retire.

With such community spirit and cooperation, it is not surprising to find that many young adults who grew up in Ozark & Dale County return to raise their families here. They are choosing to return to a community they know will provide their children the same excellent quality of life they enjoyed while growing up. As a vibrant, growing community, Ozark has an impressive quality of life … perfect for families, young professionals, students and retirees.

We encourage you to enjoy the many attractions that the Ozark – Dale County area has to offer residents and visitors. These include restaurants, shopping, museums, dance studio, walking and birding trails, seasonal farmers markets, festivals, a pool, golf courses, parks, splash pad, hospital, surgery center, excellent schools, Alabama Aviation Center and Wallace Community College.

Are you interested in starting, expanding or relocating your business to the Ozark area? The Chamber of Commerce is your go-to resource for assisting your business in the Ozark – Dale County area. We are ready to help you connect to the resources you need in order to be successful.

The Ozark Micropolitan area, which includes Dale County, is ranked No. 1 in Alabama, according to Policom Corporation’s 2016 Economic Strength Rankings. Dale County cities and towns that comprise the Ozark micropolitan include Ariton, Clayhatchee, Daleville, Grimes, Level Plains, Midland City, Napier Field, Newton, Ozark and Pinckard.

Through the partnership of the Chamber, City of Ozark, Dale County Commission and local businesses, the Ozark-Dale County Economic Development Corporation provides a unified voice for the area as a way to propel our region forward.

The Chamber is your first stop on the transition to living in Ozark. We hope you find our website and social media page valuable resources as you explore Ozark & Dale County.

Come enjoy our city!

Rosmarie Williamson
Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce
294 S. Painter Ave.
Ozark, AL 36360
(334) 774-9321


Before Indian removal, the area that now includes Ozark was part of the Creek Nation. The first documented white settler was John Merrick Sr., a Revolutionary War veteran, who built a cabin in 1822 on land that is now downtown Ozark. The settlement thus came to be known initially as Merricks.

In 1826, Rev. Dempsey Dowling moved to the area, and his family established the Claybank Church in 1829-30. The current structure, the second on the site, was built in 1856 and is among the oldest log structures in the region. The first municipal water plant opened in 1840 and the first school was established in 1841. Two years later, the town’s name was changed to Woodshop in honor of an important local woodworking business. The town’s name was changed to Ozark in 1855. Stories indicate that Ozark received its final name from a traveler who saw a resemblance to the hilly area of the Foothill Mountains of Arkansas.

When Dale County was established in 1824, the town of Daleville was named as county seat. The county seat was moved to Newton in 1843, but when the courthouse burned down in 1869, county officials held an election to choose a new site for the county seat. Ozark won and was incorporated as a town on Oct. 27, 1870.

That same year, Ozark’s weekly newspaper, The Southern Star, began publication and continues to the present. In 1888 the Central of Georgia Railroad completed a line connecting Eufaula, a center of shipping, to Ozark, and the Alabama Midland Railroad completed a connector line to Troy the following year. In 1914, the Mutual Cotton Oil Company, originally called the Ozark Oil Mill, began processing cotton-seed oil for commercial use. By this time, however, the boll weevil had begun to devastate cotton crops in the area, and Ozark’s agricultural output began to diversify to include livestock, peanuts and other commodities.

Agriculture remained the most important segment of Ozark’s economy until the outbreak of World War I and the establishment of Camp Rucker. Now called Fort Rucker, the installation is the home of Army Aviation and the U.S. Army Warrant Officer Career Center. The fort remains a primary driver of Ozark’s economy.

During the 1990s, Ozark opened the Dale County Agricultural Complex and the Ozark Technology Center to broaden its economy. Today, Ozark has diversified its economy with a wide range to agricultural commodities, industries, retail, services and the military.

Ozark is part of the “Wiregrass Region” so named for a grass “Aristda Stricta,” which is known for its wire-like stem and texture. The Wiregrass Region consists of southeast Alabama, western Florida and southwest Georgia.

Ozark and Dale County’s cherished heritage is kept alive through historical sites located in Ozark and throughout the county. A few of the historic sites not to miss include Claybank Church and Cemetery; Holman House; Eagle Stadium; and Dowling Museum/Ann Rudd Art Center. For more information on local historical sites, visit


The Southern Star, now in its 150th year of publication, is the oldest family-owned newspaper in Alabama, the oldest business in Dale County and one of the oldest in southeast Alabama. Joe H. Adams, now in his 60th year as editor, is Alabama’s longest-serving editor with the same newspaper.

The Southern Star is an award-winning newspaper with subscribers in Ozark, Dale County, many of the surrounding counties, over 90 cities and towns in Alabama and subscribers in 35 different states.

Newcomer Information

Community Information

Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce
(334) 774-9321

Important Numbers

For all emergencies, dial 911

Dale Medical Center
(334) 774-2601

Police or Fire Department (non-emergency)
(334) 774-5111

Sheriff’s Department (non-emergency)
(334) 774-2335

School information

Registration in city or county schools requires you to present your child’s birth certificate and immunization records for polio, rubella and DPT. For more information about the school your child will attend, call the superintendent’s office.

Ozark City Schools Superintendent’s Office
1044 Andrews Ave.
(334) 774-5197

Dale County Schools Superintendent’s Office

202 Hwy. 123, Ste. E(334) 774-2355

City schools

Carroll High School
141 Eagle Way
(334) 774-4915

D.A. Smith Middle School
994 Andrews Ave.
(334) 774-4913

Harry N. Mixon Elementary
349 Sherril Ln.
(334) 774-4912

Joseph W. Lisenby Elementary School
860 Faust Ave.
(334) 774-4919

Dale County Schools

Ariton School
264 Creel Richardson Dr., Ariton
(334) 445-5560

Dale County High School
11740 S. County Rd. 59, Midland City
(334) 445-5562

George W. Long Elementary
2567 County Rd. 60, Skipperville
(334) 774-0021

George W. Long High School
2565 County Rd. 60, Skipperville
(334) 774-2380

Midland City Elementary School
48 Second St., Midland City
(334) 983-1252

Newton Elementary
523 S. College St.
(334) 299-3581

South Dale Middle School
309 Randolph St., Pinckard
(334) 983-3077

Fort Rucker Schools
Superintendent, Bldg. 21037
(334) 598-6396

Elementary School, Bldg. 21038
(334) 598-4408

Primary School, Bldg. 22210
(334) 598-4473

Private Schools

Harvest Christian School
1694 Deese Rd., Ozark
(334) 774-3706

School for individuals with disabilities

Vivian B. Adams School
2047 Stuart Tarter Rd., Ozark
(334) 774-5132

Colleges and universities

Alabama Aviation College
3405 Hwy. 231, South, Ozark
(334) 774-5113

Enterprise State Community College
600 Plaza Dr., Enterprise
(334) 347-2623

Troy University
500 University Dr., Dothan
(334) 983-6556

Wallace Community College
1141 Wallace Dr., Dothan
(334) 983-3521

Human Resources

Dale County Department of Human Resources
513 Carroll Ave.
(334) 445-4900

Dale County Health Department
532 W. Roy Parker Rd.
(334) 774-5146

Mary Hill Family Service Center
204 Katherine Ave.
(334) 350-3668


New Ozark residents should go to the Dale County Courthouse to file for homestead exemption on property. Both city and county property taxes are based on property owned Oct. 1 of each year. Bills are mailed to citizens on Oct. 1 and are delinquent if not paid by Dec. 31 on the same year.

Collection /assessment
(334) 774-2226

Licenses and Records

Hunting and fishing licenses, boat registration, property records and Dale County business licenses
(334) 774-2754

City business licenses
(334) 774-7032


Pet registration/leash requirements
(334) 774-7032

Ozark Animal Control Shelter
1315 Parker Dr.
(334) 774-4633

Ozark-Dale County Humane Society
579 Bivins Dr.
(334) 774-7387

Vehicle Registration / Driver’s License

License renewals are processed at the Dale County Courthouse. Call for fees and required documentation.

100 E. Court Sq.
(334) 774-2226

Driver’s License Department
202 Hwy. 123
(334) 774-6229

Voter’s Registration

Residents of Dale County may register to vote at the Board of Registrar’s office, located on the first floor of the Dale County Courthouse. For more information, call (334) 774-9038


The Southern Star
(334) 774-2715

Army Flier
(334) 255-1239


Alabama Power
461 Andrews Ave.
(800) 245-2244

Pea River Electric Cooperative
1311 W. Roy Parker Rd.
(334) 774-2545

Southeast Gas
402 N. Union Ave.
(334) 774-5855

Utilities Board of Ozark (water/garbage)
275 N. Union Ave.
(334) 774-2336

Dale County Water Authority
283 Campus Dr.
(334) 774-3331

Dale County Garbage
202 Hwy. 231
(334) 774-6212

Troy Cablevision
1298 Andrews Ave.
(334) 443-3310

(877) 837-5738

Location and Transportation

Dale County has a municipal airport within the county and is located within a short drive from several regional and municipal airports.

Nearby airports include:

AirportLocationDistance from Ozark
Ozark Airport Blackwell FieldOzark, ALWithin city limits
Montgomery Regional AirportMontgomery, AL85 miles
Dothan Regional AirportDothan, AL25 miles
Northwest Florida Regional AirportEglin AFB (Fort Walton/Destin Area)115 miles
Columbus Metropolitan AirportColumbus, GA100 miles
Northwest Florida Beaches International AirportPanama City, FL105 miles
Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International AirportBirmingham, AL175 miles
Hartsfield-Jackson International AirportAtlanta, GA205 miles

Municipal airports in the area include Troy Municipal Airport, Brundidge Municipal Airport, Enterprise Municipal Airport, Headland Municipal Airport

Major highways in or near Dale County include:

• I-65 (west of county)
• I-85 (north of county)
• I-10 (south of county)
• US Hwy 231
• US Hwy 84

Rail service is provided by CSX. There are Norfolk Southern intermodal centers located in nearby Birmingham, Alabama, and Austell, Georgia (near Atlanta). There is also a direct connection from the Port of Panama City via railway to Ozark.

Port facilities are available at the Alabama State Port located in Mobile (195 miles from Ozark), the Port of Panama City, Florida (105 miles from Ozark), and at the Port of Jacksonville, Florida (285 miles from Ozark).

Business and Industry

At the center of business and the community are the Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce and the Ozark-Dale County Economic Development Corporation. A strong partnership between the city, the county, the Chamber and ODEC provides a positive environment for current and potential businesses.

In recent years, Policom Corporation ranked the Ozark micropolitan area, which includes Dale County, first in the state, in its Economic Strength Rankings.

“Our ‘economic engine’ Fort Rucker continues to drive our local economy, helping us to remain the top micropolitan area in Alabama, said Ozark Mayor Bob Bunting. “To remain the top player means one thing: we must work harder to stay in first place. It’s a mammoth task to compete for every business and job. The Ozark-Dale County Economic Development Corporation leadership is out front doing just that. I am proud of them.”

The Enterprise micropolitan area ranked second in the state, followed by the Troy area coming in third. “The study demonstrates the stability of the Ozark micropolitan. Since 2008, we’ve consistently maintained a top spot in the micropolitan ranking,” said Veronica Crock, ODEC president. “Our task is to continue working with our communities and existing businesses in expansion and retention efforts while working to bring new opportunities.”

“This is just another example of why it is so important for all of the towns and cities that make up Dale County to continue to work together,” said Dale County Commission Chairperson Mark Blankenship.

The Policom Corporation created the economic strength rankings to study the characteristics of both strong and weak economies. The highest ranked areas have rapid, consistent growth in both size and quality for an extended period of time.

The Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce is actively involved in many aspects of the business community, as well as retiree recruitment, tourism, military affairs, agriculture, education, technology and downtown revitalization. The Chamber continues to work on defining and meeting the needs of the businesses and community.

Ozark-Dale County Economic Development is a private nonprofit partnership that represents the local government and a diverse section of the Ozark business and industry community. The Ozark-Dale County Economic Development Corporation leads the county-wide initiative to stimulate job creation and capital investment in Dale County. ODEC is located in the Ozark Technology Center, 3269 South U.S. Highway 231. For information, call (334) 443-2000 or visit

Ozark Technology Center

Ozark Technology Center provides the following services to new and expanding businesses:

• Flexible and affordable space for lease
• High speed internet access
• Copier and fax machine
• 24 hour building access and security
• Loading and receiving dock
• Assistance with business planning and financing
• Small business resource library
• Use of conference room
• Lighted, ample parking
• Professional support staff



City and County Schools’ Theater Production

This highly anticipated event is a hit with attendees of all ages. The production is performed by talented students from Ozark City and Dale County schools as well as talented adults from throughout the community. Tickets are sold in advance. Held at the Flowers Center for the Performing Arts, 312 East College St. Call (334) 774-4377

Evening at the Mansion

Vegas-styled event hosted by the Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce. The venue is the historic Holman House. Games, music, food and beverages. Tickets are sold in advance. Open to the public. Call (334) 774-9321

Mary Hill Family Service Center Annual Event

This Mardi Gras-styled event raises funds for a great cause. Food and music. Open to the public. Call (334) 350-3668


Dewey P. Williams Sacred Harp Sing

This event is held the first Sunday in March at the Church of God by Faith, 112 King Ave., Ozark. Call (334) 774-9493.


Crawdad Festival

The festival is held on the second Saturday in April in downtown Ozark. Food, music, and children’s activities. Admission is free. Call (334) 774-2618.

Dale County Groundwater Festival

This annual event draws hundreds of elementary school students to Wallace Community College where they learn about water filtration, the water cycle and edible aquifer through fun and exciting hands-on activities. Sponsored by the Dale County Soil and Water Conservation.

Thunder on Tholocco

Thunder is a multi-class outboard drag boat racing at its best. These high-performance machines reach speeds in excess of 100 mph. Also includes kayak or canoe races, paddle boats, an inflatable “slip and slide” and food vendors. Call Family & MWR at (334) 255-9810.


Armed Forces Day

This military-wide celebration is held in May each year at Fort Rucker. Attendees have the opportunity to view static displays of aircraft and military equipment. Open to the general public.

Sacred Harp Sing

The event is held the first weekend in May at Mabson Church on Highway 27 north of Ozark. Sacred Harp music plays an important role in the social and spiritual lives of the people of Ozark and Dale County.

Farmers market

Buy fresh, buy local and enjoy a season of fresh produce. Plants are also available at the farmers market from Vivian B. Adams School. The farmers market runs May through mid-August, Tuesdays from 4 to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon. Located on North Union Avenue across from city hall. (334) 774-2329


Wish Upon a Star Performing Arts Company Annual Production

Talented children and adults participate in a local theater group. Call Jenny Lambert at (334) 379-6987 for information on the next production.


Freedom Fest

July 4 celebration at the Fort Rucker Festival Fields featuring one of the largest fireworks displays in the area. Also includes a kid’s zone with inflatables, rides, games and a variety of local and regional vendors, along with static aircraft displays. Admission is free; gate access pass required. Call (334) 255-1749

Chamber Golf Tournament and Ball Drop

Three-person golf scramble that doubles as a fun networking event for business professionals and individuals. Bring a team or join a team. Held at Silver Wings Golf Course on Fort Rucker. Call (334) 774-9321


South Alabama Pro Rodeo Classic

The South Alabama Pro Rodeo Classic is composed of seven events sanctioned by APRA. Good family entertainment. Admission is charged. Held at the Ag-Plex Arena. Call (334) 774-9190.


Fort Rucker Oktoberfest and Volksmarch

This annual event features live German music, traditional German food including bratwurst and schnitzel, German beer and a keg toss competition.


Claybank Jamboree Arts & Crafts Festival

A well-known and greatly anticipated event held the first Saturday in October. Crafts, art, a wide variety of food, children’s activities and entertainment fill the historic downtown area. Free admission. Call (334) 774-9321.

Civil War Reenactment

Held the third weekend in October in Newton, the battle is staged at John Hutto Park.

Exciting reenactment of the March 1865 skirmish. Other activities include soldier camps, military field hospital, period games, music, ladies tea and Sunday church service. Food, drink and merchandise for sale on site. Free admission.


Holiday Open House

Held annually the second Thursday in November. Participating local merchants offer holiday discounts, refreshments, and door prizes. Lighted luminaries and Christmas carolers create a festive atmosphere. Children also have the opportunity to visit and have picture taken with Santa Claus.

Farm-City Week

The main goal of Farm-City is to deepen understanding of the relationship between rural farmers and urban workers. Since 1955, Farm-City committees have hosted educational events and invited city folk to visit local farms for a first-hand look at how their food is raised. Traditionally, Thanksgiving week has been recognized as Farm-City week. Elementary, middle and high school students are encouraged to enter poster, essay and multimedia contests with entries based on the theme. (334) 774-9321


Christmas Parade

This annual tradition is a crowd-pleaser and features floats, marching bands, area business, local civic organizations, Santa Claus, and much more. Sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Ozark this event is held in December in Downtown Ozark. Call (334) 774-2523.

Fort Rucker Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

Features music, hot chocolate, tree lighting and a very special visitor from the North Pole. After the tree lighting, enjoy complimentary photos with Santa at The Landing and treats for those good boys and girls. Free and open to the public. Call Special Events at (334) 255-1749.

regularly scheduled meetings

Following is a list of organizations that meet regularly, such as city council, county commission, community service groups and boards:

Ozark City Council
Ozark Board of Zoning Adjustments
Planning Commission
Housing Authority
Hospital Authority
City School Board
Utilities Board
Industrial Development Board
Medical Clinic Board
Public Building Authority
Department of Leisure Services
Ozark Dale County Public Library Board
Board of Adjustments & Appeals
Ozark Dale County Technology Center for Development Industry Advisory Board
Ozark Dale County Economic Development

Tree Board
Downtown Redevelopment Authority
Airport Advisory Board
Chamber Board of Directors
Military Affairs Committee
Beautification Committee
Claybank Jamboree Committee
Dale County Commission
Dale County Farmers Federation
Disabled American Veterans, Chapter 94
Ozark Rotary Club
Kiwanis of Ozark
Friends of the Library
Concerned Citizens of Ozark
WoodmenLife, Ozark Chapter 1498