Overview of Florence
Incorporated in 1887, Florence is a statutory city of 3,800 people located in Fremont County, Colorado. We are situated in Colorado's "banana belt" at the base of the Rocky Mountains, alongside the banks of the Arkansas River. Florence's unique location provides for mild winters, allows for numerous agricultural pursuits, and gives our town unique River and Mountain parks, which are accessible to the public free of charge.
Named after the daughter of the City's founder Senator James McCandless, Florence is known as the first place oil was discovered west of the Mississippi River and it has a rich history associated with numerous immigrants groups. Florence was home to three railroads and a small depot (used today as a senior center), providing a commercial hub for coal and oil mining activities located in the area.
The remnants of this1800's commercial boom are preserved in our charming historic downtown now full of antique and retail stores, as well as an emerging culinary district. In addition to managing normal city services, Florence operates a regional water authority with surrounding coal towns and provides refuse collection services. Florence has a strong sense of community and numerous groups like the Senior Community Center, Rotary, Elks, Chamber of Commerce, Eagles, etc. run events throughout the year. Two of our most popular events are the huge Fourth of July Festival, complete with a wet-and-dry parade, and our Pioneer Day celebration in mid-September.
Florence is truly a “great little town” with many opportunities to become involved in the community and with the people. If you are looking for a way to get involved, check this page often for updates!
In the 1960s, Charles and Velma Price had a dream to preserve the history of Florence. With the aid of Darrell Lindsey, the community came together to purchase the old Eagles Lodge building on S. Pikes Peak and Front Street. In the summer of 1964, volunteers cleaned and painted, collected, and organized, cataloged, and displayed the exhibits you can still see today!
The Bell Tower Cultural Center, operated by the Florence Arts Council, hosts a wide variety of activities for the community of Florence and Fremont County. Classes for both adults and children are offered every month including art, music, health, dance, and yoga.
Space may also be rented out for destination weddings and other events. Staffed by volunteers and supported by the members, this facility has a beautiful sculpture garden in the front courtyard. This incredible building is just a short walk from Main St and easy to locate.
To see a list of City Meetings, please visit the City Meetings page.
Check back here for other opportunities to get involved.
Florence Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors created a community contacts list (below) and a community calendar.
Click the following links for more community information:
Florence has a very ambitious staff with a can-do attitude working for the economic development of the City.
Situated at the base of the Rocky Mountains, easy access to major highways, and with affordable land, plentiful water, and a great growing season, Florence is a great place to open a business! With a thriving antique market and unique emerging culinary district, City officials work alongside local business people, citizens, and regional partners (such as Fremont Economic Development Corporation) to assist existing business as well as try and help new business prospects located in Florence.
The City is one of only a few small Colorado communities to create an Urban Renewal Authority and is open to creative incentives and partnerships that create new jobs and expand existing businesses.
Do you have an idea for a business or are you looking to relocate to Florence? Please contact City Manager Mike Patterson at 719-784-4848 to discuss it. If you have general development or zoning questions for your potential business, please contact Planning Director Wade Broadhead at 719-371-5914.
Come stroll through the bustling downtown of Florence and enjoy the unique finds in our locally owned and operated stores.
Our historic business district is a potpourri of old and new with treasures to be found in every storefront. Florence boasts the most diverse set of antique stores in the state of Colorado and is known as an Antique Capital of Colorado.
Florence has several art galleries displaying the talents of local and regional artists. With the variety in media and style, you are sure to find a piece to fall in love with!
Tree City USA
The City of Florence is proud to be celebrating its 33rd year as a Tree City USA community. The tree committee was created by City Ordinance and meets monthly at City Hall. Florence is proud of its urban shade canopy and diverse range of tree types and is working hard to maintain existing trees and plant many new ones. Old age and changing climates have recently caused numerous trees to die off, and the City is ambitious with its tree maintenance efforts as well as partnering with the Colorado Tree Coalition (CTC) for grants and technical advice. If you have questions about dangerous or unsafe trees contact City Hall at 719-784-4848.
Florence Carved Trees
From Adverse to Artistic
Many of these trees, most planted in 1912 by the City, have begun deteriorating, and several have become hazardous to homes and residents. Some local artists and residents have decided to carve these historic trees rather than have them entirely removed. This eliminates the danger of a dead tree and contributes a new point of interest to our community and a new "glass-half-full" outlook on potential solutions.
Carved Tree Tour
There are carved trees all over town, indicated by the starts on the map. Florence is a pedestrian-friendly town of roughly four square miles, and the tree carvings are scattered throughout town. Keep an eye out for any work-in-progress or recently-carved trees! This project is ongoing as trees die off.
Swing by the Historic Downtown for a unique shopping experience. Florence is home to dozens of antique stores, boutiques, as well as restaurants from around the world. From steak to sushi and sesame chicken to green chili, there's something for everyone here!