Whipple Bridge
Whipple Bridge over the Bosque River, the old connection to ‘new’ Clifton.Photo ©2010, Shayne Embry

While a visit may have to do for some, more and more people are finding Clifton a great place to live, work, and raise a family. The natural beauty and small-town friendliness of the area may be what first catches one’s attention, but those attributes only scratch the surface of what makes Clifton a great place to call home.

Clifton is proud of its excellent health care system, which includes a modern hospital which in 2004 received a “Top 100 Rural Hospital Award.” A new Clifton Medical Clinic was dedicated in 2008 to meet the needs of Bosque County and beyond. The town also has two dentists and chiropractors, three nursing facilities and pharmacies, retirement housing, assisted living quarters, home health care and EMS services. Clifton has an excellent educational system which included 186 employees and 1103 students in 2010 grades pre-kindergarten through twelve. Within an hour’s drive are two junior college campuses and two major Universities…Baylor University in Waco and Tarleton State University (a member of the Texas A&M system) at Stephenville.

Clifton is proud of its heritage and rich history. The city was named the “Norwegian Capital of Texas” in 1997 recognizing the Norwegian immigrants who helped settle the area beginning in 1854. Both the Norwegian and German influence are richly represented in Clifton’s heritage and culture throughout the year and on special occasions. The Bosque Museum, established in 1924, is an excellent place to learn more about Clifton’s unique past, including the prehistoric remains found in the county estimated to be 11,200 years old.

Clifton’s reputation as a rural arts and cultural magnet has long been established. Clifton is home to the Bosque Arts Center, which since 1981 has been a popular site for both visitors and locals wishing to fully experience or participate in the arts first-hand. The Arts Center has an unequalled permanent gallery collection, which includes works by several nationally recognized Bosque County artists. The Arts Center also has a performing theatre, culinary, photography, art and pottery clubs, and a multitude of classes and special offerings throughout the year. The Clifton area, cited as “one of the 100 best small art towns in America,” is also home to some 20 working artists and sculptors.

Clifton is centrally located almost mid-way between the major metropolitan areas of Austin and Dallas/Fort Worth, and only 30 minutes away from Waco. Employment opportunities include several large employers located in the immediate Clifton area, as well as Waco and other neighboring communities. Clifton has a tax rate comparable or below that of other Texas counties and a crime rate well below the state average. The city has seen a positive increase in housing development, and most every religious denomination is represented in the community or within short driving distance.

Clifton and Bosque County are an outdoorsman’s paradise, complete with excellent hunting, as well as fishing and recreational outlets on the Bosque and Brazos Rivers, Meridian State Park, Lake Whitney and Lake Whitney State Park. The city of Clifton boasts a large municipal pool and a beautiful 67-acre city park, which borders the Bosque River.

Yes, Clifton truly has it all for those not content to merely visit, but who love the area so much they never want to leave.

It truly is a great life…if you live it in Clifton!