Welcome to Murray, KY
Tucked away in the far western corner of Kentucky, Murray has a reputation as a good place to raise children. In September, 2005, the Alliance for Youth named Murray/Calloway a winner in the first-ever national competition to identify 100 Best Communities for Young People. This award is one that Murray continues to win each year. In addition, Murray has been named a Playful City USA recipient.
With a population of around 18,000, the community has a liberal measure of small-town charm and a long list of quality-of-life amenities. At the same time, its commitment to continued development attracts new economic and industrial investment. Because of excellent health care, low cost of living, recreational opportunities, and exceptionally low crime rate, Murray has been recognized as one of the top retirement areas on the nation.
With easy access to the interstate highway system, Murray's central location is within a day's drive from the most of the eastern United States. Murray, part of the Jackson Purchase Region, is located 15 miles west of Kentucky Lake, 50 miles southeast of Paducah, Kentucky, and 125 miles northwest of Nashville, Tennessee. Although summers can be humid, the climate is temperate, with little snowfall in winter. The terrain is rolling, wooded countryside, with corn, soybeans, wheat, and tobacco as the primary crops. The economy also draws on health care, retail sales, and small industry.
Murray State University, founded in 1922, has an enrollment of over 10,000 and offers many activities normally found in larger cities. As one of the nation's best public universities, Murray State attracts students who are seeking a great education in a personalized, college-town setting. The university's basketball team has been a major contender in the region and has advanced to the NCAA several times.
Murray also nourishes a growing arts community that includes Playhouse in the Park. Playhouse in the Park is housed in a 1907 train/freight depot and is situated in the delightful park setting of the Murray Park. According to the Kentucky Arts Council, Playhouse in the Park is one of the oldest community theaters in the state. The theater is home to West Kentucky Playwrights and the Box of Frogs Children’s Theatre Company.
The city boasts more than 100 organized clubs and activities. Many are devoted to civic improvement, such as Murray Main Street, while others promote leisure and entertainment and personal growth. The city's annual Freedom Fest is the biggest Independence Day festival in Western Kentucky, and the annual Relay for Life continually raises over $240,000 for cancer research.
Recreational opportunities abound, with two city parks, baseball and soccer complexes, nearby golf courses, and tennis courts. Top-notch fishing, boating, swimming, and camping are available at nearby Land Between The Lakes, a 70,000 acre federal reserve. As a designated national recreation area under the management of the USDA Forest Service, LBL is maintained for the public's enjoyment and safety. Land Between The Lakes offers all the outdoor recreation "basics", with some unique opportunities for environmental education and historic interpretation.