Tarpon Springs, Florida

Tarpon Springs Business Signs

Tarpon Springs is a city located on the southwestern portion of the present-day U.S. state of Florida’s protuberance.  Prior to settlement by citizens of the United States, this area of Florida had been inhabited by Native peoples, the Spanish, the English, and then the Spanish once more before finally getting officially claimed territory of the United States.

The first United States citizens to settle in the area were farmers and fishermen sometime around 1876.  These new settlers spotted tarpon (a type of fish) jumping out of the waters nearby, and thus the name Tarpon Springs stuck.  In 1881, one Hamilton Disston purchased the land where the future city of Tarpon Springs would stand.  In 1882, Disston ordered the creation of a town plan.  The city of Tarpon Springs, Florida was officially incorporated on February 12th, 1887.  It was the first city ever incorporated in Pinellas County, Florida.

Today, according to a 2010 estimate by the U.S. Census Bureau, the city of Tarpon Springs, Florida has a total population of 23,484 people.  Interestingly, according to ePodunk, Tarpon Springs, Florida has “the highest percentage of Greek Americans of any city in the U.S.”

Historically, Tarpon Springs, Florida’s economy was dominated by the sponge industry.  Even to this day, many sites and locations involved with this historic sponge industry have been recognized by the citizens of the city, including the E.R. Meres and N.G. Arfaras Sponge Packing Houses and several sponge diving boats, two of which were named after St. Nicholas himself!

As one could guess from Tarpon Springs, Florida’s large Greek American population, the city is famous for its cultural districts.  In fact, the Tarpon Springs Greektown Historic District and Tarpon Springs Historic District are both listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  Other Tarpon Springs, Florida locations listed on the National Register of Historic Places include the Arcade Hotel, Old Tarpon Springs City Hall, Old Tarpon Springs High School, Safford House, and Rose Hill Cemetery.

Tarpon Springs, Florida is also famous for the elaborate religious ceremonies hosted by the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, which is, of course, part of the Greek Orthodox Church.  None of these celebrations is bigger or more elaborate than that of Epiphany, which is observed annually on January 6th.  Tarpon Springs, Florida’s Epiphany Celebration is so well known that in 2006 (which also happened to be the celebration’s 100th anniversary) Bartholomew I, the Patriarch of Constantinople, “who is considered ‘first among equals’ of all hierarchs of the Orthodox Church” presided over the services.  This is notable, for few Ecumenical Patriarchs have ever visited American shores.

Tarpon Springs, Florida is also bustling with many other tourist destinations as well.  Visitors of this beautiful city should not hesitate to visit Sandy Barrier Islands by boat in order to partake in shell spotting and bottlenose dolphin watches.  Or, if land-based attractions are more to your liking, be sure to visit the Spongeorama Museum or even the Tarpon Springs Heritage Museum in Craig Park, which “offers a permanent exhibition concerning the history and culture of Tarpon Springs, Florida’s Greek American Community.”

Do you, by any chance, own a small business in and/or around the Tarpon Springs, Florida area?  Are you considering starting up such a venture?  These resources listed below should aid you if you choose to accept such a monumental quest:

Apply for a Business License in Tarpon Springs, Florida:


Tarpon Springs, Florida Small Business Resources:


Tarpon Springs Chamber of Commerce:


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