A slower pace of life can be found in Fordland located just 20 minutes east of Springfield on US Highway 60. This rural community still offers great schools and the sun will always be at your back if you commute into the Springfield metro area! Fordland is the kind of town where everyone knows the local police officer by his first name. The KOLR television tower, located in Fordland, is one of the tallest structures in the United States. The Fordland Small Animal and Poultry Swap is one of the largest and longest running small animal swap meets in the Ozarks region. If you are an animal lover, this is the place to find chickens, geese, turkeys, ducks, rabbits, goats and much more. This event is held the last Saturday of the each month starting in March and running through October. Fordland is home to Ozarks Correction Center, largest employer in the area and the site of a former Air Force base built in 1950. The small base was closed in 1961 due to budget cuts and was transformed into the "Fordland Honor Camp" as it is a medium security facility. If you are into motocross, monster trucks or dune buggies, the Fordland area has more trails and tracks specifically for these sports than any other area in Southwest Missouri. Nearby is the Ozarks International Raceways attracting racing enthusiasts throughout the year. Fordland is proud to the home of Memory Lane Dairy began in 1977 with 20 cows and a vision for high-quality, fresh, all-natural milk. Today, all milk bottled by Memory Lane Dairy comes from local family farms within 50 miles of the Fordland production facility. As a division of Hiland Dairy, distribution of artificial hormone-free and antibiotic-free milk allows Memory Lane Dairy to distribute its great-tasting milk to families throughout Missouri. A new French bakery and cafe is one of the newest businesses serving the Fordland area. La Galette Berrichonne offers fresh baked breads and pastries. It also serves sandwiches and quiche for breakfast and lunch. The new eatery offers cooking classes and seven-course meals each month. Historically, Fordland was formed in 1882 as a connection point for two major railroads. Fordland was among a series of Frisco Railroad towns running the main line from St. Louis that passed through the central portion of the state and the Memphis line of the same system through the southern part. At one time, there was a Missouri State Fruit Experiment Station located on the J.A. Hanson Orchard in Fordland, as well as a feed mill, flour mill and train station in to wn. In 1903, the Fordland Monitor, a local paper, was on display at the World's Fair. Devil's Den, a large sinkhole with an interesting history, has been written about in Geologic Wonders and Curiosities of Missouri. Fordland was once the location of a farm that specialized in raising elephants for circus companies.
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