With just 53 years under its belt, Overland Park has quickly become not only the state’s second-largest city but also one of its youngest. An increasing population of just under 200,000 places the city at #7 on Money’s list of the 50 best places to live in the United States in 2021 and 2022.
What is life in this city like? Let’s check out ten things to know before moving to Overland Park, KS!
1. Enjoy a slower pace of life here
It takes about 20 minutes to drive from Kansas City to Overland Park. The convenience of its proximity to the city makes it an attractive option for those who prefer to avoid urban life. Because of the low population density, the quality of life is higher than normal. In addition to its convenient location, Overland Park’s proximity to the nearest airport (MCI) makes it an attractive option for individuals who frequently travel for business.
Moving to Overland Park is like relocating to a tiny town with all the advantages of city living without having to leave the metropolitan area. There is less of everything— work, crowds, lineups, and even traffic—to deal with. It’s easy to get all that a big city has to offer without having to put up with the stresses of urban life.
2. The city has three public school districts
Overland Park Has excellent educational opportunities. Blue Valley, Shawnee Mission, and Olathe are the public school districts available to families. In addition, there are 25 private schools in the area. Kids in Blue Valley have a wide variety of educational opportunities to choose from, including K-12 public schools and private Harmony Schools. Holy Cross High School is a great option if you’re looking for a private school for your kid.
Overland Park also has a wide variety of summer camps to choose from. When the school year ends, there are a plethora of summer camps from which you can choose to keep your youngster occupied. Camp Fire Heartland, Gage Center, and Music House School of Music are three of the best summer camps in the area.
3. It’s a great place for small businesses to thrive
Okay, so you want to set up a modest shop, but you’re worried it won’t be successful. Or perhaps you’re interested in launching a business of your own, but you’re not sure where to start. You don’t have to worry because there are lots of helpful individuals around to show you the ropes.
“Local Life” is a monthly event held on the third Friday of each month in Overland Park. The goal of the event is to inspire local consumption and civic engagement among the people. When locals and business owners get together for this, everyone has a great time.
Since Overland Park has a kind and accommodating business community, relocating your small enterprise there will be a breeze.
4. Have fun at night at Touche or Johnny’s Tavern
You may not expect a little town in Kansas to have a thriving club scene, but you’d be mistaken. There are a variety of bars, clubs, and taverns to choose from to suit your mood. If you’re looking for a place to go out and dance to the newest tunes, go no further than Touche. If you’re not into the glitz and glam of nightclubs, you might enjoy the laid-back vibe at Johnny’s Tavern.
More refined dining can be found at Louie’s Wine Dive and Kitchen 119. Overland Park is home to its own winery and vineyard, Aubrey’s Vineyards. They supply the Overland Park and Kansas City areas with wine from Napa Valley.
5. The cost of living is 7% higher than the national average
The cost of living index in Overland Park is 107.9, 7% higher than the national average. In Overland Park, a single person will spend an average of $34,823 a year on basic needs like housing, food, child care, transportation, health care, taxes, and other miscellaneous expenses.
While utilities and transportation are lower than the national average, groceries and healthcare are slightly higher. The median home price in the city is $425,000.
6. Fishing is a big deal here
Overland Park is home to many retirees, but fishing is also a popular pastime for younger residents. If you don’t already know, you should probably brush up quickly.
There are around a dozen spots to cast a line within a short drive of Overland Park. About 24,314 Largemouth bass, 4,008 Channel catfish, 3,520 Bluegill, and many more species have been caught in the waters in the Overland Park area, as reported by fishbrain.com. Fishing laws can and do change throughout the year, so it’s important to be informed.
7. The political climate is left-leaning
Those that place an emphasis on politics and religion may want to think about these issues while deciding where to settle down. The local political climate leans slightly to the left, although not by much. The political climate is quite stable.
In Overland Park, roughly 55% of the population identifies as religious. Depending on the specifics of your religious affiliation, you may have a few different options to consider.
8. Enjoy great food at Jack Stack Barbecue, Mud Pie, or Sawa Sushi
Overland Park has barbecue joints like Jack Stack Barbecue and Brobecks Barbecue that are challenging the South’s dominance. The cuisines of the world are represented in Overland Park.
Cozy’s Cafe, Elas’s Ethiopian, Sawa Sushi, and Hibachi are just a few of the fantastic restaurants available. One of the best burgers in town can be found at Q39 South, and you can get your hands on locally sourced products at Silo Modern Farmhouse.
Overland Park also caters to all diets, so vegetarians need not fear. For our vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free friends, we recommend Mud Pie, Unforked, and the Mixx. If you’re curious about what goes into your dessert, Mud Pie is a fantastic vegan bakery where you won’t be disappointed. To give their dishes a unique twist, Unforked prioritizes using fresh, regional ingredients. If you’re tired of making the same old salad at home, The Mixx is the place to go. Whatever you feel like eating, whether you’re a meat eater, a vegetarian, a vegan, or a gluten-free person, you’ll find it at Overland Park.
9. Check out the Glenwood Arts Theater or Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art
There is a wide range of art in Overland Park, perfect for any enthusiast. Stunning Instagram-worthy backdrops can be found at every turn, thanks to the abundance of public artwork. Visit Johnson Community College and look for The Walking Man, or head to Metcalf Street and check out the Shim Sham Shimmy. Sometimes you can even see multiple artists working together to capture the light outside.
After opening its doors in 1967, the Glenwood Arts Theater is still going strong today. It is well-known for both its live shows and its extensive movie selection. Some of the best contemporary art and educational programming in the area can also be found at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art on the campus of Johnson County Community College.
10. Soccer is a big deal for the residents
Kansas was recently ranked first on a list of the Top 10 Soccer Cities in the United States, and being so close to Orlando Park, its citizens clearly share this city’s enthusiasm for the most popular sport on the planet.
To prevent the grass from being too hot for players, the recently renovated Overland Park Soccer Complex features 12 illuminated fields with computerized scoreboards, a field cooling system, and cooling fans stationed at player benches. The OP soccer season is more important than anything else. Head over to the field and cheer on your favorite teams!
Overland Park offers a thriving community for businesses, a bubbling arts scene, great schools, and a more relaxed pace of life. If you’re looking to live in a city where you can enjoy all the amenities that come with a major metropolitan area without all the hassle that comes with it, this city is just perfect for you.