9 CIVIL AND MUNICIPAL VOLUME 4, ISSUE 6 OZARK , ALABAMA as entrepreneurs or industry employees, ensuring Ozark’s talent pool remains diverse and dynamic. Ozark’s penchant for outdoor recreation is exemplified by its passion for pickleball, a rapidly growing sport that’s captured the city’s heart. The game initially found its place on the tennis courts, which soon brought about a dedicated indoor facility when the courts underwent renovations. “We turned a city-owned building into an indoor court, with eight courts and a half-court for solo play,” Blankenship reminisces. Notably, this transformation was largely driven by the community spirit, with city employees and volunteers playing a significant role in its development. Now a buzzing hub of activity, the facility boasts 124 members with 24-hour access to the courts. The fervor for pickleball culminates in a highly anticipated annual event, the Pickleball Festival, set for the end of July. Another defining aspect of Ozark’s character is its deep sense of patriotism, which materialized through community-driven events. One notable initiative is the flag program, where families can buy flags in honor of a veteran. These flags, adorned with the veteran’s name and their service branch, fly proudly along the town’s main thoroughfares for two weeks surrounding July 4th and Veterans Day. The city’s accomplishments are a testament to their successful partnerships. “It takes a village” says Ellis. The town works harmoniously with utility partners like Alabama Power, Pea River Electric, Southeast Gas, and local entities like Ozark-Dale County Economic Development Corporation, the local school systems, the community hospital, and the Ozark Area Chamber of Commerce. It’s this united front that has propelled the city’s progress. As Ozark moves towards the latter half of 2023 and into 2024, Mayor Blankenship outlines various projects in the pipeline. “We’re working on several housing projects, and we have a new farmers market that is near completion” he shares. The city also looks forward to key annual events like the Ozark Crawdad and