Pace, Florida

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Pace is a census-designated place (CDP) in Santa Rosa County, Florida, United States. The population was 7,393 during the 2000 census. It is part of the PensacolaFerry PassBrent Metropolitan Statistical Area.



According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 9.4 square miles (24.3 km²), all of which is land.

Recent events

In 2008, Pace attracted the attention of national media when Pace High School principal H. Frank Lay, along with the Santa Rosa County School District, was sued by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of two anonymous students for promoting prayer in school.[citation needed] The School Board and Lay were declared guilty and forced to pay the ACLU's legal fees and sign an agreement to stop all promotion of religion in the Santa Rosa County schools.

Within the past few years, there has been major growth in the Pace area. Several large retailers such as Walmart, Target, TJ MAX, Publix, Lowes, Petsmart, Shoe Carnival and Gamestop have opened stores in Pea Ridge, east of Pace. More new shopping centers are planned for the near future, following a continued trend of local economic growth.


Pace, Florida 32571 is named after James G. Pace, who owned large lumber, paper and turpentine productions that operated in the Pace area and throughout the southeast [1]. Originally just a strip of land north of Floridatown, by the 1912 census, the area was known as Pace [2]. Afterward, Pace's growth was slow, and it remained a small, rural community throughout the last half of the twentieth century. Despite local efforts, incorporation failed at least once and has not been re-attempted recently. Within the last decade, however, growth has increased and Pace has become more suburban, surpassing its predecessors Floridatown and Pea Ridge in population, commercial activity and notoriety. The small area still known as Floridatown became somewhat famous with Hurricane Ivan in 2004 when several homes completely disappeared.

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