Port Lavaca, Texas
|Port Lavaca, Texas|
|Nickname(s): Port of the Cow|
Location of Port Lavaca, Texas
|• Total||13.6 sq mi (35.3 km2)|
|• Land||9.8 sq mi (25.3 km2)|
|• Water||3.9 sq mi (10.0 km2)|
|Elevation||16 ft (5 m)|
|• Density||1,229.9/sq mi (474.9/km2)|
|Time zone||Central (CST) (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
|GNIS feature ID||1365595|
Port Lavaca is a city in Calhoun County, Texas. The population was 12,248 at the 2010 census. The County had a 3.6% growth which brought the county population to 21,381. The city itself is bringing in more business into the area. It is the county seat of Calhoun County. It is a part of the Victoria, Texas Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Port Lavaca is located at  According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.6 square miles (35 km2), of which 9.8 square miles (25 km2) is land and 3.8 square miles (9.8 km2) (28.23%) is water.(28.615635, -96.629741).
Port Lavaca holds the state record of the highest wind speed ever reached. During Hurricane Carla in September 1961, the winds were recorded to gust up to 170 mph. In 2004, Port Lavaca including the South Texas Area, had recorded up to as much of 12 inches of snowfall.
2000 Census data
As of the census of 2000, there were 12,248 people, 4,189 households, and 3,133 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,229.9 people per square mile (474.6/km²). There were 4,791 housing units at an average density of 489.6 per square mile (188.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 71.95% White, 4.05% African American, 0.47% Native American, 3.96% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 16.92% from other races, and 2.58% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 50.11% of the population. 40.5% of the European American (white) population are of Moravian (German/Czech) origin.
There were 4,189 households out of which 39.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.5% were married couples living together, 13.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 100.0% were non-families. 21.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.83 and the average family size was 3.31.
In the city the population was 30.3% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 28.7% from 25 to 44, 19.3% from 45 to 64, and 12.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 99.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.8 males. The median income for a household in the city was $33,626, and the median income for a family was $38,250. Males had a median income of $35,526 versus $18,427 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,431. About 16.8% of families and 20.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.0% of those under age 18 and 14.7% of those age 65 or over.
An important economic hub is the Port of Port Lavaca. The city is also centrally located between several large manufacturing facilities including Alcoa, Formosa Plastics, and DuPont where many Port Lavaca residents work. Fishing is also an important part of the local economy, particularly shrimp and oysters. Tourism makes up a small portion of the Port Lavaca economy as well. "Winter Texans" from colder states and Canada stay in the city's many RV and Camping parks between October and April.
Port Lavaca is served by the Calhoun County Independent School District. Port Lavaca is served by two Pre-Kindergarten through 5th grade elementary schools: H.J.M Elementary School and Jackson/Roosevelt Elementary School. All residents are zoned to Travis Middle School (grades 6 through 8) and Calhoun High School (9 through 12). Hope High School is another high school, mainly for students with special needs. Our Lady of the Gulf Catholic school, pre-K through grade 8, has also served the county since 1996.
Victoria College has an extension campus at the former Harrison Elementary School campus. Most of the courses offered there are through distance learning and "ITV" television learning from the VC main campus.
Memorial Medical Center which is located in the city of Port Lavaca is a small Hospital that serves the city, and county as well.
Calhoun County Airport, a general aviation airport, is located in unincorporated Calhoun County northwest of Port Lavaca. R-Transit is a bus transportation within the Victoria Metro Area. U.S. 87 (Main Street) comes into Port Lavaca as a four-lane divided highway, and then narrows down as it runs through Port Lavaca's historical Downtown.
Entertainment and Recreation
Port Lavaca is regionally known for its large number of eateries for a city of its size. Local Tex-Mex style restaurants are particularly popular among locals. These feature a South Texas style of Mexican influenced food, heavy on cheese and a brown chili gravy. Seafood is also to be found in some degree at virtually all local restaurants.
In 2006, two new fishing piers with light for night fishermen were constructed in Port Lavaca and one at the 6 Mile Park. This pier is located at the eastern end of Main St. in the vicinity of the Nautical Landings Marina. The second pier, Lighthouse Pier, is located on Hwy 35 at Lavaca Bay. The 6 Mile pier (and boat ramp) is located northwest on FM 1090 about six miles from the intersection of Hwy 35 and FM 1090 (Virginia St.) Common game fish caught in the area include Redfish, Speckled Trout, Flounder, and Drum.
Lighthouse Beach at the intersection of Hwy 35 and Lavaca Bay has covered picnic tables, swimming, and a bird watching trail.
- Hope Dworaczyk (born 1984), Playboy magazine's 2010 Playmate of the Year
- Nelva Gonzales Ramos (born 1965), Texas State District Court judge and a current federal judicial nominee for the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas.
- A. T. Powers (1896 – 1975), Missionary Baptist clergyman was reared partly during his boyhood in Port Lavaca.
- Brucene Smith, Miss World USA 1971, Miss USA International 1974, Miss International 1974.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Connelly, Richard. "Hope Dworaczyk, Playboy's First 3-D Centerfold, Is A Local Girl!!", Houston Press, May 11, 2010
- Foley, Sara (January 26, 2011). "Nelva Gonzales Ramos nominated for federal judgeship". Corpus Christi Caller-Times. Retrieved April 14, 2011.
- Billy Hathorn, "Austin Toliver Powers and Leander Louis Clover: Planting the American Baptist Association in Northwest Louisiana during the Middle 20th Century," North Louisiana History, Vol. XLI (Summer-Fall 2010), p. 129
- City of Port Lavaca website
- Port Lavaca Chamber of Commerce/Information and Events
- Handbook of Texas Online article
- Texas Nature Coast Central Texas Gulf Coast & Port Lavaca Area Information