Nestled in the heart of Van Buren County in Southwest Michigan, Lawrence is a small community with big aspirations. Conveniently located between Detroit and Chicago, Lawrence offers abundant amenities and recreation, as visitors can enjoy themselves at one of the many lakes surrounding the village, or take in the scenery at one of its many farms.
Lawrence was established in 1837, coincidentally the same year that Michigan gained statehood. The original Lawrence Township was much larger than it is today, as it contained what are now Hartford and Keeler Townships. The first high school in the area was built in Lawrence, in 1869, reflecting the growth of this community. Although Lawrence was initially known merely as a mill center, a wide range of businesses are currently proud to call Lawrence home as the village continues to grow.
Lawrence is home to its own public school system, which is made up of Lawrence Elementary and Lawrence Junior/Senior High School. The high school is well-known in the area for its outstanding academics, and it was recently ranked 44th in Michigan for ACT/MME scores out of nearly 500 schools. Lawrence is located just a short drive from Interstate 94, making it easy to travel to Kalamazoo, Detroit, Chicago and beyond.
Lawrence is well-known for a number of festivals it hosts annually, perhaps none more notable than the Labor Day Weekend Ox Roast and Homecoming Festival. This festival began in 1921, and despite a brief hiatus in the latter part of the century, it has returned and is now bigger than ever, featuring three days of activities. The Lawrence Farmer’s Market, running from June to October in the Village Park, is one of the largest farmer’s markets in Southwest Michigan, and draws visitors every weekend to sample local fruit and food.