Sebring is a city in Highlands County, Florida, United States, nicknamed "The City on the Circle", in reference to Circle Drive, the center of the Sebring Downtown Historic District. As of the 2010 census the population was 10,491. It is the county seat of Highlands County, and is the principal city of the Sebring Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Sebring is the home of the Sebring International Raceway, created on a former airbase, first used in 1950. It hosted the 1959 Formula One United States Grand Prix, but is currently best known as the host of the 12 Hours of Sebring, an annual WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race. Nearby Highlands Hammock State Park is a popular attraction. Additionally, the house where novelist Rex Beach committed suicide is located on one of Sebring's main lakes, Lake Jackson.
Sebring was founded in 1912. It was named after George E. Sebring, a pottery manufacturer from Ohio who developed the city. He had a unique circular plan as the focal point for the city. The village of Sebring, Ohio, is also named for George E. Sebring (1859–1927) and his family. It was chartered by the state of Florida in 1913, and was selected as the county seat of Highlands County when the county was created in 1921.
Sebring is located in northwestern Highlands County at 27°29′44″N 81°26′40″W. According to the Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 16.0 square miles (41.5 km²), 10.0 square miles (25.8 km²) of which are land and 6.1 square miles (15.7 km²) of which are water. Water comprises 37.8% of the city's total area.
As of the census of 2000, there were 9,667 people, 3,969 households, and 2,305 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,883.7 per square mile (727.6/km²). There were 5,024 housing units at an average density of 979.0 per square mile (378.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 75.81% White, 15.69% African American, 0.57% Native American, 0.74% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 5.06% from other races, and 2.02% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 11.00% of the population.
There were 3,969 households out of which 23.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.0% were married couples living together, 12.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.9% were non-families. 36.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 21.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.91.