Best towns in Iowa

SEIOWA CLONE

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Dec 19, 2018
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Mount Vernon is amazing! Great restaurants...gorgeous main street and lovely shops.

I might be bias but a pretty awesome school district also!
The rural towns in Iowa that are thriving for the most part have the same MO, close to a larger city, so people can easily commute to work in the bigger town. Nice size school district but too large that they cannot compete, so they end up winning a lot of games 2/4 A type of district. Have lots of families that do not want to send their kids to a larger urban school district, so they put down roots in the town of 5/10 thousand. Another town like this is Van Meter. Close to everything but small town living at it finest.
 
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WhatchaGonnaDo

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Jun 28, 2011
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Based upon a quick check of Google maps. It looks like Vinje consists of a bar. That's a winner to me.
They used to do dollar hamburger nights (no cheese, it's an extra dollar for a cheeseburger) and it was always packed with townies

I grew up in the area and I regularly went there, super greasy but very delicious. There used to be a sand volleyball court too, but from Google Maps looks like they stopped maintaining it
 

hiltonisheaven

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Apr 11, 2006
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Ankeny
I like Decorah, Mt Vernon, Manchester, Dubuque, Bellevue…yeah, the driftless region is my favorite part of Iowa. Lots of outdoor activities and scenic views. Pikes Peak is my favorite park in Iowa. Go see it if you haven’t.
 

Kinch

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Sep 19, 2021
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In southeast Iowa, Washington, Mt. Pleasant and Fairfield are nice. Keosauqua and Bentonsport/Vernon are too.
 
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ghyland7

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Ames and Iowa City are awesome, outside of a certain old stadium in Iowa City……

Des Moines is honestly a great place to live, speaking as a young-ish professional soon to start a family.

Pella is clean and nice but a little culty.

My wife (Luther grad) would kill me if I didn’t say Decorah.

College towns are generally great for pretty obvious reasons, and the DSM metro has grown enough to have a lot of the benefits of other nearby regional cities.

Many of the small towns surrounding the larger cities/college towns are nice, IF you want that type of small town life. It wasn’t for me, but being in one of those small towns (with a 20-30 minute drive to a cultural center) has a ton of benefits.
 

KnappShack

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May 26, 2008
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Property taxes in the metro are outrageous and unless you like to drink there is absolutely nothing to do. At least MSP, KC, and Chicago are easy drives. The one thing DM does have is pretty good paying jobs relative to the cost of living.

I would say almost the exact same thing about Chicago. Stupid taxes and not much to do unless you like ****** sports teams and booze.
 

AuH2O

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Sep 7, 2013
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I would say almost the exact same thing about Chicago. Stupid taxes and not much to do unless you like ****** sports teams and booze.

Plus not all types of things to do are created equally. A lot of things are not the types of things you need to do more than a time or two. As an example, a museum is great, but it might entertain you for a few hours in your lifetime.

The profile of a city that provides great entertainment or recreation if you were to live there for 10 years might be very different than one that there’s a ton of things to experience, but is not anything special after a few years.
 
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fcclone

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Not much to do in Chicago? What? Lol.
I think it was a tongue in cheek comment to the poster that said there wasn’t anything to do in Des Moines while comparing cities in Iowa.
 

deadeyededric

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Dec 12, 2009
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You really need go get out more if you think there's nothing to do in Des Moines.
Sports bars and farmers markets? Please sell Des Moines to me! I'm genuinely curious. Keep in mind I'm 44, not married, and have no kids. I will say I enjoyed living in DM proper more than the suburbs though.
 
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Al_4_State

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Driftless Region
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Sports bars and farmers markets? Please sell Des Moines to me! I'm genuinely curious. Keep in mind I'm 44, not married, and have no kids. I will say I enjoyed living in DM proper more than the suburbs though.
Incredible bike trail network, both paved and singletrack. Lots of live music. Close to Ames and ISU sports. Cool minor league/Drake sports in town. Awesome breweries. Killer and diverse food scene.

If you find these options boring and limiting I honestly feel sorry for you.
 

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