What ties you to where you live?

Money Magazine recently rated Chanhassen, Chaska, Lino Lakes and Owatonna as among the best 100 small towns (population 8,500 to 50,000) to live in the country. Rankings were based on strong local economies, good schools, affordable homes and low crime. But how do you measure the soul of a community? What ties you to the place where you live?

My wife and I live with my inlaws because of a foreclosure and we have nowhere else to go! -Kyle, Plymouth, MN

Why St Paul? Coherent work, circle of friends, 2 cities at my beck & call, a creaky yellow farmhouse: a movable feast. -Bruce Parker

I moved here from Uptown to go to UWRF, never thought I’d fall so in love w/ a small town. I love the sense of community, always running into people i know, and i appreciate the support the town gives to the music and arts community. I will certainly miss RF when i graduate! -Kyrsten, River Falls, WI

Nothing. I’m moving out of Detroit Lakes, MN next year to get to a bigger city! Although It’s beautiful here. -Sara Refsland, Detroit Lakes, MN

Great schools in St. Paul. Quality of life. Good place to raise kids. -Therese

No money ties me to where i live. -Anthony Sundgaard

What ties me to Minnesota is the beautiful trees and people. -Sara, Melrose, MN

My children’s schools. -Lynne, Prior Lake, MN

Upside down on my mortgage…. -Billy, Hugo, MN

Location, location, location. -Paul Picard, Lauderdale, MN

Great Neighborhoods. -Bill, St. Paul, MN

Ties to place I live? A: debt! Don’t misunderstand, I LOVE MN, its people and environmental diversity…don’t want to leave, but debt stops me considering alternatives. -Travis, Minneapolis, MN

What ties me? My mortgage? I kid. 3 generations of my wife’s family ties me to small town Montgomery. -anonymous text message

Food is what ties me to home. ๐Ÿ™‚ -anonymous text message

Share your reply in the comments: What ties you to where you live?

  • Lack of motivation to look elsewhere. I’m planning to move to the west coast this year and the only thing really stopping me is my own lack of motivation to work really diligently on the job search.

  • Dan K

    The local shops and workers tie me into where I live. You go to the corner drug store and see the same person working there every day and it gives a sense of community to your neightborhood. Recognizing friendly faces really generate camraderie in a community and a genial spirit.

  • At the moment, the bittersweet pull of sad memories and my devastating lack of the savings it would take to move away from them.

  • Joseph Papp

    I stay in St. Paul For the Bicycle paths.

  • Jackie

    I recently moved to NE Minneapolis from Uptown and couldn’t be happier. It is nice to live in an area that is more diverse and filled with what I can only describe as “real people”. You can walk a few blocks to your neighborhood pub, fantastic eatery or imaginative art gallery/theatre.

  • Noel

    I just love the neighborhood I live in! Vadnais Heights is close to just about anything. I would like to move south to a warmer climate, but family and friends keep me here. Maybe in my retirement years I will move south…although with my luck I’ll be working until the day I pass on!

  • BrianS

    We moved to New Brighton for the great parks and schools about two yrs ago. We grow fonder each day with the neighborhood and neighbors. Oh yeah, and weโ€™re not too far from either downtown, not that we get out much with young children. Some day.

  • Ely and Minneapolis were recognized by Outside Magazine just last month as being in the top 10 “small towns” and “cities” in which to live. They ranked cities based upon a bunch of factors, including cost of living, unemployment, comparisons of things such as the percentage of the population with college degrees, income level in relation to home prices, and weather. See lists “Best Cities” and “Best Towns” at Outside Magazine website.

  • Mary-Margaret

    I live in the “Uppertown” neighborhood of St. Paul near Irvine Park and W. 7th. The ties that bind me here are: 1) a lightening quick commute (under 5 minutes by car / 20 minutes walking); 2) a beautiful city park, bike paths, great food, and coffee shops all within walking distance; 3) 1800s housing that is unique and affordable; and 4) neighbors who care about making this urban neighborhood family-friendly.

  • RachelC

    My husband’s fire department – he’s a volunteer. We need to live within a certain response time to the fire hall. Me, I like the sidewalks and the small town feel of Lindstrom – even though the commute takes awhile.

  • Jonathan

    My children tie me to Owatonna… fortunately. It’s been great for a single dad in a joint custody for the last 14 years and a fabulous town to raise children with it’s great parks, library and school system. I do plan to move, once my son graduates, to start my life anew with my love of 11years. We’re looking to move southward and cities we are considering are Lawrenceburg, KS or Iowa City, IA. One main reason is for longer and more temperate growing seasons.

  • P. Nielsen

    I’m a Minnesotan, and wouldn’t live anyplace else….although the quality of life has taken a downturn, due to republicans wanting to take the state down to the level of the southern states, it’s still a pretty decent place to spend one’s life…

    Minnesota is the way it is because wise public servants and private citizens were willing to spend monies to make it the place it is (although as noted above, there is room for much improvement). Too bad many of these newcomers didn’t take the time to learn why Minnesota is the great place it is and that they were drawn to. If you want to have a great quality of life, it has to be paid for,

  • Elen Bahr

    Coming home from vacation and having neighbors say welcome back and hug me in the middle of the street. Why would you leave that? – Elen, Selby/Dale neighborhood of St. Paul

  • James

    OBAMA,,,,can’t afford to do anything but stay put.

  • Rebeka D

    Moving away from the Twin Cities (I am currently finishing up a 2-year contract in a Tennessee small town) has taught us what ties us to the Twin Cities: Arts & Culture, (relative) diversity of people and perspective, wonderful options for educating our children, and living near family. Oh, and yes, I miss snow (don’t tell my husband)! We will be back in less than a year.

  • Affordable housing for the lifestyle that we want. The lifestyle is small town, smaller schools, quiet and relaxation. Belle Plaine has grown quite a bit in the past couple of years, but I love that we do not have any department stores in town. I also love that there is a local hardware store that we go to and not a Home Depot.

  • Adam

    NE Minneapolis, a vibrant arts scene, great pubs that won’t break your wallet, great music. Its what everybody in Uptown thinks they have.

  • Katannah Day

    What keeps me here? My granddaughter. I didn’t have the chance to really get to know my other 3 grandchildren but this one I have known from birth and I can’t imagine not being able to see her on a regular basis.

  • Emily B

    i am tied to minneapolis for the city’s beauty, the progressive ideology and the can-do mentality of minnesotans.

  • Jim Ahrens

    History — my family has been in Minneapolis over 100 year. I live (and grew up) in the part of town my father grew up in, and I attend the church my grandparents joined in 1923.

  • Emily Zweber

    Our family has been farming the same piece of land since 1906. A strong sense of commitment to the land and our community keep us in rural Elko/New Market. Everyone knows your name at the bank, post office, gas station and of course the only church in town. We plan on staying another 100 years or more, unless urban sprawl forces us out.

  • Holly

    Steadfast yet moody, Gitche Gumee tugs on my heart. Lake Superior casts a magical spell upon the hill dwellers here. We cherish her majesty and revel in the spectacular, inevitable march of the seasons. Holly in Duluth

  • Lynne

    The view from almost every room in my home. It’s a huge picture that constantly changes with the seasons. The neighbors are great. My husband has an easy commute to his office and to the airport. There’s a lake and a golf course and all the services one could want or need close by. What could be more perfect? Now if only those three, cold weeks in January could always be in positive temperatures.

  • Lynne

    The view from almost every room in my home. It’s a huge picture that constantly changes with the seasons. The neighbors are great. My husband has an easy commute to his office and to the airport. There’s a lake and a golf course and all the services one could want or need close by. What could be more perfect? Now if only those three, cold weeks in January could always be in positive temperatures.

  • Nicki

    Why Duluth? Lake Superior! ๐Ÿ™‚ Less than five minutes from my apartment is a beach or a spot on the shore where I can find some serenity!

  • Paul

    I live in Elk River and hope to work downtown using Northstar. So I guess I’m tied to the railroad track ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • byron

    I am attached to where I live in large part due to my children’s schools.

  • Mai

    Falcon Heights is a great place to live. It’s a little city located right in the middle of Saint Paul, Minneapolis, and Roseville. It’s like a hidden city, but located two blocks away from Larpendeur and Snelling.

  • DNA

    Neurological imprinting and conditioning…though those are simple enough to reprogram I find Minneapolis (the Twin Cities), Minnesota beautiful, intelligent, sacred and healthy with room and willingness to re-imprint and evolve. I could even ride through 2012 living here…though India or the like may also be a possibility.

  • DNA

    Neurological imprinting and conditioning…though those are simple enough to reprogram I find Minneapolis (the Twin Cities), Minnesota beautiful, intelligent, sacred and healthy with room and willingness to re-imprint and evolve. I could even ride through 2012 living here…though India or the like may also be a possibility.

  • Mike Langen

    My ancestors immigrated to Minnesota over 150 years ago. I live on a part of the original homestead. This secluded part of Hokah Township has been home to six generations of my family. Though I have traveled half the world I still call this home. “What ties me to where I live?” In a word, family.

  • JAN

    Family history….parents, grandparents and great-grandparents…Minnesota, Minneapolis is in my blood. I’ve lived in Seattle & Chicago and enjoyed living in both cities but the Southwest Mpls area is MY home…..