I wish I could tell you one of our beautiful small cities like Sedalia, Warrensburg or Clinton made the 2021 Top 100 Best Places to Live according to Livability.com, but I can't. However, one city we've all visited did make the list.

Columbia came in at #40 on their list. Here's Livability's glowing review of Columbia:

Its 120,000 active and engaged residents enjoy the city’s many forward-thinking restaurants, fun annual festivals and events, parks and open spaces, and relatively low cost of living (median home prices here are still under $200K!). There’s also a robust arts and culture scene, a growing local tech scene and a thriving downtown.

It paints such a great picture of Columbia I want to load up the van, my wife, and my dog and head East on I-70. Ok, not really. But Columbia does have a lot to offer us. Even those of us who call places like Sedalia home. Concerts, shows, restaurants, stores, even a mall. None of which we can get in our small West Central Missouri communities.

Livability gives shout-outs to Mizzou, the rooftop bar atop the Broadway Hotel, Logboat Brewing, Rock Bridge State Park, and Booches in their description of some of the things that make Columbia a great place to live and work.

They weren't the only city in the region to make the list either. Across the border, Overland Park came in third. I had a chance to explore Overland Park a little bit during Kathy's hospital stay there. And I understand why it came in third. Also making the list were two other Kansas College towns. Lawrence and Manhatten.

But what about smaller cities like Warrensburg or Sedalia? Livability wasn't afraid to put small population places on their list. Annapolis, Maryland made the list with a population of only 40,000. Oak Park, Illinois, where I spent some time after college made the list with a population of 50,000. And Pullman, Washington made the list with a population of around 30,000.

Our communities in West Central Missouri have charming downtowns, farmers' markets, lots of things to do outdoors, and the larger communities even have swanky downtown hotels and colleges. Common things all the cities on the list share. Best I can tell we missed the list because we're not hipster enough.

Hipster, however, isn't really a thing in West Central Missouri. Maybe if we put a bar on the roof of the Hotel Bothwell we'll be hip enough to get Sedalia on the list next year.

The 100 Best Places to Live in the Midwest

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