If you live in a place that’s somewhere between a major metro and a rustic retreat, you’ve probably been wondering how your city stacks up in terms of excitement level. Today, we’re here to provide that answer, hopefully.
It all starts with figuring out which criteria we can use to determine what we’re looking to measure. In the case of excitement, we’ve already come up with a trusty list of six factors:
- Nightlife per capita (bars, clubs, comedy, etc.)
- Live-music venues per capita
- Active life options per capita (parks, outdoor activities, etc.)
- Fast-food restaurants per capita (the fewer the better)
- Percentage of restaurants that aren’t fast food (the lower the better)
- Percentage of young residents ages 20 to 34 (the higher the better)
With those in mind, we build a list of cities to look at. In this instance, we used 117 cities ranging in population size from 120,000 to 210,000 residents according to the Census. These cities were given scores from one to 117 across all six criteria based on data including business listings and Census demographics, with one being the best possible score. We then averaged these individual rankings into one Big Deal Score for each city — again, the lower the better.
If you don’t see your city in our top 10, there’s still a chance that it made our top 50 most exciting midsize cities ranking here.