Moving to Minneapolis?

Little joke for you – How do you get a Minnesotan to apologize? Step on their foot! ha ha! OPE!

We moved to MPLS several years ago for my husband’s job and before that happened I had given Minnesota approximately ZERO thought and had no idea what to expect.  We came from Chicago and even though it’s also an upper-midwestern city, something about MINNESOTA seemed like a whole different animal – a COLD animal that lives in the middle of “fly-over” country.  Well, I was pleasantly surprised and today I’m going to share a little about why. And, yes, it gets cold, but honestly, I love having 4 really distinct and wonderful seasons to fully enjoy and it seems that Minnesotans feel the same.

Minneapolis and the Twin Cities metro area are pretty big! There are about 3.4Million people living here.  It’s not Podunk.

All of those people support a pretty thriving economy with low unemployment, the HQ of many large companies like Target, Best Buy, United Healthcare, 3M, Cargill etc… and thriving mid and small sized businesses as well.

While the Twin Cities aren’t on the same scale as Chicago, we enjoy a lot of the same benefits – an international airport, fine dining – if you’re a foodie you’ll be glad to know that we have James Beard award winning restaurants. If you’re a beer lover – there are 56 breweries here.

There are Lots of theaters from smaller local theater companies to larger venues that host traveling companies and Broadway productions.

There are 55 museums in the Twin Cities! The Walker hosts contemporary art, the Minneapolis Institute of Art has art spanning 5,000 years and 6 continents and it’s FREE! Some other highlights that we enjoyed a lot when my kid was younger were the Children’s Theater (located inside the MIA), the Children’s Museum and the most amazing hands on museum – the Science Museum of Minnesota, that one shouldn’t be missed!

Bicycling is HUGE in the Twin Cities – year ’round!- and there are 4,000 miles of bike trails in the metro area – from designated lanes on city streets, converted rail lines like the Midtown Greenway and Luce Line Trails, and the 40 miles of paved bike/ walk paths called the Grand Rounds that wind around the many lakes residing within the city of Minneapolis.

Speaking of the lakes (and parks!) the Minneapolis Park District wins strings of awards every year and are an integral part of living here.  Most people live within 10 minutes of a park, and have access to community centers, park programming, tennis and pickleball courts, wading pools, beaches and restaurants.  If you visit Lake Harriet or Bde Mka Ska you can rent sail boats, kayaks, or paddle boards and have a great day on the lake while taking in the skyline.

If you are a sports fan – we have you covered! We have professional football, baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, soccer and hockey teams. No matter what the season, there is no reason not watch your favorite sport.  And if that’s not enough we are neck deep in college sports as well!

There are 34 colleges and universities in the TC area, including the main campus’ of the University of Minnesota – of the best public research universities in the US. The U has many famous alum – including Bob Dylan, Chief Justice Warren Burger and if that’s not enough to convince you – Ric Flair! Minneapolis has a very educated population – 70% of all adults have at least some college education!

Ric Flair – Photo Credit WWE.com

Minneapolitans and Minnesotans are “outsiders” all year long – winter doesn’t keep anyone inside.  From the Art Shanties on Lake Harriet, to Holidazzle and Winter Carnival, and the Luminary Loppet – people here don’t let winter stand in the way of having a good time.  Of course, summer is outside all the time either at the lakes and parks or festivals like block parties, the Aquatennial, Minnesota Fringe Fest, or get something fried on a stick at the Minnesota State Fair.

The Housing market in Minneapolis is currently very “hot”, the average home price is nearly $280,000 in the Twin Cities, but that varies drastically by neighborhood.  If you like being in the heart of the city there are a lot of brand new buildings or repurposed industrial buildings and flour mills downtown on Mississippi River for condo living in the middle of everything.

As you move outward to the north – there are more affordable neighborhoods, and Northeast is somewhat hip and artsy.  To the south and west of downtown are well established neighborhoods with large gracious homes and as you move further south you gradually get into fairly solidly single family neighborhoods, with a lot of home built in the early & mid 20th century. 

Rentals in MPLS are generally between $1400 and $2500/mo.  St. Paul is less expensive for rentals and homes than Minneapolis as a general rule.

The first is that there is great access to good healthcare in the Twin Cities – from the University of Minnesota Medical center, to Abbott Northwestern, to the renowned Mayo Clinic to our south in Rochester MN.

If you love shopping – you’ll be happy to know that MN does not tax clothing purchases, so you can go to the Mall of America and shop yourself silly without paying a dime to the government. There is also no tax on groceries in MN – not the case everywhere, so it’s nice to not have regressive taxes.

If you have questions about any aspect of life in the TC or have a topic you’d be interested in seeing a video on, I’d love to hear from you!