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AARP the Magazine Names the Top 10 Best Places to Live the Simple Life


July 27, 2009


AARP Media Relations, 202.434.2555/202.390.0032, media@aarp.org

AARP the Magazine Names the Top 10 Best Places to Live the Simple Life

Tucson, Arizona Takes the Top Honor

WASHINGTON (July 27, 2009) – While America is full of terrific towns, many of them can be high maintenance. Postcard-perfect beach towns come with pricey bungalows and hordes of tourists. Big cities have museums and top-notch restaurants, but living there might mean squeezing into a tiny apartment or headaches over lack of parking. AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world’s largest-circulation magazine with more than 35.5 million readers, today announced their annual “Best Places To Live” list, with this year’s list focused on the towns and cities that are best for living the simple (and often less expensive) life.

Featured in the September/October issue of AARP The Magazine, Tucson, AZ, topped the list of hometowns high on culture and low on stress, followed by Greenville, SC, Montpelier, VT, Logan, UT, and Ames, IA.

AARP The Magazine evaluated government records of hundreds of American towns and cities, ranking them on nearly 20 quality of life measures. The goal was to find towns that truly provide the simple life with great culture, food, picturesque environments, and settings that aren’t spoiled by the stress brought on by high costs of living, traffic, and congestion. Additional factors considered include accessibility to parks and outdoor amenities, the health values of a low stress lifestyle, affordability of the community and cultural opportunities in the area.

“Given the tough economic times our nation is facing, people have reevaluated their priorities and we wanted to mirror that with a list of communities that offer plenty of perks, but minimal hassle and cost,” said Nancy Graham, Editor of AARP The Magazine.

AARP The Magazine’s Top 10 Best Places To Live The Simple Life:

1. Tucson, Arizona: With a population of 525,000, Latin culture embraces Native American spirit in this city filled with arts, dining and bountiful outdoor recreation opportunities, including the 1.8 million acres of the Coronado National Forest that rings the city. With an average of 286 sunny days a year and an affordable median housing price of $155,500, residents have the time and money to enjoy all that Tucson offers.

2. Greenville, South Carolina: Thanks to 30 years of redevelopment, downtown Greenville is now a vibrant town center that includes a pedestrian-friendly Main Street, a performing arts center, condos, and the stunning Liberty Bridge. With an average commute of just 19 minutes, residents can zip to work at local companies such as Flour, BMW, and Michelin without the stress and price tag of living in other metropolitan areas.

3. Montpelier, Vermont: As the smallest and most livable capital city in the United States, this community’s 7,800 residents are active in politics and the city’s art scene.

4. Logan, Utah: Offering breathtaking views and ample opportunities for hiking and biking in the nearby Wasatch and Wellsville mountain ranges, Logan residents rave about the ways to stay active and enjoy the scenery. With a median housing price of $143,860 and an average 16-minute commute, stress doesn’t spoil the view.

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