Alert
Close

Watch the NASCAR race on Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway. Join the Drive to End Hunger!

Home & Garden
Tool

Most Popular
Articles

Viewed

Best Places to Live the Simple Life

Ames, Iowa

With 55 miles of trails for bikers, runners and walkers, Ames is ideal for anyone who loves wide-open spaces.

2009 Best Places to Life the Simple Life

— David Purdy/Getty Images

Ames is a gracious town—with broad lawns, leafy neighborhoods, pretty parks and ponds—and its distinctly rural flavor is the key to its urban charm. With its thrice-weekly farmers' markets, paddling options on the Skunk River, and 55 miles of city-maintained trails for avid bikers, runners, and walkers, Ames is a place for people who like wide-open spaces. "You can drive less than five minutes outside of town and you are really in the country," says Russ Cross, 53, a bank executive in Des Moines, 30 miles away. The lively downtown area—including a long Main Street, fun restaurants (such as favorite Aunt Maude's, serving up local meats, cheeses, and produce), and a pub with its own brew—adds to the charm. "I love that when I step outside my office on Main Street, it's such a clean little town," says Russ's wife, Beth, 51, president of a local marketing company. "It's one of the most welcoming places I've ever seen." The couple, who like to run on Ames's trails with their golden retriever, say they are a long way from retiring, but when they do, they can't imagine moving anywhere else. "There's just so much that I want to do right here," Beth says.
Back to Article

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.


Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Cereal

Members can download and print coupons for cereals from Kellogg's®.

Grocery Coupon Center

Members can print savings coupons at the Grocery Coupon Center powered by Coupons.com.

membership schwanns discount

Members get double Schwan’s rewards on all online orders from Schwan's Home Service™.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points