U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Iowa
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 07-28-2012, 09:07 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
11,029 posts, read 13,362,649 times
Reputation: 6744

Advertisements

So I was on a road trip earlier this week and spent the night in Davenport, IA. First of all, I thought the natural beauty of Iowa was actually nice. I live in Connecticut, so it was refreshing to see open fields, but still some concentrations of trees here and there. The traffic was minimal and the people seemed nice and actually somewhat tolerant/liberal. And the area was very convenient, too. I have consistently heard good things about IA, such as the cost of living, quality of life and easier pace of life. Not to mention, I am glad to know that the state has legalized gay marriage (I'm gay), which is good for me someday if I want to settle down with someone. I am a 28 year old male with a master's degree in accounting and 5 yrs of experience.

I've always wanted to live in a place that's less urbanized, but still reasonably tolerant of diverse peoples. I'm also an atheist.

Do you think I would like living in Iowa? I know, I only spent a day there, and in one city only. But from what I saw, I liked it. It didn't feel like a stressful place at all!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 07-28-2012, 11:08 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis
1,704 posts, read 2,626,829 times
Reputation: 2325
Glad you enjoyed our little state. Urban Iowa is very similar to urban Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois (outside of Chicago). I'll give you the rundown...

I'm gay as well and perfectly happy living in Des Moines. It's a growing city on the order of Madison and Omaha that's getting quirkier by the minute. Des Moines is actually sometimes called the Hartford of the West because of its insurance industry. I believe the top three insurance centers in the world are London, Hartford, and Des Moines, or at least that's what they tell us. It's incredible how much the city has changed in the last ten years.

Dubuque is comparable to Davenport, though reasonably smaller, and more into its river culture. It's also at the bottom edge of the Driftless area, which is home to the most breathtaking scenery you'll find in Iowa. Drive two hours up to Decorah for an ultra-liberal and completely charming college town in the middle of some pretty dramatic bluff country.

Waterloo and Cedar Rapids are both fairly blue-collar river cities. Waterloo's smaller neighbor Cedar Falls is a state college town, so it has a bit more of that culture. Cedar Rapids is very big on its Czech heritage. They have a cute little neighborhood called Czech Village as well as the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library.

Iowa City and Ames are the two massive state college towns. Iowa City is very trendy and young, a bit like Burlington, VT. It and Des Moines are probably the two most happening cities in the state, despite IAC's small size. Ames is an even smaller metro, and frankly not nearly as endearing as Iowa City, though still very much a lively college town.

Sioux City and Council Bluffs are the big cities in western Iowa, which is the more conservative part of the state. It's sort of the "it" thing to detest Council Bluffs specifically, since it seems to have trouble deciding whether it's its own city or just a very bland suburb of Omaha.

If you liked the Quad Cities, I'd say it's a safe bet the best fits for you in Iowa are Des Moines, Iowa City, and the QC area itself, or maybe Decorah if you're fine with a small town and moderate isolation. But I do think it's a great place for gay people to settle down. Coming from the east coast, you'd be especially happy with house prices.

One big difference to get used to living in the Midwest, as I'm sure you noticed on your road trip, is that it's very spread out compared to the Northeast. It takes some driving to get from place to place. But within that environment, Iowa is in quite a good location. It's an easy drive to get to Omaha, Lincoln, Sioux Falls, the Twin Cities and Rochester, Madison, Chicago, St. Louis, and Kansas City, and traffic is hardly ever an issue.

I do get very bored of cornfields, there are some truly scary suburban Des Moines moms, and I miss living in the Twin Cities sometimes, but Iowa has been a great place to live for me.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-29-2012, 09:46 AM
 
1,509 posts, read 2,057,399 times
Reputation: 2592
"I've always wanted to live in a place that's less urbanized, but still reasonably tolerant of diverse peoples."

I'm glad you enjoyed your visit here! Steel03 gave you a great description of Iowa. I live in Cedar Rapids and work in Iowa City, moving here 18 years ago from Los Angeles. I am not gay, but have a couple of gay friends. For the most part, I think Iowans are very tolerant and respectful of diversity. It's more of a live and let live attitude here.

Last edited by ennaf; 07-29-2012 at 09:55 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-29-2012, 10:32 AM
 
8,671 posts, read 8,851,169 times
Reputation: 7215
Quote:
Originally Posted by iagal View Post
"I've always wanted to live in a place that's less urbanized, but still reasonably tolerant of diverse peoples."

I'm glad you enjoyed your visit here! Steel03 gave you a great description of Iowa. I live in Cedar Rapids and work in Iowa City, moving here 18 years ago from Los Angeles. I am not gay, but have a couple of gay friends. For the most part, I think Iowans are very tolerant and respectful of diversity. It's more of a live and let live attitude here.
I agree with this. I am not gay, but also have many gay friends. Pride Fest last month in Des Moines was an absolute blast and the parade was also fun. Where else do you see a float with guys dancing in their Calvins shooting confetti and glitter from a cannon? Yes there were a few anti-gay protesters but everyone just ignored them, as they should
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-29-2012, 02:18 PM
 
1,911 posts, read 3,144,875 times
Reputation: 910
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElleTea View Post
I agree with this. I am not gay, but also have many gay friends. Pride Fest last month in Des Moines was an absolute blast and the parade was also fun. Where else do you see a float with guys dancing in their Calvins shooting confetti and glitter from a cannon? Yes there were a few anti-gay protesters but everyone just ignored them, as they should
While it has come a long way, comments like this embody what people in Iowa still think about gay men...all are super flamboyant divas and act a certain way. It's simply not true, but someone in Iowa still might be surprised if they met a "non stereotypical" gay man. It hasn't quite gotten past this idea that all gay men probably act like Richard Simmons.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-29-2012, 02:49 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis
1,704 posts, read 2,626,829 times
Reputation: 2325
Oh here we go. Try to ignore RonnieJonez, he's a bit of a grandstander. He hasn't realized no one takes him seriously yet.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-29-2012, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
2,401 posts, read 3,542,391 times
Reputation: 1433
Ronnie is in our heads again! Amazing!!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-30-2012, 12:13 AM
 
Location: Savannah GA
13,094 posts, read 15,900,406 times
Reputation: 9139
I drove across Iowa for the first time last summer on a return trip from Montana to Georgia. The scenery was amazing! I've never seen so much corn in my life, and it was lush and green last year. Those giant windmills weren't too much to look at -- kinda creepy. But the rest of the state was surprisingly scenic, unlike much of the Midwest (Illinois -- yuck!)

Here's one thing I noticed: all the Iowa cities we passed through felt MUCH larger than they actually are, especially Des Moines. I couldn't believe it was a metro of barely 500,000 -- not much bigger than Savannah, GA where I live.

Any theories on why Iowa cities FEEL bigger than they are? Is it because there's so much corn in between?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-30-2012, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Sioux Falls, SD area
2,955 posts, read 4,371,041 times
Reputation: 4888
Quote:
Originally Posted by Newsboy View Post
I drove across Iowa for the first time last summer on a return trip from Montana to Georgia. The scenery was amazing! I've never seen so much corn in my life, and it was lush and green last year. Those giant windmills weren't too much to look at -- kinda creepy. But the rest of the state was surprisingly scenic, unlike much of the Midwest (Illinois -- yuck!)

Here's one thing I noticed: all the Iowa cities we passed through felt MUCH larger than they actually are, especially Des Moines. I couldn't believe it was a metro of barely 500,000 -- not much bigger than Savannah, GA where I live.

Any theories on why Iowa cities FEEL bigger than they are? Is it because there's so much corn in between?
Simply because in the midwest, there is so much open land outside of our cities that it's much less expensive to build out instead of inside the city and up. The new outer subburbs will gobble up lots of land for their malls and chain stores as well as larger lots for the suburban homes.

Good example and maybe on the extreme side is the square miles within the city limits of Sioux Falls SD vs San Francisco CA. Of the 2 SF's, Sioux Falls with a current city only population of approx. 160,000 is the same size and will soon be (if it isn't already) actually larger than San Francisco with a population of over 800,000. Granted, San Francisco is known for it's building on top of one another more than most cities, but it helps make a point.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-30-2012, 08:50 AM
 
11,015 posts, read 21,564,064 times
Reputation: 10641
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonnieJonez View Post
While it has come a long way, comments like this embody what people in Iowa still think about gay men...all are super flamboyant divas and act a certain way. It's simply not true, but someone in Iowa still might be surprised if they met a "non stereotypical" gay man. It hasn't quite gotten past this idea that all gay men probably act like Richard Simmons.
Oh please! You need to start moving away from this firm belief that no matter what Iowans are ignorant on all "civilized" aspects of humanity. The Chicago gay pride parade is exactly like that poster stated, and this is coming from a gay person.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Iowa
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top