When it comes to raising a family in one of the top 180 largest cities in the US, one city in Iowa stands above the rest of our area, and frankly...it's not very close.

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According to the 2022's Best & Worst Places to Raise a Family from WalletHub.com, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, among the best in the country, is ranked 28th out of the top 182 largest cities in the US. Cedar Rapids is ranked alongside other well know great communities like Omaha ranked 22nd, Lexington ranked 26th, and Charleston ranked 36th. In the article WalletHub says...

"With families in mind, WalletHub compared more than 180 U.S. cities based on 46 key metrics that consider essential family dynamics, such as the cost of housing, the quality of local school and health-care systems, and the opportunities for fun and recreation."

So why is Cedar Rapids ranked so highly for families? Well, it all has to do with saving money, according to the rankings Cedar Rapids is near the very top (ranked 7th) in affordability and is in the top 50 for health and safety. So what about some of the other cities near the Quincy/Hannibal Tri-State area? Des Moines, Iowa ranks 82nd, Chicago comes in at 110th place, Kansas City was ranked 80th (but the suburb of KC called Overland Park, Kansas ranked 2nd on the list behind only Freemont, California), and finally, St. Louis ranked near the very bottom coming in 160th.

I find these rankings fairly accurate from my own experiences spending time in these cities, I have only heard great things about Cedar Rapids, I lived in Chicago for years but it would be hard to raise a family there, Des Moines and KC both seem to me to be better family-friendly cities to raise a family than living in St. Louis, and apparently, I need to check out Overland Park, KS! To see the full list for yourself click here! 

LOOK: Here are the 50 best beach towns in America

Every beach town has its share of pluses and minuses, which got us thinking about what makes a beach town the best one to live in. To find out, Stacker consulted data from WalletHub, released June 17, 2020, that compares U.S. beach towns. Ratings are based on six categories: affordability, weather, safety, economy, education and health, and quality of life. The cities ranged in population from 10,000 to 150,000, but they had to have at least one local beach listed on TripAdvisor. Read the full methodology here. From those rankings, we selected the top 50. Readers who live in California and Florida will be unsurprised to learn that many of towns featured here are in one of those two states.

Keep reading to see if your favorite beach town made the cut.