The Hawkeye State earned some high praise as it cracked the U.S. News' annual Best States rankings this year, while another Tri-State appeared on the list as well!

Iowa placed #7 on U.S. News' Best States rankings in what was a really strong showing for the Midwest all around. Four Midwestern states made the top 10, with two placing in the top five. Ultimately, it was Utah and Washington that took the top two spots, respectively, with Utah being hailed for its financial stability and overall economy.

Photo Credit: U.S. News
Photo Credit: U.S. News

The metrics used to make this list are fascinating. Reading the comprehensive breakdown of Iowa was fascinating; it taught me a lot I didn't know about the state in which I live. To break thing down, here's where Iowa ranked in the major categories:

  • Crime & Corrections - 16th
  • Economy - 31st
  • Education - 13th
  • Fiscal Stability - 8th
  • Health Care - 22nd
  • Infrastructure - 11th
  • Natural Environment - 21st
  • Opportunity - 3rd

Wisconsin also made the top ten, placing behind Iowa on U.S. News' list at #8. Wisconsin's financial stability, education, and overall opportunity led to its high ranking.

Iowa's scorecard, which led to it being ranked as one of the ten best states in the U.S. Photo Credit: U.S. News
Iowa's scorecard, which led to it being ranked as one of the ten best states in the U.S. Photo Credit: U.S. News

Here's U.S. News' summation of the findings of their annual rankings:

Aside from Utah, two other states performed double duty with top performances in Best States categories: Hawaii (health care, natural environment) and New Hampshire (crime and correctionsopportunity) each had two No. 1 category finishes. Minnesota took the top spot in the infrastructure category, while Florida finished No. 1 in education amid controversy over recent policies championed by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, a potential presidential hopeful.

Since you can't have the good without the bad too, here are the bottom 10 states in the United States:

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50. Louisiana
49. Alaska
48. Mississippi
47. New Mexico
46. West Virginia
45. Arkansas
44. Alabama
43. Oklahoma
42. South Carolina
41. Michigan

For a full breakdown of the U.S. News' Best States rankings, visit their website. Click here to read specifically about Iowa.


Small Town Iowa: Road Trip to Pella - Photos

When you mention Pella, most people say "they have all the tulips right?" Where that would be correct, there is so much more to this town. Pella is also home to two manufacturing companies, a college, the largest working windmill in the U.S. and it's the boyhood home of the legendary Wyatt Earp. Now, let's go on a virtual tour of this excellent example of picturesque small-town Iowa.

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