Why We Love the Midwest | Midwest Living

Why We Love the Midwest

Our Facebook fans posted hundreds of responses when we asked what they love about Midwest states. Here's a sampling of their comments!
  • What we love about Illinois

    "Chicago deep-dish pizza." — Cindi Remington Peterson

    "The diversity. There is everything from farmland to the city of Chicago to a national forest. We are bordered by the great Mississippi and Ohio rivers. We have the best presidential museum in the Lincoln library and museum." — Deb Kuster

    "Starved Rock State Park, Galena and Chicago." — Terri Gordy

    "The scenery and wildlife of Southern Illinois, especially the Shawnee National Forest (beautiful during the fall with leaves changing colors)." — Therese Sisney

    "Garden of the Gods!" — Michele Fouts

    "Great places to shop (small towns and large cities) ... great food, all while enjoying great Midwesterners!" — Melissa Nix

    "Wine trail and the River Road in fall." — Betty White

    "Moline and John Deere!" — Jennifer McNally

    Pictured: Millennium Park in Chicago.

  • What we love about Indiana

    "Sunrises and sunsets over the cornfields." — Nikki Street-Hall

    "Autumn, festivals, Brown County, all the lakes, Hoosier hospitality, home cookin'. And did I say autumn already? :)" — Amanda Spencer Ricks

    "Parke County." — Karen Hicks

    "A person can experience almost everything. Rolling hills in the southern area; shoreline and Amish in the northern area; bluffs, canoeing, hiking in the western area; antiquing and Route 40 in the eastern area; fantastic Indianapolis downtown in the central. Wineries, state parks, museums. So many options, so little time. I love my Indiana." — Lee Ann Hutson

    "Indiana Dunes State Park." — Sheryl Kleinau Keller

    "The delicious food from independent restaurants and cute antiques and vintage stores in small towns all over Indiana!" — Mitzi Chafin Adkinson

    "The four seasons (I could do without the cold weather though), the Indy 500, high school and IU football, and basketball, John Mellencamp and the people! Plus, it's home. There is more than corn in Indiana." — Tammy Baker Dull

    "The Blueberry Festival in Plymouth!" — Tammy Warnick

    Pictured: Brown County State Park.

  • What we love about Iowa

    "Great state fair and lots of other outdoor activities!" — Kathy Nielson

    "The smells of the rich black soil in the spring ... tractors in the fields ... the friendly small town we live in ... the quiet ... the heat of summer and the colors of fall ... the fluff of snow in winter ... the smell of the air when you return from vacation somewhere else ... cows grazing in the field." — Gordon and Linda Dornink

    "Wide-open spaces, the velvety look of a soybean field, rhubarb crisp in spring, Drake Relays, watching storm clouds roll in and pile up from miles away, Sterzing's potato chips and ham salad sandwiches, my mom's garden, my people." — Sarah Kirtene

    "The variety in the weather, colors of the fields, trees, landscapes (hilly and flat)." — Cindra Goodburn

    "I love their great antiques shops!" — Lisa Rakowski

    "Photographing bald eagles along the Mississippi River." — Frank Angileri

    "Clear Lake and Blue Bunny ice cream." — Tima Waterworth Wiersma

    "The good-hearted, educated and hard-working people, the way everything looks and smells when it's green and growing, our history and traditions, football, politics, fairs and festivals. Iowa!" — Kelly Harward Elseman

    Pictured: Rolling fields near the Amana Colonies.

  • What we love about Kansas

    "The beautiful rolling Flint Hills and the wonderful hard-working farmers that sustain our nation and the world.'' — Dellene Williamson

    "Being snack in the middle of the continental United States." — Loretta Smith Klose

    "The beautiful sunsets. The fields of golden wheat in the summer. The sound and excitement of tractors and combines all in a rush to get their fields cut in the summer. The wild sunflowers that grow along the roadside in the late summer and early fall. Walking into the local small-town donut shop and seeing the old farmers talking over coffee. I love this state!" — Cristy Harder

    "The wonderful community of small farmers, the vibe on Mass in Lawrence on a spring Saturday afternoon, the way all of the wild grasses turn gold in the fall, the big beautiful stars on a crisp winter night, spending the 4th of July in Wamego." — Joann Gough-Stallbaumer

    "Every day is a new day of weather. From 70 to 30 in 24 hours. :)" — Sherrie Hess

    "It is home. BBQ in the Kansas City area. The Flint Hills. Being able to see for miles in every direction. Wind. Thunderstorms. Monument Rocks near Hays. Camping at Pomona State Park. Four distinct seasons (though I would like more snow)." — Kristi Tourville-Poquette

    "The wonderful people and wide-open spaces!" — Pat Veesart

    Pictured: Summer in the Flint Hills.

  • What we love about Michigan

    "The Detroit Institute of Art, Ann Arbor, Lake Michigan, Lake Superior, pasties and using your hand as a map." — Valerie Eninsche

    "The scenery! The lakes, trees and green grass in the summer; the vivid leaf colors in the fall (along with the crisp nights!); beautiful snowfalls in the winter; the vivid green emerging in the spring." — Mary Stevens

    "Mackinac Island and the slow ferry boat." — Jacqueline Davis

    "Oh, so hard to pick. The Great Lakes, the rugged beauty of the U.P. where I live (Keweenaw Peninsula). Or the Red Wings, Lions and Tigers!" — Cindy Barrios Figures

    "The Soo Locks, freighter-watching, the lakes, rivers, lighthouses (especially Whitefish Point) and Mackinac Bridge. There isn't enough room to list everything. Michigan has something for everyone. Can't forget Frankenmuth." — April Bigham Weldy

    "The sand dunes and the wineries." — Andrea Wikel

    "Coastline, miles and miles of beautiful coastline and the water that goes with it!" — Janet Kurkowski

    Pictured: Grand Haven State Park in southwest Michigan.

  • What we love about Minnesota

    "Walleyes!" — Jane P. Snyder

    "The trees, the smell of fall and the melting snow in the spring. The smell of sweet grass after a summer rain shower. A hazy sunrise. The reflection of the sunset on any lake. This is my home. I love Minnesota." — Nicollet Rodenborg

    "Norwegians!" — Sarah Elizabeth

    "Everything! So many lakes to fish and play on. Such beauty. Two of my favorite things, though, are Duluth and the glorious North Shore." — Mary Christopherson

    "Beautiful, amazing accents, don't ya know?" — Rose Meldrum

    "Just being there brings such peacefulness to me. The loons, lakes, sunsets and tranquility that the Park Rapids area brings any time of year." — Kim Tarmann

    "It is a friendly, family-oriented place, and of course, the Mall of America, too!" — Connie Jackson Lombard

    "I've lived in Minnesota all my life. The best thing about it is the Up North resorts with lakes so clear you can see all the way to the bottom, fresh smells of abundant pines, Lake Superior, the rolling prairies and the Twin Cities area. Also, we have the world-renowned Mayo Clinic, along with the latest medical research being done at the University of Minnesota." — Tricia Burg

    Pictured: Gooseberry Falls State Park north of Duluth.

  • What we love about Missouri

    "Prairie in the north, mountains in the south, the big Missouri in the middle!" — Laura Edwards Hechler

    "Kansas City, the Katy Trail, all the wineries throughout the state, and the fact that I can live in the woods but am less than an hour from KC and all its wonderful restaurants." — Neta Hamblen Davis

    "Crystal-clear waters of the streams and rivers of the Ozarks ... and Springfield's Cashew Chicken!" — Kathy Stephens

    "The beautiful state parks. Trail of Tears near Cape Girardeau is one of my favorites!" — Linda LaBrier Wall

    "First, we love our family there. Second: Branson and all the wonderful shows. Third: The Arch in St. Louis; we went up it last August. Awesome experience." — Ruthann Sterenberg

    "So many free venues: zoo, art museum, Forest Park, lots to do just in St. Louis. Not to mention the beautiful fall and spring we enjoy. Easy access to many other locations. Great place to live." — Mary Lou Farrow

    "The best baseball fans: St. Louis Cardinals fans!" — Janis Taylor Hall

    "Missouri State Penitentiary — the tours are unbeatable!" — Sarah Stroesser Alsager

    Pictured: Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

  • What we love about Nebraska

    "Strong family values, small communities, strong work ethics, nature and simple pleasures of life. Corn fields and sunsets." — Judy Beach

    "Stuhr Museum in Grand Island, Pioneer Village in Minden, Hastings Museum (the birthplace of Kool-Aid!). Knowing you can always count on your neighbors. Kids being able to ride their bikes to the library, the Cornhuskers, some of the best beef in the world, Willa Cather. Knowing that no matter where I roam, my heart and soul aren't at peace until I'm home. There is no place like Nebraska!" — Nancy Johnson

    "Omaha zoo." — Terri Gordy

    "The smell of alfalfa along I-80 and the sunsets on the plains in Southwest Nebraska ... nothing is prettier!" — Dee Dugdale

    "The Sandhill crane migration in late winter and early spring!" — Kathy Valcq Kinnamon

    "Everything! The landscape: rolling hills of pasture and cornfields, beautiful rivers. Eagles and other wildlife. The weather, Husker football, the people. Oh, and the great state parks like Fort Robinson, Johnson Lake and Chadron. It is a great state to raise a family, and I would never, never live anywhere else!" — Leann Friesen Smith

    "Corn and more corn." — Chet Vier

    Pictured: Sandhill crane migration along the Platte River.

  • What we love about North Dakota

    "Family stories and roots ... the clear, blue skies and open spaces." — Constance Hagen Johnson

    "The beautiful rolling hills and wide-open spaces. The stunning sunsets that stop you in your tracks. The lovely, light-until-10 summer evenings. Family and Christian values. The starry skies that never end. Being able to see the stars. :) Waking up to nothing but the wind blowing through the grass and trees and the birds chirping. The peace and quiet ... the room to breathe. North Dakota is pure beauty!" — Kathryn Christensen

    "The bison and the badlands." — C.J. Pfeifer

    "International Peace Garden at the Canadian border." — Marcia Lamb Teter

    "Theodore Roosevelt Park, of course, but the Enchanted Highway and Medora are my favs." — Leia Thomas Ellis

    "The resilient, hard-working people that are always ready to help friends and family in need." — Sarah Mudder

    "The beautiful sky at night. The way the wind whistles when it blows. Such fond memories from my childhood." — Karen Peltier

    Pictured: Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

  • What we love about Ohio

    "All the parks in our backyard ... various Metro Parks, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Hocking Hills. It's a beautiful state." — Mandy Anderson

    "The chili five ways. Yum!" — Roxanne Muchko

    "Lake Erie. How awesome it is to live so close to a Great Lake and to take advantage of its many amenities!" — Adrienne Zedella

    "We moved from California to the small Ohio town my husband was born and raised in September 2010 after retiring,. I love the slower pace, the true seasons; people seem to be so nice and actually talk to you! The foods back here are wonderful! The rides through all the countryside, and I love the Amish Country!" — Ginny Sue Fisher

    "Hocking Hills, Marietta and Cleveland." — Teri Rotondo Tracey

    "Football Saturdays tailgating at the 'Shoe' in Columbus! AppleFest in Lebanon, Oktoberfest Zincinnati and the farmlands of northwest Ohio!" — Jayne Gerdeman Homsher

    "The small towns (coffee shops!) and old one-room schoolhouses." — Danae Gillespie

    Pictured: Put-in-Bay on Lake Erie.

  • What we love about South Dakota

    "Everything but the weather!" — Lesa Wilson Weber

    "The Black Hills and driving the beautiful roads through them, Custer State Park, Iron Mountain Road, Spearfish Canyon, the friendly people who still wave as you pass each other on the road :), going to see my family, the gorgeous wide-open spaces, the beautiful sunsets and evenings! There truly is just something special about South Dakota." — Kathryn Christensen

    "Mount Rushmore! We absolutely love visiting." — Jennifer McNally Rogers

    "Sioux Falls is surprisingly cosmopolitan." — Terri Gordy

    "Beautiful scenery and bison." — Katie Grossart

    "Friendly people, the Falls of the Big Sioux, vast prairies and open skies, low taxes, great schools, the list could go on forever." — Lori Lind Eckrich

    "The hike to Mount Harney, the tallest point east of the Rockies." — Joni Oros

    "My mother, who passed away in '05, would say how clear the sky is at night." — Cheryl A. Holub

    Pictured: View from the Needles Highway in Custer State Park.

  • What we love about Wisconsin

    "The four seasons in 5 minutes!" — Kathy Zahn

    "Friendly people, real cheese (curds!), supper clubs, brandy drinks, great fishing and hunting, chili, brats, Miller beer and Harley Davidson!" — Raschell Celleste

    "Door County, definitely." — Judi Peters Wooster

    "What isn't there to like about Wisconsin? The fall beauty of the state, waves rolling in on Green Bay during a warm summer night, the plentiful farmers markets starting in the spring, and the way the full moon reflects on a fresh snowfall." — Alecia Sadowski

    "The beauty of living and, of course, playing in the North Woods, ...Villas County, Eagle River." — Theresa Poole

    "I like the diversity. In this one state you'll find backwoods camping and boating; hunting and fishing; water parks, resorts, natural beauty and shopping at the Dells; Packers, Brewers and Badgers; museums (including the world-famous Mustard Museum!), Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesen and other FLW landmark homes and churches; great shopping, breweries, wineries, cheese and dairy specialties; big-city bustle surrounded by quaint small towns and bed-and-breakfasts; and four distinct seasons, each with its own beauty." — Kelly Kornaus

    "Zestar apples!" — Lisa Rakowski

    Pictured: Kayaking near Minocqua in Wisconsin's North Woods.

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