March 31, 2011

Forbes: "25 Best Cities For An Active Retirement."

#1, Madison, Wisconsin.

84 comments:

Pastafarian said...

I guess the idea is that you MUST remain active there, lest you freeze to death, or get ripped apart by rampaging mobs of filthy hippies.

TWM said...

I don't know. I'm thinking if you are a conservative this might be the last place you would want to retire, lest as Pastafarian says, you get ripped apart by rampaging mobs of filthy hippies, err, I mean union protestors.

traditionalguy said...

After Althouse has spent years of travelogue photo blogging of every fun thing to do in and around Madison, well yes.

Issob Morocco said...

Was that active or activist retirement?

Lincolntf said...

Eclectic list with some strange juxtapositions.

Billings MT at 5, Ann Arbor at 6. Lexington, KY at 10 and New York City at 11. How D.C. got on there at all is beyond me. Fairfax, sure, but the District?

shoutingthomas said...

You've got to be kidding me.

You've got arthritis and you're going to live through Wisconsin winters?

No way.

MadisonMan said...

So Doctor availability, volunteerism and bike friendliness were considered.

And yet DC still makes the list? Odd.

Dale said...

SERIOUSLY!?!?!

A place where even the writer of this blog is threatened along with her husband by union thugs associated with the police?

A place where disrespect for publice property is at a national high?

A place where people freely compare the democratically elected governor to Adolph "killer of 12 million+" Hitler?

REALLY?!?!

A place where judges make political decisions with no legal precedence or law and threatens those who disagree with her?

A place where police officers threaten business people who won't post a pro-union sign in their window? Where you should be able to depend on the US Justice Department to step in on this, but we all know the shitheads that run that . . .


Fuck that shit! You Madisonites are so fucked up you can't tell which side your assholes are on anymore


#1 in fucked up yes - safety and freedom - hell NO!

Fred4Pres said...

Hmmm, maybe Judge Sumi should be considering that.

traditionalguy said...

But Forbes' List was created back before The Sumo Judge started as the new ruler of Wisconsin. Forbes had better be careful with their claiming a list has been made or The Sumo will use her mighty TRO move to muscle them out of the ring and declare that this List does not exist.

Pastafarian said...

OK, I just made it all the way through this list.

This list should make the top ten list of poorly compiled lists, right up there with that "greatest rock guitarists" list that included 3 punk guitarists that use the instrument as percussion, before it got to Jimmie Paige.

See, most people want to retire where it's warm. Two cities in WI; but only one in Florida. Almost none of the 25 in the south.

And Washington DC, the worst place I've ever been in terms of crime, at number 22. That's comical.

I'm a Red Wings fan, and I go to Detroit all the time. When I drove through Washington DC, I had a gun on my lap, the doors locked, and a grim look of impending murder on my face the whole way. I drove through miles of the worst neighborhoods I've ever been in.

Yeah, great place to retire. Jesus Christ on horseback.

Jim Ryan said...

Dale, you're either a moby or you're getting as screwed up as they want you to get. (Hint: How screwed up did Mrs. Iselin want Raymond to get?)

rhhardin said...

If you have a computer, everywhere has an active retirement.

Titus said...

Not in the months from December to March, unless you enjoy really really cold weather.

Also, have you seen some of the pics of the people in Madison Althouse has on her website?

The place is a major hefty hideaway city.

You can't swing a cat without hitting an Edna Turnblad clone.

edutcher said...

Funny how most of the places are Lefty-infested satraps.

PS Low crime and high doctors (at least before the death panels move in) make sense, but what does bicycling have to do with it?

(especially if your knees are shot)

What does volunteering have to do with being a major criterion of being active? So you can hang out with all the other over-the-hill commies like William Ayers?

The Blonde wants a place where she can swim and dunk her tootsies in the warm salt water once in a while. Failing that, someplace warm and dry with a pool.

Meade said...

Oh come on, Dale. Calm yourself.

Wisconsin has an open carry law. As long as you know how to defend yourself, there is no better place on earth to live. Retire here, move here, vote here. Keep a low profile and everyone will assume you agree with them politically.

Other places are wonderful to visit, but Forbes is right - Madison Wisconsin is the best place to live if you're active and retired.

pbAndj said...

They forgot to note that it's inhabited by chaotic mobsters. Don't they read Meadhouse?

Meade said...

Most of the chaotic mobsters were bused in from Chicago. For the most part, they've now gone somewhere else. The protests here in Madison are continuing to wind down. Paradise is returning to this fine city.

Lincolntf said...

Get ready for the promotional campaigns:

"Spend your Golden Years in Madison, Land of Whine and Cheese."

"Madison, We're Always Screaming,
So Leave Your Hearing-Aid At Home!"

"Move to Madison, Neighborhoods With Police Protection Still Available!!!"

retire05 said...

Did anyone notice that almost the entire list was made up of the most liberal areas in our nation? Would that have been done on purpose?

Retire to Madison? I think not. When energy costs "necessarily skyrocket" due to Obama's energy policies, those that retired to any of those cold weather cities will be calling U-Haul to move to the South post haste.

What a bogus list. Seems it was designed for lefties that are willing to volunteer for socialist project.

Sorry, Meade, but compared to Madison, y'all make the nutcases in Austin, Texas look sane.

Shouting Thomas said...

Other places are wonderful to visit, but Forbes is right - Madison Wisconsin is the best place to live if you're active and retired.

Caveat: If you can afford to live somewhere else, like Florida, during the last half of November, December, January, February and the first half of March.

Arthritis sufferers will be driven to tears by chronic pain by Madison winters.

TWM said...

"Keep a low profile and everyone will assume you agree with them politically."

See, that alone, to me anyway, would make it an incredibly frustrating and, in the long term, depressing place to live out my retirement years.

Move to Nashville. We don't have open carry but that just makes it more fun guessing who is carrying or not. Plus the weather is much better, there's no state income tax, and if you stay away from Memphis and a few other counties, it's very welcoming to conservatives.

themightypuck said...

People love best of lists so they make powerful eyeball grabs. I still get suckered in but I don't really think there is anything different between the extant list and a Rick Astley video.

Coketown said...

Boulder is #2. Considering they have a no-growth policy, it would be interesting to see what happens to the young and poor once a flood of rich retirees moves in. And I don't see how Seattle is better than any other city as far as being active.

I think all these "top 25 cities" lists are done by the same guy, who's only ever been to 25 cities, and he just rearranges them to fit the theme of the list. "Top 25 cities whose names look like each other: #1 Dallas #2 The Dalles."

Meade said...

And sure it's cold in the winter. Winters are meant to be cold. But, unless you're a real wimp, it's not that cold. The trick is to keep moving - hence the term active retirement.

Spring here is fantastic. So is fall. And except for a few short days in July - unlike Lexington KY, etc. - one can breath fresh cool not-too-humid Wisconsin air here in the summertime. Delightful.

rhhardin said...

Where do retired mosquitos go, is the question.

MadisonMan said...

but only one in Florida

It is very difficult to be active in Florida during the 8+ months of summer there. If you're not sweating with the oldies, you're being struck by lightning. Who wants active to mean walking around an indoor shopping mall? There are usually only about 5 or 6 days per year in Madison when it's too hot to do anything outside.

The only lousy time of year to live in Madison is mid-March to mid-April on those days when it's cloudy and cold, like this coming Sunday.

Meade said...

Retired mosquitos fly south. To Ohio.

Shouting Thomas said...

Spring here is fantastic. So is fall. And except for a few short days in July - unlike Lexington KY, etc. - one can breath fresh cool not-too-humid Wisconsin air here in the summertime. Delightful.

You could say the same thing about Woodstock, and you'd be right.

But, the winters are becoming a physical punishment that I can't endure much longer. And I know plenty of fellow Woodstockers who are suffering the same thing.

I won't be here for many more winters. Florida or the Philippines.

Lincolntf said...

I would love to play the "my weather is superior"-game but it has been so crappy this Spring I don't have the spirit. That said, I live in the Piedmont region of NC (after moving from MA a few years ago, so the winters seem tropical), a place well known for it's great agricultural climate. It ain't half bad for humans either.

pbAndj said...

"Most of the chaotic mobsters were bused in from Chicago."

And yet the Meadehouse threat level remains high (orange? or red?):

"Wisconsin has an open carry law. As long as you know how to defend yourself, there is no better place on earth to live."

Presumably gun play is required to fend off the home grown hippies (or zombies?).

Anyway, it's nice to know that at least part of Meadehouse loves the product of ultra-lib governance in action. It seems like I nice place to be fully dedicated to the theory of conservative principles (or con-lib/lib-con/(un-il)lib principles).

Meade: having his cake and eating it too.

Meade said...

Yeah. Not only that, but the icing on the cake I'm eating is out. of. this. world!

Don't Tread 2012 said...

@Meade

"As long as you know how to defend yourself, there is no better place on earth to live."

You mean like, 'knitting needles' defense tactics? Assault with dentures? Capsacin-loaded bingo card daubers?

I can think of a few places that would be better than Madison, no offense. I appreciate your native pride, but, really.

Older folks do much better in warmer climes. Winters here in Buffalo are on par with those in Madison and are very long.

I guess as long as you maintain an active lifestyle, you can thrive pretty much anywhere.

Joaquin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joaquin said...

Really?
I perused that list and didn't come up with one city I would remotely consider.

NYC, San Fran. Washington DC! Oh yeah, those make sense!
I also like how folks in Madison make a big deal about greenery sprouting........just now. Here in NC, spring hit a month ago and we play golf 12 months a year.

MadisonMan said...

Winters here in Buffalo are on par with those in Madison and are very long.

Partly true. But when I moved here from someplace like Buffalo -- but not so snowy, I was astounded at how sunny it is here in the winter.

When you grow up downwind of the Great Lakes, you just assume that winters are dull, grey, flurry-ish places. Then you move upwind of the lakes, and suddenly the cold days are sunny and BRIGHT! That made a huge huge difference to me.

reader_iam said...

My first reaction was pure snark-quip:

Forbes: "25 Best Cities For An Active Retirement""

Absolutely: You can spend all day protesting at the Capitol and meet all kinds of interesting people from all over the place!

edutcher said...

Meade said...

Yeah. Not only that, but the icing on the cake I'm eating is out. of. this. world!

Isn't this supposed to be a respectable blog?

Don't Tread 2012 said...

@Madison

"Partly true. But when I moved here from someplace like Buffalo -- but not so snowy..."

Sigh.

Yes, we get our share of the white stuff. Nothing like, say, Oswego or Syracuse, NY, that makes us look like pikers in terms of snowfall most winters.

I do concur with your assessment in terms of clouds/gray days, as we are in-line with the westerlies crossing Lake Erie. When conditions are right, we get what we know as 'lake-effect' snows/precipitation.

Hence, this is the main reason you enjoy more days of sunshine. You don't have a cloud-making body of water to your west.

The upside to Lake Erie being so close is, it tends to help keep our temps a little more moderate in winter. I think your temps are generally colder on average.

KenK said...

High taxes, cold weather, and full of kooks. Shows how useful Forbes magazine ratings are.

DADvocate said...

Too cold.

Lombardi Chick said...

Seattle is number four? Just yesterday, I heard of some other publication ranking Seattle as the third "most miserable" city in the U.S. - I guess it all depends on the criteria you're using.

High cost of living/real estate, gas taxes through the roof, no hope of ever seeing a Republican in a position of power (no matter how dissatisfied people are with Democrats), the view out the window (rain, gray, rain, gray, rain - whoa...what is that big, yellow ball in the sky?)...but hey, how about those bike trails?

I'd consider moving back to Wisconsin one day, but these tantrum-throwing leftists are a serious deterrent.

themightypuck said...

I nominate Pasadena, CA since affordability is obviously not a criterion.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Could care less. The way the country is headed the chances most of us have for retirement is somewhere between slim and none.

chickelit said...

Boulder is #2. Considering they have a no-growth policy, it would be interesting to see what happens to the young and poor once a flood of rich retirees moves in. And I don't see how Seattle is better than any other city as far as being active.

I agree with that sentiment. There's something perverse about aging hipster liberals moving back to university cities to relive their youth, meanwhile driving out the younger students in the process.

chickelit said...

If you want affordable housing and good weather, try Oceanside, CA.


wv = "outtated" Meade's blog, due to lack of updates, is looking a bit "outtated"

Econophile said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Econophile said...

Meade said: Keep a low profile and everyone will assume you agree with them politically.

That's certainly been true in my experience, but I've always considered it to reflect what's truly wrong about Madison: This assumption that there is no other acceptable way to think.

When they presume you're with them politically, they'll spew out the nastiest, thoughtless, most offensive diatribes. So on the one hand, it's interesting to hear what these rigid, parochial "Progressives" really think. But on the other, they're essentially calling you a heartless SOB--and worse--to your face. Constantly. It's disturbing and very uncomfortable.

hombre said...

For the most part Forbes evidently means by "active retirement" shovelling snow, slogging through mud, or, as Pastafarian points out, dodging moonbats.

I have sons in Portland and Salem and in-laws in Eugene. Portland is uber-liberal, but a great city for younger people who have no need to see the sun for 8 months a year (28 straight days of rain this month). Salem has the same climate and very few other attractions besides the nitwits in the legislature and the Governor's office. Eugene is like Portland, but substitute "moonbats" for "younger people" in my Portland comment. It is also the grass pollen capital of the world.

Tucson used to be great, but has so much concrete now that it is hotter than balls day and night six months out of the year. There is usually no place better to winter though.

Forbes is dreaming if they think people want to retire to big cities.

Dale said...

Jim, thanks for the moby tag, but I have posted here for years - at least 4-5 - but you shouldn't be bothered with looking it up, what with your probable ADHD and all.

Meade - I was in Madison as a kid visiting relatives a couple times 20 years ago. It was beautiful as I remember it. You said:

Keep a low profile and everyone will assume you agree with them politically.


Question: Why would you want to live your life like that? Sorry - not me.

So, Jim, if you still are here after 5 sentences, here is the problem with what happened/is happening in Madison: that disregard for law, public property, and civil discourse (calling the democratically elected governor "Hitler") - that shit they're doing and worse, allowing - spreads. Unchecked shut spreads.

And Madison is overflowing in bad shit. And it's spreading.

Midwestern values on display?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

If by active you mean dodging dirty Hippies and hiding from Union thugs who want to blackmail you.....


Sure...that's activity.

:-D

Trooper York said...

Looks like Meade picked a great place to retire.

SteveR said...

I guess if your retiring in your early fifties with a nice pension from a public sector job, these places might be just fine in many ways. My wife is a real estate agent here in southern New Mexico and 99% of the traffic is coming here from places like those on that list to retire, not the other way around. Warmer and less expensive.

bagoh20 said...

Did you ever wonder why the Eskimos never moved south? There is someplace for everyone.

Lincolntf said...

They talked about leaving, but just weren't innuit.

Lincolntf said...

@Revenant

Per the link, Wisconsin students are barred from offending people on the Internet.
I'm getting the frequent impression that the real Wisconsion Idea is: "Sit Down and Shut Up, We'll Tell You What To Say And You'll Pay Us For The Pleasure."


"...No person may, with
intent to harass, annoy or offend another person,
send a message to the person on an electronic mail
or other computerized communication system and in
that message use any obscene, lewd or profane
language or suggest any lewd or lascivious act...."


I guess I understand wanting that sort of rule in a kindergarten or grammar school, but these people are American adults (to one extent or another). Get the fuck out of their conversations.

madAsHell said...

I'm still amazed that such lists can sell magazines.

I see Seattle at number 4. I've lived in Seattle most my life. People move here in the summer time, and think they've discovered Shangra-La (sp?).

Some time in October they start to wonder. Where'd the sun go? Lot's of people buy a wide-spectrum light fixture to help them cope, then they start looking for another place to live.

Oh, yeah....only n00bs, and tourists carry umbrellas.

Jim said...

Given that the vast majority of the places on that list are in cold climes, there is NO WAY that list was actually compiled by anyone over the age of 40.

Between being snowed in and frozen out for significant portions of the year, other commenters have already pointed out the various health risks involved in living in these conditions.

You're telling me that living in a warmer clime where you can get out and walk around the block every day is somehow worse than living in FARGO?

Please. They should be embarrassed. As should anyone taking this list even half-seriously.

ricpic said...

Billings, Montana at #5 is nuts. It's a big dusty cowtown in the flatter eastern part of Montana with neither aesthetic appeal or cultural amenities to recommend it. There are great towns in Montana to retire to - Bozeman, Helena, Missoula, Livingston - but not Billings.

Paddy O said...

Cuz old people love the cold!

chickelit said...

chickelit said...

wv = "outtated" Meade's blog, due to lack of updates, is looking a bit "outtated"

I stand corrected.

virgil xenophon said...

I'm ABSOLUTELY amazed that Sandy Eggo was TOTALLY left out--as were any number of SoCal places insofar "activity" bespeaks of a benign climate. For years I used to read about the fact that the SD climate means the need for pretty much only one grade of clothing year-round, etc. and that, plus relatively little rainfall (being a mediterranean coastal desert climate) means outdoor activities are avail year-round. And ski slopes are fine--but for the AVG. retiree? Right...this is a list catering to the sensibilities of the SWPL-listers.

shiloh said...

As long as AA remains in Madison ;) have no problem w/that "unbised" list.

ok, ok if a union bruhaha develops in another major college town, we'll let her relocate temporarily.

Let freedom ring ...

Joe said...

The most jarring one for me was San Jose. I've lived there and will very likely live there again. For financial reasons. It's a complete shit hole otherwise. (There are places NEAR San Jose that are nice, though you'd have to be pretty wealthy to afford them. Even then, they'd suck for retirement, active or otherwise.)

And note that these are all weighted toward people who like urban, often heavily urban, environments. Some of us don't.

Bruce Hayden said...

I was surprised that so many of the cities were out west. I agree with the poster who pointed out that a lot of those NW cities have abysmal weather much of the year. Of course, I am biased - I have spent most of my life where you have 300 days of sun, not 300 days of rain, a year. And, I mean real sun - one of the reasons I had problems living in D.C. was that you couldn't see stars at night. Ever. Besides the humidity that keeps you indoors for 4-5 months of the year.

I did agree with the 3 from Colorado - ignoring all the downsides of Boulder. But, Fort Collins/Loveland should rank above many of those chosen - it is/was a college town, has a reasonable climate, bike trails, etc. The cities have most of the advantages of Boulder w/o the disadvantages.

I do agree with ricpic that Billings is down there quite a ways when it comes to Montana - and I thought it interesting that the shot they showed appears to be from maybe around Glacier, which is across the state (and, Montana is one of the larger states to drive across - we are talking most of a day's travel here).

I didn't get the NYC/DC/SF choices. All are expensive, at a time when retirees are usually trying to conserve their money. Sure, if you have a couple extra million lying around, NYC might be a good place to retire. But for everyone else?

If the goal is physical fitness, I would surely dump those three. Well, at least NYC. What is there to do as exercise? Go to the gym? Just what I wanted to do - move somewhere just so I could get my exercise indoors.

Contrast this esp. with the cities out west - where there are things to do outdoors year round, and there is a huge amount of land to do it on. Ok, I will admit that things get a bit bleak in the late fall for a month or two in Colorado (and here in Northern Nevada) between summer sports and winter sports, unless you hunt (and if you don't, the hunters are one reason to be careful about where you go outdoors at that time of year). But for 10 or so months of the year, you can do things outdoors most days.

Phil 3:14 said...

"25 Best Cities for an Active Retirement"


If you're a teacher or union member

Trooper York said...

Plus I heard those Madison girls are easy.

Donald Douglas said...

Forbes must be joking, because it's just too funny!

LarsPorsena said...

Just about all of the 25 are college towns/state capitals. The quality of life can be directly attributable to the taxpayers in other parts of the state being forced to pump money into these locales. Nice quality for the 25 paid for by the folks who live in those not-so-desirable places.

SBVOR said...

NYC, San Francisco and D.C. are in the top 25? Really? Seriously?

Rename the article - Havens where "Progressives" can ride their bicycles and spew excess CO2 from their lungs.

I'm just glad my home -- Steamboat Springs, CO -- did NOT make the list. We're growing too fast as it is and FAR too many "Progressives" have come here.

William said...

What with global warming, the ice fishing and curling season now end in early May so Madison is no longer such a paradise for active retirees.....NYC is actually pretty good for retirees. It's a great walking city and, what with the squalor of the subway, walking is actively encouraged if your destination is within twenty blocks. That said, there are very few experiences in life more dispiriting than stepping into a puddle of slush and feeling the cold water slosh over the shoe and permeate between the toes. Winter sucks......Politically it's very liberal, but the world is filled with many things more interesting than politics. I personally would never like or dislike anyone because of their views on civil service pensions, and, anyway, it's an easy topic to avoid.

Lincolntf said...

"...and, anyway, it's an easy topic to avoid."

Not in Madison, where you get boycotted for NOT taking a side.

Steve Koch said...

Wisconsin is way too cold to live there in winter. The avg high temp in Jan is in the 20's. The avg high temp for Dec and Feb is in the low 30's. Even March and Nov sound kind of chilly with avg high temps in the mid 40s. That adds up to 5 months ranging from way too cold to chilly weather.

Of course that leaves you with 7 pretty decent months so maybe the trick is to get a house somewhere else to go to for the 5 cold months. If you get it somewhere nice like in the Caribbean, you can rent it out to tourists during the warm months and defray some or all of the additional housing costs incurred by having the second house.

I have the opposite problem, I have to find somewhere cooler in the summer. Personally, I like Oregon in the summer. The Pacific Coast is spectacular, the Columbia River Gorge is awesome, there are a lot of towering forests, and the Cascades are full of amazing rivers and waterfalls.

Near the town of Hood River is some of the best wind surfing in the world. Hood River doesn't get much rain in May, June, July, Aug, and Sept (in Oregon, if the rain gets to you, you can always drive east of the Cascades to stay dry in their rain shadow).

Portland is a cool town with a great train system if you don't want to drive in the city.

jimspice said...

Not for long.

reader_iam said...

The other thing is that if this country is, in fact, headed in the direction on which almost everyone seemingly agrees, it would be far more advantageous to live in warmer climes (though not the very farthest points south in this country, due to offsetting issues), based on growing seasons alone.

Right?

MarkW said...

Just about all of the 25 are college towns/state capitals. The quality of life can be directly attributable to the taxpayers in other parts of the state being forced to pump money into these locales. Nice quality for the 25 paid for by the folks who live in those not-so-desirable places.

True enough. But you should here some of the people here (in Ann Arbor) bitch and moan about the U not 'paying its share' and especially about it buying more property and taking it off the tax rolls. The thing, though, about living in a wealthy liberal enclave is that on social issues, I am a liberal, so that's good. And on economic issues, there is a relatively narrow scope for stupidity -- especially when the town is run by liberals who always have their neighborhood property values in mind.

PatCA said...

It looks a list for 25 Best Cities for an Active Liberal Retirement. That's fine, if it's your goal.

Alan said...

Active retirement = taxpayer-funded retirement?

BEK477 said...

Ann,
I beg to differ....

Charleston,SC
Ashville, NC
Singapore
Bali, Indonesia are all superior IMHO.

Russell said...

Who compiled this? Not one southern city? Where is Austin? 20,000 people (mostly from Cali.) are relocating to Texas every month, not to Wisconsin.

Russell said...

Who compiled this? Not one southern city? Where is Austin? 20,000 people (mostly from Cali.) are relocating to Texas every month, not to Wisconsin.

Little Towhee said...

Please go back to Wisconsin, all you folks who have come from there to invade my Southern state.

Sorry to say, but I have yet to meet a gentle and mannered person from Wisconsin that has come to reside in my home state.

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