Words & Deeds

‘Walmart opened a new store’: Two Idaho cities make Money’s 2019 ‘Best Places to Live’

Start buying rounds of $1 cocktails at Applebee’s, Meridian residents. It’s time to celebrate!

After finishing No. 46 last year on Money’s list of the “Best Places to Live in America,” big-headed Boise is nowhere to be found in the newest rankings, which were released this week.

But guess who finished No. 9 on the list of 100 places? Meridian.

It’s “one of the fastest growing cities in the nation,” the personal finance website noted. Money also observed that — with home ownership at 72 percent — “people seem to settle down” in Meridian.

Of course people do! After all, as Money bragged near the top of the write-up, “Walmart opened a new store in the city in 2017, and is one of the city’s largest employers.” Yeah, baby! That’s how you hit the top 10 best places to live!

I’m just teasing, Meridian. You owned Boise.

Admit it, though. Touting Walmart basically eviscerated the article’s credibility and waters down your drinks.

Also, did you notice who squeaked in near the bottom of the list at No. 93?

Idaho Falls.

Our humble neighbors to the east didn’t get any description, though, other than a few statistics.

Instead, they got a photo of a massive moose sculpture in town.

Either way, it’s all enough to give any kombucha-swilling, North End snowflake an inferiority complex. (By the way, I had a total blast at the recent Hyde Park Street Fair.) This marks the second time in a month that Boise has been left at the altar for other Idaho cities. Rexburg was just named the best college town in Idaho. (It must have been Idaho Falls’ proximity to super-cool Rexburg that caught the eye of Money.)

Ah, but here’s the thing. Boise was not eligible for Money’s “Best Places to Live” list in 2019. Among the rules used by Money? “Places that made the list last year were not included in this year’s ranking.”

(Ridiculous, right? Maybe that’s why Meridian was absent from the 2018 list, but ranked No. 48 in 2017.)

Bottom line, Meridian suckas? Prepare to be crushed by the return of Boise in 2020!

By then, we’re hoping to even have a Taco Johns like you do. That’ll give the editors at Money something to crow about.

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Michael Deeds is an entertainment reporter and columnist at the Idaho Statesman. Since joining the newsroom as an intern in 1991, he has been a sportswriter and sports columnist, features editor and entertainment editor. Deeds also co-hosts “The Other Studio,” a one-hour music show, at 8 p.m. Sundays on 94.9 FM The River.