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2 Minnesota cities are up for title of 'Best Midwestern Small Town'

There are 20 Midwestern towns up for the title.

Two Minnesota cities are in the running to be named the "Best Midwestern Small Town."

Grand Marais and Lanesboro are the two Minnesota cities on the USA Today's 10Best Reader's Choice poll of 20 Midwestern cities with populations under 10,000. The one that gets the most votes by April 24 at 11 a.m. will win the title.

The poll describes Grand Marais as "one of the nation's best art colonies" and the gateway to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. The North Shore town, which had a population of 1,351 in the 2010 Census, isn't a stranger to "best" lists. In 2015, it was voted Budget Travel's Coolest Small Town in America, the city's website says.

Lanesboro, which is located in the Root River Valley in southeastern Minnesota, was also touted for its outdoor activities and cultural attractions, including the Root River Bike Trail, historic architecture and numerous bed and breakfasts. It has a population of 754.

As of Monday morning, Charlevoix, Michigan, was in the lead. Grand Marais was at No. 3, while Lanesboro was at No. 17.

Other cities on the list include:

  • Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
  • Bayfield, Wisconsin.
  • Mount Vernon, Iowa.
  • Hot Springs, South Dakota.
  • Medora, North Dakota.
  • Chagrin Falls, Ohio.
  • Granville, Ohio.
  • Yellow Springs, Ohio.
  • Nasville, Indiana.
  • Shipshewana, Indiana.
  • Saugatuck, Michigan.
  • Cottonwood Falls, Kansas.
  • Nebraska City, Nebraska.
  • Galena, Illinois.
  • Weston, Missouri.
  • Hermann, Missouri.
  • Parkville, Missouri.

You can read about each city – and cast your vote – online here.

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