OT: MSN news has decided that Ann Arbor does not have an "authentic college vibe"

Submitted by Happyshooter on March 29th, 2010 at 2:36 PM

This one is really weird. They leave off A2 and Austin and Duke.


Not sure if they are trying to raise commenters or if the author is dumb.



March 29th, 2010 at 2:43 PM ^

Austin is kick ass. Part of the problem with it is it's size. It's not a town in any measure of the word. Unlike Madison, Texas's capital is huge. The University is just a very small part of it, and if the University were removed, Austin would still be a bustling center for government and commerce.

And like Durham, there's a large poor area very near the college. You cross I-35 to go to the baseball/softball complex, you're in a pretty bad neighborhood.


March 29th, 2010 at 2:41 PM ^

The author probably went to a small private school that is truly a town defined by the college. Ann Arbor isn't strictly defined by the college, although it would hard to argue that without the college, it would suffer greatly. Ann Arbor is close enough to Detroit to be a commuter suburb, while their choices are all secluded.

Just my thoughts on rationalizing.


March 29th, 2010 at 2:48 PM ^

I live near Oberlin. It's a decent town, but not even close to Ann Arbor. As far as size goes, I'd compare it to Hanover, NH, which I also think is a nicer town. They also reference a "nearby" restaurant in Vermilion, which is about as close to Oberlin as some of Detroit is to Ann Arbor. This article should be called "places to go if you can't get into Michigan".


March 29th, 2010 at 3:15 PM ^

Ann Arbor doesn't feel like a lot of other college towns. The average person that you run into on the street is more likely to make a Star Wars-related joke than he is to tell you which fraternity house to go to to find the best party. To some people, that means Ann Arbor doesn't have a bona fide college atmosphere.


March 29th, 2010 at 3:17 PM ^

Skimmed the first page and quickly lost interest.

"I could simply assume the Ann Arbor, Austin and "Research Triangle" rubric, instead I called out via social media to followers and friends for their suggestions..."

Who are the followers and friends? There is a reason AA is on everyone's list - it is awesome. Tell your friends and followers to visit sometime.

Maybe I'm grouchy after last night but articles like this seem like self-serving fluff.


March 29th, 2010 at 3:20 PM ^

Most of the cities on the list are pretty cool. However, I was really surprised by the inclusion of Northampton and Oberlin. I've been through Northampton quite a bit and it's not exactly the coolest town in the world. It's pretty non-descript. Also, Oberlin just seems like an odd place to me...maybe just b/c it's in Ohio and I'm jaded towards all things in Ohio.

But, after looking at the list, it's a funny group of towns. The author clearly steered away from most of the "big name" schools - with the exception of Georgia. Either way, it's not skin off my teeth...A2 is the bomb!


March 29th, 2010 at 3:22 PM ^

Well if you actually read the article, the author states basically "I don't want to choose Ann Arbor or Austin like all those other college guides, so I asked my idiot friends what they thought and went from there".

End of story.

Ann Arbor is a classy broad.


March 29th, 2010 at 3:57 PM ^

Duke does not have a college town. It is considerably offset from Durham. And if it were integrated with Durham, it would be the single worst college town in America.

st barth

March 29th, 2010 at 4:07 PM ^

Although I didn't bother to read the article, I did spend about 9 years living in Ann Arbor. As a student, life is obviously dominated by the "college town" aspect...but as a professional working in the city for several years, it was amazing to me how quickly the University felt like a distant experience.

Depending on one's working environment and social circles, it's certainly possible to live in Ann Arbor and not feel like you are in a college-dominated town. In fact, if it wasn't for my personal interest in the football team, I would've completely forgotten about the University most of the time (after graduation, of course).

I don't think this is a bad thing either. Rather, I think that it's to Ann Arbor's credit that it can be perceived as more than just a college town.