VC Ranked Top Place to Raise Kids in ND

With a growing oil patch in western North Dakota and the Fargo-Moorhead area expanding, the entire state of North Dakota has been recognized for its growth and low unemployment numbers lately. According to two articles published in the Times-Record Forbes recently ranked North Dakota third on their annual Best State for Business and Careers list, and in November North Dakota was ranked the best run state in the nation by the annual 24/7 Wall Street study.

Yet another city in the state has been recognized for its excellence — and this time, it’s right here.

Bloomberg Businessweek recently ranked Valley City as the best place to raise kids in North Dakota.

According to the online article, “With a population just north of 6,500, Valley City is actually among North Dakota’s largest cities.”
In a summary of Valley City, the website praised Valley City for its location and scenery.

“The town, about an hour’s drive from Fargo, escapes the pitfalls of rural life with a variety of sights breaking up the landscape, including 11 historic bridges and five city parks — one with a skating rink.”
The article, “America’s Best Places to Raise Kids 2013,” published on Dec. 17, names the best city in each state to raise kids based on certain criteria.

Businessweek teamed up with Bloomberg Rankings to evaluate more than 3,200 places nationwide with populations between 5,000 and 50,000, the article stated.
“Public school performance and safety were weighed most heavily, and to gauge the local job market, we looked at median income and county-level unemployment. Other factors include housing costs, commute time, poverty, adults’ educational attainment, share of households with children, and diversity.”

The list excludes places where the median family income exceeds $115,866, the lower limit for the wealthiest 20 percent of U.S. families.

Mary Lee Nielson, Valley City city commissioner and marketing coordinator for the Valley City Convention and Visitors Bureau said, “We’ve always said that Valley City is just right — excellent schools, small town atmosphere and close to North Dakota’s biggest city when we need big city amenities.”

Valley City Mayor Bob Werkhoven said, “There’s some truth to that (ranking).” It is advantageous to be near a larger city that has top notch medical facilities and things of that nature, you have the metro area within 45 minutes of where we live now,” that can provide people with services not available in Valley City.

“And there’s some advantages to living in a smaller town — traffic and things like that are a little slower pace. And we don’t have that rat race going on all the time.”

The link to Valley City’s rank is