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A Classic New England Town, Montpelier is a Down-to-Earth, Pretty Place and Offers Plenty of Things to Do
Dating from 1781, Montpelier is tucked along two rivers in central Vermont's rugged Green Mountains' foothills and is the state's capital city (and the smallest capital in the nation). It is home to just 8,000 down-to-earth, educated residents, most of whom support social justice, enviromental sustainability and healthy living.
A quintessential New England town, Montpelier boasts tree-canopied lanes, white church steeples, classic architecture (Federal, Cape Cod, Colonial Revival) and a beautifully restored capitol dome. The small but attractive downtown contains storefronts in awning-draped red brick buildings. Restaurant menus include everything from pancakes smothered in Vermont maple syrup to farm-to-table entrees. The Hunger Mountain Co-op offers a wide array of locally grown produce, and the Capital City Farmers' Market is a lively spot. Nightlife is quiet except for a few low key bars, some with live music.
The Vermont Opera Theatre, the Vermont Philharmonic, Capital City Concerts and more bring music to the city. Lost Nation Theater is a professional theater company, and the well respected Vermont College of Fine Arts attracts writers and musicians. Places of worship are many, with Buddhists, Baptists, Methodists, Unitarians and others all at home here.
Population: 8,000 (city proper)
Age 45 or Better: 42%
Cost of Living: 7% above the national average
Median Home Price: $450,000
Climate: Summer temperatures are in the 70s and 80s. Winter temperatures are in the single digits, teens and 20s. The city receives nearly 100 inches of snow and 35 inches of rain each year, on average. Winters are often overcast. Autumns are crisp, cool and breathtaking.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients: Yes
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission: Yes
Public Transit: Yes
Crime Rate: Meets the national average
Public Library: Yes
Political Leanings: Very liberal
College Educated: 65%
Is Vermont Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? No
Cons: Some areas are hilly, and the city flooded in 2023. It could happen again.
Notes: Fast food chains and national retailers are few. The city does not even have a McDonald's. Home prices have increased 5% since last year. The population has remained steady during the last decade.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Vermont is the second smallest state by population and was admitted to the Union in 1781 as the 14th state. Its capital, Montpelier, is the smallest state capital in the nation.
Bordered Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and the Canadian province of Quebec, most of Vermont is forested with hardwoods and conifers. The Green Mountains run up the middle of the state, separating Lake Champlain and other valley terrain from the Connecticut River valley on the eastern side.
Vermont is the safest state in the country, and it is the largest producer of mayple syrup. Although many people think Ben and Jerry's is the state's largest employer, it is actually IBM.
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