Lists and More Lists

By Kellye Crocker

Des Moines has landed on yet another “best of” list. Pop-culture bible Paste magazine recently unveiled “10 Undercover Stylish Neighborhoods in the US,” ranking the East Village No. 10 (ours, not Manhattan’s), with shout-outs to Raygun, Hill Vintage & Knits and the Blazing Saddle. And now there’s a T-shirt for that.

After learning about Paste’s praise last week, the productive imps at Raygun commemorated the capital city’s achievements with an “asphalt”-colored T-shirt (pictured) with subtle highlighter-yellow printing: “#1! DES MOINES! Number one city to list as the surprise city on a list of cities!”

“It’s like there’s a list for everybody,” Raygun founder and owner Mike Draper said from his stylish East Village lair. “We’re like, man, somewhere Oskaloosa is No. 3  on some list.”

In recent years list-ologists have lauded Des Moines as a great place for young adults, families, oldsters, job seekers, farmers market lovers, aspiring startup magnates and homeowners looking to buy in a medium-sized metro area, among others. (See the Greater Des Moines Partnership’s list of lists here.)

“Most people don’t think of Des Moines as a major city,” Draper says, and that’s fine with him. “I don’t really want Des Moines to turn into Austin, Texas. It’ll take me longer to get to work (in the stylish East Village). The interstate will be clogged with hipsters trying to get to tech companies.” FYI, Paste ranks Old West Austin No. 9.


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