A friend tells me I need to stop talking about what a great place Idaho is to call home.  He lives in New York City.  He moved there 20 years ago and took a job as president of an independent movie company.  He and his staff crank out some pretty good art house films.  Prior to going to the big city, he lived in suburban Upstate New York, which isn’t considered a great place for advancement.

It lists the five best places to live in the state and Twin Falls is second behind Boise!

On many of my weekends I grab a camera and take pictures of the surrounding beauty of Southern Idaho.  Or sometimes I’ll take a week in the panhandle and sometimes I drift into a neighboring state.  Mostly, the thousands of pictures I’ve taken over the last few years are from the Gem State.

Then I create an online album and share with friends across the country.  I’ll usually include 400 to 800 words describing the local history and the culture.

A few weeks ago he wrote me and warned if I kept sending out the pictures and stories, we would be overrun with even more newcomers than we’re already seeing!

Here’s a statistic to chew on:  Twin Falls, Idaho saw a roughly 20 percent growth rate over the past decade.  Or high teens if you aren’t rounding.  This calendar year, the same city could see a trend pointing at a 40 percent increase by the end of the current decade.  Until a couple of years ago, Twin Falls rarely made lists of the best places to live in the state.  Then I started observing a trend.  A lot more travel writers were talking about Shoshone Falls and the dozens of neighboring falls.  There were still stories about the Snake River Canyon but suddenly there were even stories about the downtown restaurant scene.  This morning, I spotted a letter in the Times-News.  A recent visitor from Pullman, Washington (a high end university town) praised downtown Twin Falls!

Over the past weekend I found a website named zomper.com.  It lists the five best places to live in the state and Twin Falls is second behind Boise!  The site also links to another page and mentions rents have jumped a whopping 21 percent year-over-year, however.  The same page lists the average rent for a one bedroom apartment at under 600 dollars.  I’m not sure where that latter number comes from.  Can you find anything below 700 dollars and if you do, does it come with a roof and walls?

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