Congrats to my hometown of Kalamazoo! The "Mall City" was just named one the the "10 Best Cities for Cheapskates" according to Kiplingers' magazine! Good job Kalamazoo! Way to be cheap! No, I'm kidding! The city has a fair amount of free or low cost activities plus a lower cost of living, all within a 3 hour drive of Chicago and Detroit. Perfect!

The article--10 Best Cities for Cheapskates--goes on to say:

"Kalamazoo's living costs are the lowest on our list: 13% below the national average and 21% below nearby Chicago. Housing is perhaps the city's most notably cheap amenity, with costs one-third below the national average. But Kalamazoo also offers a range of budget-friendly activities, from art and music at Western Michigan University to an unusually well-funded public library system. The Kalamazoo Nature Center, rated one of the country's best, charges $7 for nonmember admission and hosts free daily activities, from cooking workshops to yoga classes. Nearby parks, such as Cold Brook and Prairie View, boast a combined 140 miles of trails and three swimming beaches. Bored of the outdoors? Take your savings to Chicago, less than three hours away."

Who would have thought to the first pedestrian mall and Derek Jeter would also be so thrifty?