avondale az

#3. Avondale

Like other cities on this list, Avondale isn’t quite what you’d expect. Located in Arizona, you’d expect a strong conservative atmosphere, yet this isn’t the case in Avondale—perhaps a side effect of its rather young population; seventy percent of residents are younger than 24. Avondale is also the most diverse town on the list (50 percent of residents identify as Hispanic, 34 percent as white, 9 percent as black, 3.5 percent Asian, and 1.7 percent Native American) meaning there’s a wide array of viewpoints that lend to a moderate perspective. It makes sense then that the 2012 election was fairly balanced, with Romney earning 55 percent of the vote and Obama earning 43 percent.

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Mayor Kenn Weise seems to embody this unusual divide quite well. He’s been a guest on Gun Freedom Radio and he has also worked with the EPA to deal with local polluters. He is also a supporter of various green initiatives in the city. And while Raúl Grijalva, their Representative from the 3rd District, is a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat, his bills have had a good number of Republican co-sponsors. One of his most recent bipartisan bills—proposed in May of this year—involved voluntary data collection for members of the LGBT community.

As for Avondale’s draws, the climate certainly doesn’t disappoint (unless you hate dry heat and year-round sunshine—they get 291 days of it each year). Plus, its close proximity to Phoenix has led to it becoming a popular commuter city. And, for you NASCAR fans out there, Avondale is where you can find the Phoenix International Raceway, which hosts two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and two Xfinity Series each year. If you get bored in town, you can also take a short car ride to Scottsdale, Mesa, Sedona or Tempe.

Residents here are likely to…

  • Eat at California Pizza Kitchen.

  • Shop at Hobby Lobby.

  • Drive a GMC.

  • Read National Geographic.

  • Watch HBO

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