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liv score
668
How We Calculate Our Data
Civics 68
Demographics 55
Economy 55
Education 44
Health 67
Housing 49
Infrastructure 31

#24. Framingham, MA

Some big-name companies Bose Corporation and Staples, just to name a couple — call Framingham home, helping crank the economic engine in this Massachusetts city. But there’s still plenty of room here for innovative startups, fun breweries, and a burgeoning arts and culture scene. Situated off the Mass Pike and between Boston and Worcester, Framingham has gone through a growth spurt in recent years. The city has dozens of parks and three public beaches. Plus, residents here can also fill up their weekends exploring downtown Framingham, with an array of diverse businesses including Asian, Hispanic, Brazilian and Eastern European restaurants and shops.

Top Industries and Employers: Biotech, education, medical and retail are among Framingham’s top industries. TJX Companies which operates TJ Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods and other stores has its headquarters here.

Best Coffee Shop: The star of the Saxonville Mills Café and Roastery is single-origin Colombian coffee, but don’t overlook the arepas and turnovers at the pastry counter. The café’s owner sells 100 percent arabica coffee from his family’s small farm in Colombia. 

Best Local Beer/Brewery: Not only does Exhibit ‘A’ Brewing Company brew some tasty beers, some of their releases benefit charity, like Veterans Ink, a chocolate peanut butter milk stout that supports Veterans Inc. The brewery’s events calendar is noteworthy, too, with flower-arranging workshops and bread-making classes joining the offerings more typical of breweries, like live music and stand-up comedy shows.

Must-Have Meal: Dave’s Sweet Potato Hash Omelet that’s stuffed with beef, bacon, onions, craisins, and sweet potatoes is a favorite at J&M Diner, a local breakfast institution.

Best Meetup Spot (When Meeting Up Is a Thing Again): The cocktail menu at Bourbon’s Kitchen and Cocktails is a diplomatic one, divided into “old school” and “new school” categories. The “shareables” menu has something for everyone, too, like avocado fries and little devils (bacon-wrapped prunes with gorgonzola). 

Creative Hub: Housed in an old firehouse, the Amazing Things Arts Center is a one-stop-shop for arts and entertainment, hosting live music, open mics, comedy, theater and film events. Plus, you can peruse carefully curated art galleries.

Favorite Weekend Activity: Farm Pond Park is a go-to spot for picnics (and bocce ball, if you’re feeling competitive).

Free Way to Have Fun: Through a partnership with Framingham State University, residents can attend free weekly lectures at the local public library with academics leading talks on everything from politics to poetry. No homework; just engaging lectures!

Local Dream Job: A chocolatier at Chocolate Therapy, a shop that not only sells decadent truffles, bars and barks but also hosts chocolate-making workshops and parties.

Read More:
Best Places to Live in Massachusetts

– Brittany Anas

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