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5 Reasons to Call Cedar Valley, IA Home 

This region in Northeast Iowa is a midwestern paradise. 

By Livability on November 11, 2022

Shades of River Amphitheater, Waverly, IA _ Drone Images
Jonathan David Sabin

The Cedar Valley is a scenic region in Northeast Iowa made up of over 250,000 residents and six counties. This gem of a region is home to WaterlooCedar Falls and a collection of standout communities. Together, these communities provide residents with a thriving arts scene, fun, family-friendly activities, exciting nightlife, exquisite eateries and a list of must-attend concerts and festivals, among other things.

Here are five reasons why the Cedar Valley is becoming a relocation destination of choice.

1. A Smart Start

If you’re a college student, you can choose between many top higher education institutions without leaving the area. The University of Northern Iowa is ranked among the top Midwest universities by U.S. News & World Report. At the same time, Hawkeye Community College offers more than 45 one-year and two-year programs that lead to “hot” careers. The Princeton Review recognizes Wartburg College as one of the nation’s best liberal arts colleges. At the same time, Allen College has nearly 80 years of excellence in health care education. Also available to students is Upper Iowa University, which offers degrees in 40+ majors and evening classes.

Lost Island Theme Park, Waterloo, IA
Jonathan David Sabin

2. Fun for All Ages

If you can’t find anything fun to do in the Cedar Valley, you’re not looking hard enough, especially regarding community festivals and attractions. Great events to attend include the Sturgis Falls Celebration, Fredericksburg Dairy Days, New Hampton Heartland Days, and the Waterloo Open pro-am golf tournament. Also, on the Fourth of July, Celebrate Indee in the city of Independence is a nationally recognized event known as one of the best places in the region to catch fireworks.

3. A Strong Economy

The economy of the Cedar Valley is strong, with multiple sectors enjoying success. That includes advanced manufacturing led by companies like John Deere, TriMark Corp. and Bertch Cabinet, and insurance and financial services led by CUNA Mutual Group. Other sectors are fintech, IT, including app development for gaming, aerospace, logistics and higher education.

Families ride along the trails at Rolling Prairie Trail in the Cedar Valley region of Iowa.
Matthew Ohl/Butler-Grundy Development Alliance

4. Take to the Trails

Excellent quality of life is available to the residents of Cedar Valley, and that includes recreational opportunities. More than 100 miles of trails exist, including the popular Cedar Valley Nature Trail, which offers beautiful views of the Cedar River and rolling prairie land. Also available to residents are state and county parks, several public golf courses and a hockey rink that schedules many open skating opportunities.

5. Easy to Get Around

The ease of transportation is obvious in the Cedar Valley. U.S. Highway 20 stretches across the East and West Coast, while U.S. 218 connects to the north and south U.S. For air travelers, Waterloo Regional Airport is served by American Airlines, and Eastern Iowa Airport features carriers including Allegiant Air, American, Delta, Frontier and United Airlines.

If you’d like to learn more about the Cedar Valley area, check out the latest edition of Livability: Cedar Valley, Iowa

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