Great doesn’t even begin to describe Great Falls’ quality of life.
Whether it’s natives who grew up there and decided it was too good of a place to leave or people who moved there from thousands of miles away, Great Falls offers a special feeling residents can’t get enough of.
“I did an internship with the Montana Conservation Corps, and I loved it here,” Shevaun Holum says. “There are wide open spaces, you can go to the mountains in half an hour – I’m outdoorsy, and I enjoy adventure, so that appeals to me.”
Mix friendly neighbors, a work-life balance buoyed by nearly nonexistent commute times and affordable housing options with spectacular natural features, and it’s easy to see why the people who call Great Falls home love it here.
“There are lots of opportunities to volunteer, get to know local people and really be a part of the community,” says Scott Anderson, who grew up in Great Falls. “Every group I’m involved in wants to see people give back. People are so friendly and welcoming when new people come to the table – we want more people to move here, we want the city to grow and we want what’s best for our city.”
Unlike bigger regions where the 60-hour workweek is not uncommon, Great Falls residents aren’t prisoners to the grind. Rather than living work-controlled lifestyles, locals make their time off the clock their own.
“Coming home at the end of the day, I can just take off for a few hours and have some fun outdoors,” Shevaun Holum says. “I look forward to weekends, too, when we can go fishing or hiking, take a day trip or go overnight camping. There’s a lot less stress traveling on roads. You don’t have big, congested highways, there’s less traffic, and less wait time at stoplights.”
Affordability is another attractive feature of the region. Great Falls is far less expensive than major metropolitan areas, and its cost of living comes in at 89.7% of the national average.
Great Falls’ large selection of quality housing means you can find a home within the environment that you deem perfect – a two-story on a quiet street, an apartment near one of the 57 parks in the city, or maybe a farm-style house farther out of town where you can have a bit more acreage.
“It’s my understanding from talking to our housing professionals that even though the city is growing and people are moving in, we have the most reasonable housing market compared to Montana’s other three largest cities,” Anderson says.
And with gorgeous views right outside, even a glance out the window is sure to brighten any resident’s day.
“I can look out my window and see mountains, rather than building after building,” Shevaun Holum says. “Great Falls’ breathtaking surroundings are a major plus for residents. Even within the town, access to outdoor recreation is just minutes away.”
To give residents even more of a chance to enjoy the outdoors, the city recently improved and expanded its River’s Edge Trail, which offers nearly 60 miles for walking, running and biking.
“A lot of people make trips of a lifetime just to enjoy our neighborhood,” Shevaun Holum says.
If you’d like to learn more about the Great Falls area, check out the latest edition of Livability Great Falls, MT.