The island has been called a lot of things by national media — gritty, dusty, faded, just to name a few.

So, it’s refreshing that the historic seaport city was ranked No. 9 on the Top 10 list of America’s friendliest small cities based on research by real estate site Movoto. Click here for the full report. 

Movoto looked at 100 cities with less than a 50,000 population and ranked their friendliness based on crime, charity, gift stores, Facebook likes, etc.

 Here’s the ranking:

1. San Luis Obispo, Calif.

2. Charlottesville, Va.

3. Olympia, Wash.

4. Palm Springs, Calif.

5. Harrisburg, Penn.

6. Littleton, Colo.

7. Jopelin, Mo.

8. Grapevine, Texas.

9. Galveston, Texas

10. Coral Gables, Fla.

 And here’s the seven criteria in Movoto's words:

 • Violent crime rate (friendlier residents = less stabbing)

• Percent of income given to charity (friendly folks spread the wealth around)

• Flower and gift stores per capita (more stores = more demand for gifts)

• Card and stationery stores per capita (ditto)

• Bars per capita (the classic socializing spot)

• Farmers’ markets per capita (a great place for residents to interact)

• Religious organizations per capita (being nice to your neighbors is kind of a big deal in all religions.

• Facebook likes (friendly places make more digital friends).

So, would you agree Galveston is friendly? What’s so friendly about it? And what’s the friendliest thing an islander has done for you lately?

(1) comment

Lars Faltskog

IMHO, life on the island is a double-edged sword. Folks are friendly and, unlike Houston, you will likely see someone pretty often if you circulate toward the five and dimes or popular eateries. It's just so easy to "run into" someone. By and large, our craftsmen houses with nice porches and the way folks walk their dogs and exchange pleasentries.. all of these are the"positives".

However, I'll use the "walk the dog" issue to illustrate some of the negatives. Because we run so well with familiarity, when someone is angry with, let's say, another person's loose dog, that angry person (because of the familiarity) will express his/her anger much more easily. This applies to other run-of-the-mill things. I notice here on the island that folks are pretty quick to express their dissatisfaction at retail places, et cetera. In other words, "no holds barred".

So, the familiarity has its ups and downs. I'll have to agree: we have a lot of bars here. It's so easy to find a good time on the island. Then again, many have too good of a time. Ipso facto, look at the mugshot websites. A lot of folks get into trouble around here.

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