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Columbus: Best Place to Live for Gays & Lesbians

 
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Columbus is featured in this month’s The Advocate national gay newsmagazine alongside cities like San Diego, Calif., Dallas, Texas and Portland, Oregon as one of the best places in the country for gays and lesbians to live.

Reprinted from The Advocate newsmagazine (March 27, 2007 issue)

POPULATION: 734,288

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME: $43,535

MEDIAN HOUSE COST: $218,000

GAY COMMUNITY CENTER: Stonewall Columbus Community Center

GAY PUBLIC OFFICIALS: Mary Jo Hudson, city council member

PRO-GAY LAWS OR PUBLIC POLICIES: No discrimination in all of the city’s “employment decisions, programs, services, and activities.”

“I grew up in a small town in Ohio,” says elementary school teacher Brett Gambill, 27. “I could not wait to get to Columbus. It’s wonderful to be in a place that is supportive and friendly. I don’t have a reason to leave. It’s a big hometown.”

Gambill lives in Victorian Village, one of several gayborhoods around downtown Columbus. In the nearby Short North Arts District, same-sex couples are seen holding hands while strolling in and out of the area’s many eclectic shops. “You drive down our main drag, and as you get from north campus [of Ohio State University] to downtown there are maybe 40 gay pride flags on different businesses,” says Molly Muth, 48, an account manager for a computer company who lives in the Clintonville neighborhood with her partner of 10 years, Judy Herendeen, 54. “It used to be a run-down, dilapidated area. Now it’s the kind of place you want to take people. There are lots of galleries and restaurants and bars.”

There are good jobs and affordable housing too, buoyed by the presence of the university. And there are many beautiful parks and bike paths around the city.

The first Saturday of every month is Gallery Hop in the Short North. Art galleries stay open late, there’s live music, and the whole place turns into a kind of street party. “It’s not just gay people,” Gambill says. “It’s diversity, I love it.”

The state of Ohio has one of the worst anti-gay marriage laws on the books, but that doesn’t bother Gambill or Muth. “We have a political climate that’s warming up to the fact that we exist,” Muth says.

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8 Responses to Columbus: Best Place to Live for Gays & Lesbians

  1. shroud
    shroud March 12, 2007 8:08 pm at 8:08 pm

    Dallas, Texas?

    The other two don’t surprise me at all, nor does Columbus, but I never would’ve guessed Dallas would make that list.

  2. naps
    naps March 12, 2007 8:19 pm at 8:19 pm

    shroud wrote Dallas, Texas?

    The other two don’t surprise me at all, nor does Columbus, but I never would’ve guessed Dallas would make that list.

    Yeah, me either!!! :shock: :shock: :shock:

  3. timothyb March 12, 2007 9:49 pm at 9:49 pm

    Yay! I get strange looks from my queer and jaded friends in San Francisco and New York when I tell them I chose Columbus rather than Chicago.. I think that living in places like SF and NYC and LA and the bigger cities are overpriced and overrated..

  4. Big_Ben March 13, 2007 5:27 am at 5:27 am

    Texas produces some of the most conservative politicians in the US so I agree with the others when I say that Dallas seems misplaced on the list.

  5. dru
    dru March 13, 2007 8:30 am at 8:30 am

    having grown up in the ‘burbs of big d, the aggregate is fairly politically conservative. but oaklawn was the short north, when the short north was still downtrodden. areas like knox-henderson, greenville ave, and deep ellum are progressive, urban pockets amidst a sea of socially conservative urban sprawl (insert g village, short north & clintonville and maybe i just described columbus?)

  6. enzo
    enzo January 31, 2008 1:50 pm at 1:50 pm

    I found this and bumped it up so that people could see statistics. Yay for me.

  7. enzo
    enzo January 31, 2008 1:52 pm at 1:52 pm

    For the statistics, I found this thread….

  8. timothyb January 31, 2008 9:18 pm at 9:18 pm

    timothyb wrote Yay! I get strange looks from my queer and jaded friends in San Francisco and New York when I tell them I chose Columbus rather than Chicago.. I think that living in places like SF and NYC and LA and the bigger cities are overpriced and overrated..

    Well, I moved to Chicago in August of 07, so Columbus wasn’t all that I needed as far as gay “community” goes.. Not that Chicago is much better, I’m feeling more “post-gay” than anything these days and steroided out circuit queens really don’t do anything for me..

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