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WV Living Magazine Names Best Small Towns in West Virginia

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WV Living Magazine has added three local communities to its list of the best small towns in West Virginia.

Bridgeport, Buckhannon, and Elkins are three of eight towns in eight regions to be honored in the inaugural competition.

The magazine reviewed reader testimonies, and statistics on cost of living, crime, education, and amenities to determine the winners.

"As we traveled to the contending communities, we quickly realized a few key things," said Nikki Bowman, editor-in-chief of WV LIVING Magazine. "All of our winners have thriving arts communities, proving that art, music and culture play an important role in building better towns. Outdoor recreation is prevalent and residents spend a good bit of time outside. Crime is low, and, for the most part, the cost of living is below the national standards."

Best Small Town Winners

Southern Region – Lewisburg

Day or night, a creative undercurrent runs through this historic Greenbrier County town. It is a small town with big city amenities. You can strike out in any direction of Lewisburg and find attractions like a distillery, caves, bike trails, and of course, The Greenbrier.

Metro Region – Barboursville

Vast parks, creative small businesses, old brick buildings, and manicured front lawns welcome folks to this quiet Cabell County town.

Mid-Ohio Valley Region – Spencer

Tucked away in Roane County, Spencer has held onto small town charm reminiscent of the 1950s while still proclaiming an independent quirkiness that stems from a budding arts scene and evolving downtown.

Northern Panhandle Region – New Martinsville

Great architecture, history, art, and the Ohio River define this distinctive Wetzel County town. The community is also big on giving back and living healthy with a bevy of local charities and community gardens.

North Central Region – Bridgeport

Education is a huge part of this thriving community. Bridgeport is changing fast, too. Everyday enterprising opportunities are attracting new businesses and residents with its proximity to economic drivers like biotechnology, forensic science, biometrics, and aerospace manufacturing companies.

Mountain Lakes Region – Buckhannon

Buckhannon has a postcard feel about it without even trying. This idyllic Mountain Lakes community is tucked into the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains and anchored by the lush campus of West Virginia Wesleyan College.

Eastern Panhandle Region – Shepherdstown

Perched on West Virginia's easternmost edge, Shepherdstown is a vibrant cosmopolitan center near the lower Shenandoah River. The laid-back, go-with-the-flow vibe is attractive to businesses and individuals.

Potomac Highlands Region - Elkins

Theater, Venezuelan food, a small liberal arts college with beautiful, historic buildings, and a thriving art community – this is the scenery of a fairytale. Surrounded by the scenic peaks and valleys of the Monongahela National Forest, Elkins has a lot to offer residents and visitors.

Each town is featured in the current issue of WV LIVING Magazine and online

WV LIVING is available on newsstands around the state.