With nearly 80,000 residents, Racine is the fifth largest city in Wisconsin, but gets to tout the lowest housing costs in the state, along with being well below the national average. Modest ranch-style homes are easy to find, although this does not mean you will not find larger multi-level houses oozing with sophistication and modern upgrades on the market. With its gorgeous location along the shores of Lake Michigan, its diverse population, and crime rates that are continually dropping (violent crime is at a record low), Racine an ideal place to plant roots.
The diversity of cultures is reflected in the array of restaurants, cafes and bistros located in the area, with everything from Thai to Greek to burger joints satisfying taste buds. Expect to see a lot of mom and pop-owned joined, ensuring authentic flavors and cuisines. You can find mid-century diners, trendy sushi joints, and modern day supper clubs around town. Racine also takes the state pastry very seriously; the kringle, an oval Danish dessert of 32 flaky layers and fruit or nut fillings, is primarily created and shipped from here and enjoyed worldwide. Even the water is fantastic; in 2011 the city received an award for having the best tasting tap water in the country.
Outdoor enthusiasts can find a multitude of activities due to the proximity of the water. Fishing, boating, and days lounging at one of the nation’s top swim beaches are just a few ways to pass the time. History is also prevalent in Racine with a slew of homes, churches, college buildings and other structures that have been maintained for more than a century and a half. Main Street of the historic downtown made its way onto the National Register of Historic Places in 1987 and boasts structures from the 1840s. Architectural buffs have the opportunity to pour over the Frank Lloyd Wright – designed building that houses the Johnson Wax Headquarters before moving on to the numerous other Wright designs that dot the Wisconsin landscape.