Living in Stillwater

File:Downtown Stillwater 2020-06-27.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

Located along the banks of the picturesque St. Croix River, Stillwater, Minnesota is a charming city known for its rich history, natural beauty, and vibrant community. With a population of approximately 20,000 residents, Stillwater offers a small-town atmosphere while being within close proximity to the bustling Twin Cities metropolitan area.

One of the city's main attractions is its beautifully preserved downtown area, featuring historic Victorian architecture, boutique shops, art galleries, and a wide range of dining options. Residents and visitors can stroll along Main Street, take in the scenic views of the river, or enjoy a leisurely boat ride on the St. Croix.

Outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty to explore in Stillwater. The city is surrounded by rolling hills, lush forests, and an extensive network of parks and trails, making it an ideal destination for hiking, biking, and picnicking. The nearby Gateway State Trail offers a scenic route for bikers and walkers, connecting Stillwater to St. Paul.

Stillwater also hosts a variety of annual events and festivals, including the popular Lumberjack Days and Harvest Fest, which showcase the city's historical roots and vibrant culture. The city's commitment to the arts is evident through its numerous art galleries, theaters, and music venues.

Education is highly valued in Stillwater, with excellent schools that consistently rank among the top in the state. The community places a strong emphasis on family-friendly activities and provides ample opportunities for children to thrive.

In summary, Stillwater, Minnesota is a captivating blend of history, natural beauty, and community spirit. Whether it's exploring the charming downtown, enjoying outdoor adventures, or immersing oneself in the city's vibrant cultural scene, residents of Stillwater find a quality of life that is truly special.

1.        Cost of Living

Stillwater, Minnesota has a cost of living that is slightly higher than the national average. While it may not be as expensive as some larger cities, it is important to consider various factors when assessing the overall cost of living in Stillwater. 

Stillwater, Minnesota | Stillwater, Minnesota | Flickr

Housing in Stillwater can be a significant expense. The city offers a range of housing options, from historic homes in the downtown area to newer developments in surrounding neighborhoods. Generally, housing prices in Stillwater are higher than the national average, but they can vary depending on factors such as location, size, and amenities.

Other aspects of the cost of living, such as transportation, utilities, and groceries, tend to be in line with national averages. Stillwater benefits from its proximity to the Twin Cities, which provides residents with access to a wide range of services and employment opportunities.

It's worth noting that Minnesota has a higher-than-average state income tax rate, which can impact overall affordability.

While the cost of living in Stillwater may be slightly higher, many residents find that the quality of life, access to amenities, and the community's unique character make it a worthwhile investment.

As with any location, it's advisable to research specific costs and consider personal financial circumstances when determining the affordability of living in Stillwater.

2.        Safety 

Stillwater, Minnesota is generally considered a safe place to live. The city has a relatively low crime rate compared to national averages, and residents often feel secure in their daily lives.

Stillwater, Minnesota | Stillwater, Minnesota | Flickr

The Stillwater Police Department is dedicated to maintaining public safety and works diligently to ensure the well-being of the community. They actively engage with residents through community outreach programs, fostering a sense of trust and cooperation.

Like any city, Stillwater does experience some level of crime, primarily consisting of property-related offenses such as theft and vandalism. However, violent crime rates in Stillwater remain relatively low, contributing to the overall sense of safety in the area. 

It is always recommended to take standard safety precautions, such as locking doors and windows, being aware of your surroundings, and reporting any suspicious activity to the appropriate authorities. Staying informed about local safety measures and staying connected with the community can further enhance the sense of security.

Overall, Stillwater is known for its safe and welcoming environment, providing residents with peace of mind and a strong sense of community.

3.        Schools 

Stillwater, Minnesota, boasts a rich educational landscape with a variety of schools catering to diverse academic and extracurricular needs. The city is known for its commitment to providing high-quality education to its residents. Stillwater Area Public Schools serves as the primary district, encompassing several elementary, middle, and high schools. These schools prioritize a comprehensive curriculum that emphasizes academic excellence, critical thinking, and character development.

School buses | Chris Devers | Flickr

In addition to the public school system, Stillwater is home to private schools that offer alternative educational choices. These institutions often emphasize specialized programs such as Montessori education or religious instruction, providing families with a range of options. 

The schools in Stillwater pride themselves on fostering a safe and inclusive learning environment. They prioritize community involvement and parent-teacher collaboration, recognizing the importance of a strong partnership between educators and families.

Furthermore, Stillwater's schools excel in extracurricular activities. They offer a wide array of sports, arts, and clubs, encouraging students to explore their interests outside of the classroom and develop well-rounded skills.

Overall, Stillwater, Minnesota, is a community that values education, offering a diverse and comprehensive range of schools that strive to prepare students for success in their academic and personal lives. 

4.        Job Opportunities 

Stillwater, Minnesota, offers a range of job opportunities across various sectors, making it an attractive place to work and live. The city's diverse economy and proximity to the Twin Cities metropolitan area contribute to its job market's vibrancy. 

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One significant sector in Stillwater is healthcare. The city boasts a number of hospitals, clinics, and assisted living facilities, creating employment opportunities for healthcare professionals such as doctors, nurses, medical technicians, and administrative staff.

Education is another prominent industry in Stillwater, with several schools and educational institutions in the area. Job opportunities can be found in teaching positions at public and private schools, as well as in administrative roles within school districts and educational support organizations.

Stillwater's historic downtown area and growing tourism industry provide employment opportunities in the hospitality sector. Restaurants, hotels, and shops often hire staff to cater to the needs of visitors and locals alike, particularly during peak seasons.

Manufacturing also plays a significant role in Stillwater's economy. Companies specializing in precision instruments, medical devices, and technology often have job openings for engineers, technicians, assemblers, and quality control professionals.

Furthermore, Stillwater's proximity to natural resources, including the St. Croix River, has led to opportunities in the recreation and outdoor industry. Jobs in outdoor education, guiding, and eco-tourism can be found in this sector.

Overall, Stillwater, Minnesota, offers a diverse range of job opportunities across healthcare, education, hospitality, manufacturing, and outdoor industries, making it an appealing location for individuals seeking employment in these fields.

Here are the Top 5 Employers in Stillwater:

  1. Stillwater Area Public Schools: The Stillwater Area Public Schools district is one of the largest employers in the area, providing education to students from pre-kindergarten through high school. The district employs teachers, administrators, support staff, and other educational professionals.
  2. Lakeview Hospital: Lakeview Hospital is a leading healthcare provider in Stillwater, offering a range of medical services. The hospital employs healthcare professionals, including doctors, nurses, technicians, and administrative staff.
  3. Andersen Corporation: Andersen Corporation is a well-known manufacturer of windows and doors, and their headquarters is located in Bayport, near Stillwater. The company employs a significant number of individuals in the manufacturing, engineering, sales, and administrative roles.
  4. Cub Foods: Cub Foods is a supermarket chain that operates a location in Stillwater. It provides employment opportunities in various positions, including store associates, cashiers, managers, and customer service personnel.
  5. Washington County: Washington County is the local government entity responsible for the administration and provision of various public services in the area. It employs a range of professionals, including administrators, law enforcement personnel, social workers, and more.

5.        Weather

Stillwater, Minnesota experiences a continental climate, characterized by four distinct seasons with varying weather conditions throughout the year.

HD wallpaper: winter, snow, frost, cold, tree, season, landscape, weather |  Wallpaper Flare

In the summer (June to August), the weather in Stillwater is generally warm and humid. Average temperatures range from the mid-70s°F (mid-20s°C) to the high 80s°F (around 30°C). Summers are usually pleasant, although occasional heatwaves can push temperatures into the 90s°F (32-35°C). Thunderstorms are common during this season.

Fall (September to November) in Stillwater brings cooler temperatures and colorful foliage. Average highs range from the upper 60s°F (around 20°C) to the low 50s°F (around 10°C). Nights can get chilly, with temperatures dropping into the 40s°F (5-10°C). It's a beautiful time to enjoy outdoor activities and witness the changing colors of the trees.

Winter (December to February) in Stillwater is cold and snowy. Average temperatures range from the teens to the low 30s°F (-5 to 0°C). Snowfall is common, and temperatures can occasionally drop below freezing. Winter sports enthusiasts can take advantage of nearby ski resorts and outdoor ice skating rinks. 

Spring (March to May) brings milder temperatures and the gradual return of greenery. Average highs range from the upper 30s°F (around 5°C) to the low 60s°F (around 15°C). However, spring weather can be variable, with fluctuations between warmer and cooler periods. Rain showers are common during this season.

It's worth noting that weather patterns can vary from year to year, and extreme weather events such as heatwaves, cold snaps, or heavy snowstorms can occur. It's always a good idea to check local forecasts for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

6.        Transportation

The majority of people in Stillwater rely on private vehicles, including cars, motorcycles, and bicycles, for their transportation needs. There are well-maintained roads and highways connecting Stillwater to other cities and towns in the region.

File:Stillwater Bridge 2017.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

Stillwater is served by Metro Transit, the public transportation agency for the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. Metro Transit operates bus services connecting Stillwater to downtown St. Paul and other suburbs. You can check the Metro Transit website for routes, schedules, and fares.

Taxis and rideshare services like Uber and Lyft are available in Stillwater. These services provide convenient door-to-door transportation options, especially for those who don't have access to a private vehicle or prefer not to drive.

Stillwater is known for its scenic beauty and riverfront location. The city has several bicycle lanes and pedestrian paths, making it bike-friendly and walkable. You can explore the city and its surroundings by walking or cycling, enjoying the views and attractions along the way.

7.        Culture and Community

Stillwater is known for its rich history and well-preserved architecture. The city's downtown area is lined with historic buildings and charming Victorian-style homes. The community takes pride in preserving its heritage, and there are efforts to maintain the historic character of the city.

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Stillwater has a thriving arts and music scene. The city hosts various art galleries, theaters, and music venues where local artists and performers showcase their talents. The annual Rivertown Art Festival and summer concert series are popular events that celebrate the arts and bring the community together.

Stillwater is known for its lively festivals and events throughout the year. The city hosts the popular Lumberjack Days, a festival celebrating the region's logging history. Other notable events include the Harvest Fest, the Winter Ice Cream Social, and the Fourth of July fireworks, among others. These events offer opportunities for residents and visitors to engage with the community and enjoy a range of activities.

Stillwater has a strong sense of community, and residents actively participate in community events and initiatives. There are numerous volunteer organizations, clubs, and community groups that offer opportunities for people to connect, support local causes, and make a positive impact in the area.

With its picturesque location along the St. Croix River and proximity to numerous parks and trails, Stillwater provides ample opportunities for outdoor recreation. Residents can enjoy activities such as boating, fishing, hiking, biking, and picnicking in the scenic surroundings, fostering a love for nature and an active lifestyle.

8.        Healthcare

Stillwater is home to Lakeview Hospital, a full-service hospital that provides a wide range of medical services, including emergency care, surgery, maternity services, and specialized treatments. The hospital is staffed by skilled healthcare professionals and equipped with modern facilities.

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There are several clinics and primary care providers in Stillwater, offering routine check-ups, preventive care, and general medical services. These clinics often have family medicine, internal medicine, and pediatric practitioners who provide comprehensive healthcare for individuals of all ages.

Stillwater has access to a variety of specialty care services. Patients in need of specialized treatments can find experts in fields such as cardiology, orthopedics, neurology, dermatology, and more. Specialists may have their own private practices or work in collaboration with hospitals and clinics in the area. 

Mental health services are also available in Stillwater. Mental health clinics and practitioners offer counseling, therapy, and psychiatric services to support individuals dealing with mental health conditions or seeking emotional well-being. 

Stillwater provides resources for senior care and assisted living. There are assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and senior care centers that cater to the needs of older adults, offering various levels of assistance and medical support. 

9.        Distance from Friends and Family 

The distance from friends and family in Stillwater, Minnesota would depend on the specific locations of your loved ones. Here are a few general considerations:

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If your friends and family members reside in Stillwater or nearby communities within the region, you may have the advantage of being close to them. In such cases, the distance may be relatively short, allowing for frequent visits and easy social interactions.

Stillwater is part of the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. If your friends and family members live in the Twin Cities or its suburbs, the distance would vary depending on their specific location. The Twin Cities area is relatively compact, so the distance to friends and family within the metro area can typically be covered within a reasonable driving distance.

If your friends and family members live outside the Twin Cities metro area, the distance can vary significantly. The United States is a large country, and the distance from Stillwater to other parts of Minnesota or different states can be substantial. Travel to visit distant friends and family may involve longer drives, flights, or other transportation options.

It's important to note that the concept of "distance" can also be subjective, as factors such as transportation options, personal circumstances, and individual preferences can influence how easy or challenging it is to maintain connections. Advancements in technology have also made it easier to stay connected with loved ones, regardless of physical distance, through video calls, social media, and other communication platforms.

Ultimately, the distance from friends and family in Stillwater would depend on their specific locations and your individual relationships.

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