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Salt Lake City

City Limits
Metro Area

Sources: World Population Review, Wikipedia

Known by many names
SLC, City of the Saints, Crossroads of the West, Small Lake City, Ski City USA

Where else could you find a city transformed from a mecca for the Latter-day Saints to the diverse, urban community we see today? Salt Lake City is a burgeoning hot-house of creative talent with a fascinating history that lives palpably in the quirky, welcoming feel of everyday life.

The Salt Lake City skyline at sunsetPhoto by Saul Floeres

This city founded by religious pioneers is a bastion of creative power and is the home of endless cultural collaborations. Roughly a third of residents speak a language other than English at home. A welcoming city, it has an open-door stance towards transplants, refugees, and immigrants, which has made the city more cosmopolitan and creative.

Salt Lake City constantly prioritizes and nourishes its creative talent: there’s the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, indie galleries like Local Colors of Utah, free artist talks, artist collectives like the Roots Art Kollective, an alarming number of tattoo parlors, an excellent symphony and opera, four local acting companies, the Utah Shakespeare Festival, and finally, 29 local distilleries and breweries.

“I’ve lived in many, many places. But truly, Salt Lake is my favorite place. I have no desire to move to Los Angeles. The people are the nicest people in the world. Life is just easy here.”

Tan FranceActor

Oh, and it’s a ski haven. Legitimately. What’s better for your creativity than fresh powder? From November to April—check out Brighton, which offers night skiing, or a more remote option like Powder Mountain or Sundance. Not to mention the vast expanse of parkland available to soothe your mind and make space for creative ideas. Zion, Bryce Canyon, and Arches are among the top national parks in America, and all are less than five hours’ drive from downtown Salt Lake City.

It’s safe to say that no matter what kind of creative expression you find yourself gravitating toward, there’s a supportive community for you in Salt Lake City. Tech startups have earned the region the moniker Silicon Slopes. The arts reign with fervor, including a ballet, opera, and a symphony, as well as the Pioneer Theatre Company. Utah was the first state to pass a comprehensive antidiscrimination law in 2007, making Salt Lake City a protected place for many LGBTQ folks. And Salt Lake’s first openly gay mayor, Jackie Biskupski, took office in 2016.

A city good for… an overly enthusiastic music and theater community.