Living Here

2bestplace2midsizedIn the Greater Manhattan, Kansas, region, we like to say we’re “something special in between.” If you look at a map, you can see all the places we’re “in between” geographically, but we’re in between in a lot of other good ways as well.

Best of Both Worlds

At times, you will feel as if you’re in a big city, and at others, you’re back in your own hometown. You can see Yo Yo Ma or Kristen Chenoweth on Friday night on the K-State campus, then run into your kid’s teacher while shopping at the Farmers Market on Saturday morning or while enjoying one of the most spectacular fireworks shows in the Midwest.

Our largest city, Manhattan, isn’t a farming community, but it has one of the greatest concentrations of agricultural and bioscience expertise in the world. Just a few miles outside the city limits, you’re in the beautiful, rolling Flint Hills, experiencing rural beauty and the original home on the range.

Downtown Manhattan is a foodie hotspot with its fine dining establishments, breweries and casual restaurants. Nearby Wamego is a popular tourist destination, featuring the Oz Museum, a winery and authentic Kansas dining experiences. Our region’s lifestyle boutiques and trendy entertainment options will keep you and your family well supplied and amused.

You’ll find that in a world full of suburbs, we’re a region full of communities. 

Big XII Athletics

There is absolutely nothing like Manhattan on a home-game Saturday in October at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. The K-State Family paints the town purple and you need to see it to believe it. Soccer in the state-of-the art Buser Family Park brings crowds out to see top-caliber talent compete and win. Basketball games in the “Octagon of Doom” at Bramlage Coliseum are a raucous, blood-pumping experience, to be sure. Check out K-State Athletics to find out what The Wildcat Way is all about.

Our People

Kansas State University and Fort Riley, home of the US Army’s 1st Infantry Division, are the engines of our region, bringing people here from all over the world with new ideas and new energy. These folks become friends and neighbors to lifelong Kansans who revel in the vitality and diversity of our communities.

While we know we have far to go, we are working on issues of inclusion and justice. Manhattan was the first city in Kansas to pass an ordinance guaranteeing the rights of LGBTQI+ people in housing, employment and other basic human rights, and was named the second most inclusive city in Kansas, trailing only a Kansas City suburb. K-State’s Black Student Union is consistently ranked number one among Big XII universities. Our churches, synagogue and mosques collaborate to address food insecurity and other needs of our citizens. Come help us make progress!

Pace of Life

We jokingly lament our 12-minute commutes and “traffic jams” when we’re stopped five cars back at a light. We love our laid-back summers and love it even more when “the students” of K-State come back in August with their energy and excitement.

Our stable economy, active housing market and wide variety of options mean great choices for new folks coming to town. And a shared spirit of civic engagement means that if you want to join, volunteer, lead, march or anything in between, you will be welcome in our many civic organizations, clubs and interest groups.

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See what it's like to live in Kansas from the people who know best. Several locals share why they love it here.