Our TownJohn and Micah of Just 2 Guys fame have created a survey in preparation for a documentary about Springfield. Here's how I (hastily) responded.
Many people say there is nothing to do in Springfield. Do you agree with this statement? Please explain your answer.
"Nothing to do" is relative. We are a city of 120,000. If you need to have a Major League baseball stadium or world renowned art museum in your backyard, then you don't choose a city of this size to live in. If you need a beach or mountain to climb, the Midwest is not for you. For a mid-sized Midwestern town, we have plenty 'to do'. There are beautiful parks, golf courses, a large lake for fishing and boating, bars and clubs that are great about presenting live music, a thriving theater community...I'll stop before I start sounding like the SCVB.
A common complaint about Springfield is that there is a serious lack of shopping. Do you agree or disagree? Again, please offer an explanation to support your answer.
I can't think of a single store that we don't either have locally, or can't be ordered from online. Unless Best Buy and Target go out of business, I'd say I'm covered.
In your opinion, has Springfield gotten better in the last 10-20 years or has it gotten worse? Please explain your answer with some examples.
Tough call. 20 years ago Fiat Allis had closed already, but Pillsbury was still operating. We also still had the Cardinals at Lanphier Park, and Lincoln Fest. Good Times...but I would much rather live in the 2008 version of Springfield. I have tons of photos of downtown during the 80's, and it was a bleak looking place. Today, it is being restored - centered around a world class library and museum. It also seems like we might finally have active groups of people working to improve the city for families.
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live? Why?
A younger, less married version of myself would have wanted to move to London to pursue a design career.
Why do you choose to live in Springfield? Give as many examples as necessary.
Springfield isn't the kind of town people 'choose' to live in. You are either born here and stay, or are brought here by employment or marriage. My dad moved us here when I was 11 when he got a job here. I met my wife here, bought my first house here, and had my kids here. We have stayed here mainly because we like to be close to our families, which I would guess is a pretty common reason for people who choose not to move away from here.
Also, the cost of living is ridiculously low here. Watching real estate shows on TV, it seems unreal to see what people are paying for homes in almost every other part of the country. I have a ten minute commute to and from work and can get from one side of town to the other in 15 minutes. You can't get that in Chicago, and with $4 gas - that's a big deal.
How would you describe the people of Springfield? Please use as many adjectives as possible.
It's hard to describe Springfieldians as a group because there are so many different kinds of people here. Overall, they are super-friendly and family oriented. There are clusters that enjoy culture and knowledge as much as anyone from any metropolis. There are also those who you would swear were playing characters from Green Acres. The State Fair is great for people watching.
What is your opinion of the job situation in Springfield?
Certainly not as peachy as it used to be, before government jobs started being scattered around the state, but it still doesn't seem like it would be hard for an employable person to find work.