Subscribers to the outdoor-centric magazine Outside magazine received an issue that would pull at the heartstrings of any UMD Bulldog. The magazine’s September cover featured a cityscape view of Duluth as seen from the rocky shore in Canal Park. The cover featured the 2014 winner of the magazine’s “Best Towns Ever” contest, which Duluth won in a multi-round online voting campaign this past summer.
The two-page spread about Duluth includes photographs of local businesses such as Vikre Distillery, Northern Waters Smokehaus and Bent Paddle Brewing. The identity of the man who graces the cover and several of the inside photos is not revealed. The issue hit newsstands on August 4th, according to the Outside website.
The article mentions the more than 150 Olympians the city has produced — from Kara Groucher to the 2010 curling team — and notes Mayor Don Ness’ height (6-foot-3).
“It’s cool the issue is coming out,” Ness said via email to the Duluth News Tribune. “But at least from my perspective, this has always been about Duluth taking pride in our incredible outdoor recreation and looking ahead to build on that competitive advantage.”
“The nationwide exposure is great, but its’ much less important than the experiences and opinions of people who live here and experience Duluth every day.”
There is a bit on outdoor infrastructure, the city’s history of millionaires, Loll Designs, Bob Dylan and the Duluth Rowing Club. It mentions the record-setting winter of 2013-14, with its 23 consecutive days with low temperatures below zero.
“Duluthians seem to thrive on extremes,” wrote Stephanie Pearson, who according to the article’s final anecdote grew up skiing at Chester Bowl and exploring Hartley Field.
Duluth cruised to victory in the final round of the online voting, which closed June 15, drawing 66,758 votes to 54,875 for Provo, Utah. Duluth earlier had defeated Columbia, Mo.; Athens, Ohio; La Crosse, Wis.; Minneapolis, Minn.; and Asheville, N.C., in head-to-head competitions to reach the final.
Throughout the rounds of voting, Duluth’s hiking, skiing, biking, kayaking and other outdoor assets were promoted by a social media campaign, with a #VoteDuluth tag used on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The city previously was featured in Outdoor’s “Best Towns” list in 2007 and as on the magazine’s list of “Dream Towns” in 2001.
Along with securing Outdoor’s “Best Towns” title for the 2014 calendar year, Duluth, Minn., was also named one of seven best coastal college cities by coastalliving.com. Duluth’s avid year-round outdoor activities were once again cited, and attention was given to surfing on Lake Superior. UMD and its James I. Swenson Science Building are highlighted as ways the city pays tribute to its shipping heritage, while also calling attention to the school’s more than 100 professional offered classes from nonprofit development to caregiving.
Information for this article was pulled from an article originally published in the August 6, 2014 issue of the Duluth News Tribune titled “Duluth graces the cover of Outside magazine’s ‘Best Towns Ever’ issue’” written by Christa Lawler.