Nearest big city: Minneapolis
If you visit little Rosemount, Minnesota, one of the smallest towns on our list this year with just 25,714 residents, you’ll quickly notice the bright, green clovers that litter the streets. It’s a symbol emblazoned on fire stations, across the sky-high water tower, and splashed big and bold on the town’s welcome sign.
Rosemount High — the No. 3 high school in the county — is home of the fighting Irish. In July, the town hosts its annual Leprechaun Days celebration, a well-known 10-day festival with a fair, parade, live music, fireworks and a chili cook-off. There’s even a Blarney Stone Hunt where kids can hunt for pots of gold and a local pub called The Clover.
Rosemount goes deeper than its Irish-themed offerings, though. Its Haunted Woods Trail has been around since the 1980s, bringing in thousands of visitors each year — not to mention a stockpile of donations for the local food pantry (they’re recommended at the gate). There are also over 20 parks, dozens of community events and a dedicated arts council, which presents a full slate of theater performances, writers’ workshops and concerts. — Aly J. Yale