Iowa City is a fantastic place to live, work, and make art. It is the hub of progressive and creative thought in the state of Iowa, and its main engine is the University. Around 75,000 people live in the town when school is in session. The most famous identifier for the area is the world renown Iowa Writer's Workshop, which is the University's creative writing graduate program, having been home to the likes of Kurt Vonnegut Jr., John Irving, Flannery O'Conner, Marilynne Robinson, Ann Patchet, Reza Azlan, and countless others. Iowa City is the only UNESCO city of literature in the united states, and a culture of creativity thrives in the area as a result.
This history has made the area a haven for artists as well, and it is unusually saturated with artists for a town of its size. It's a place that cares about diversity, wellness, and progressive thought. There are a wealth of eateries and bars, interesting shops, and organic groceries.