|acine, Wisconsin, is a classic Midwestern city with a diverse population of 80,000 people that value family, hard work, education, the arts, and the Green Bay Packers, although not necessarily in that order.
Racine is located in the southeast corner of the state on the pristine shores of Lake Michigan.
Ninety minutes to the south is Chicago. Thirty minutes to the north is Milwaukee. And ten minutes to the west is postcard-perfect farmland, quaint little towns and dozens of small recreational lakes that make up Racine County.
For many folks here, this closeness to the big cities and the natural beauty of the lake, combined with all that Racine itself has to offer represents a perfect balance.
In addition to a high quality of life enjoyed in Racine, its residents enjoy a low cost of living. Good salaries and low housing costs are two key factors at work. Nationally, Racine ranks in the middle of 379 metropolitan areas that Moody's Economy.com tracks with statistical measures like income, job growth and housing values.
Racine is part of one of the nation's largest and fastest growing residential, industrial and service corridors that extends from Chicago to Milwaukee. Large manufacturers dominate Racine's economy. They include S.C. Johnson & Son, Twin Disc, and Modine, all with operations in or near Uptown Racine. Hundreds of smaller manufacturing and service businesses thrive here.
While still a factory town, as it has been for most of its 160 years, Racine has started to embrace tourism to help drive a large portion of its economy.
With its abundance of galleries, museums and working artists, Racine's art tourism has become well-known and a successful niche. A recent New York Times article highlighted this trend.
One of the key developments in the city's economic transition was the construction of an enormous boat harbor on Lake Michigan in the mid-1980s. This development proved hugely successful and helped to revitalize downtown Racine which has experienced a remarkable resurgence in recent years.
We are lucky enough to experience all four seasons in their full glory and the natural cycle of summer/fall/winter/spring gives life in Wisconsin a beautiful rhythm. From summer's heat, cooled on our blue wave beach, to rich fall colors, to beautiful winter snows, to the glorious tulips of Spring - the weather in Racine can inspire any artist.
There is no shortage of things to do in Racine. The Racine County Visitor's Guide offers a handy look at everything to do throughout the year in Racine and neighboring towns. Click here to download a high resolution version of the Racine County Visitor's Guide.
By Air: General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee, 25 miles north of Racine. Also nearby: Chicago's O'Hare International Airport (60 miles south of Racine) and Midway Airport (80 miles south of Racine).
By Rail: Amtrak serves the greater Racine area with a station in Sturtevant, WI, (10 miles west of downtown Racine). Chicago's Metra commuter rail extends to Kenosha, WI (10 miles south of Racine), although a plan to extend Metra into Racine is under discussion.
By Car: Interstate Highway 94 is accessible 10 minutes west of downtown Racine and extends south to Chicago, north to Milwaukee, and northwest to Madison, WI, and Minneapolis, MN.
Uptown's very own Corner House is one of the best and most popular restaurants in Racine.
1521 Washington Avenue
Official site of the City of Racine:
Things to do and see in Racine, presented by the Racine County Convention and Visitors Bureau:
Also on that site, a collection of short video clips highlighting Racine neighborhoods, parks and events:
An exhaustive guide to everything and anything Racine, past and present:
Also on that site, a quirky "Tour of Racine":
Information about Racine's vibrant downtown area:
The online edition of Racine's daily newspaper The Journal Times: