Known as the "Twin Cities" of central Illinois, Bloomington-Normal, Illinois is the perfect setting for those seeking an urban lifestyle in a country setting. Centrally located between Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis with a population of more than 125,000 residents, Bloomington-Normal is the twelfth most populous city in Illinois and the fifth largest outside the Chicagoland area. Bloomington has served as the county seat of McLean County since the county was founded in 1830 and the entire area sits at the crossroads of the largest interstates in Illinois: I-74, I-55, and I-39.
As the corporate home of State Farm Insurance and the only North American Mitsubishi Motors plant, the residents of Bloomington-Normal also enjoy a diverse and robust economy. The city is also well-known for the numerous educational opportunities it provides. Both Illinois State University and Illinois Wesleyan University are located here as are numerous local community and technical schools. In 2011, this community was named as one of the the "Best 100 Communities for Young People" by The America's Promise Alliance and the only city in Illinois to receive this national honor.
Bloomington-Normal is also a cultural and historical hotspot. Over 1,100 acres of public parkland and a multitude of museums and galleries are scattered throughout the city and the U.S. Cellular Coliseum provides residents with access to some of the largest touring performances in the area. The city is also host to a number of local sports teams including hockey and indoor football.
Located in the heart of central Illinois, Bloomington-Normal offers a wide range of educational opportunities for students of all ages from pre-K through post-college. Bloomington Public School District 87 and Bloomington Public School District Unit 5 serves over 15,000 students a year in thirty different schools. In addition, families in the community have access to over 30 private schools including Illinois State University Lab Schools, Thomas Metcalf School (Grades K-8) and University High School (Grades 9-12).
For those who wish to continue their education after high school, you will be happy to know that Bloomington-Normal is the home of Illinois State University , Illinois Wesleyan University , Heartland Community College , Lincoln College , and a number of trade and technical colleges.
Shopping & Recreation
As the fifth largest city in Illinois, Bloomington-Normal is a hot spot for some of the best shopping and entertainment in the state. Whether you are looking for upscale restaurants and apparel to home-style cooking and a good pair of blue jeans, the city's shopping districts provide it all.
Looking for a little entertainment and recreation? No worries. Bloomington has a wide range of activities from water parks, rock climbing, ice skating, hiking, horseback riding, bowling, and more. The music lovers will enjoy catching a live concert at the recently built U.S. Cellular Coliseum , located in the heart of the downtown area. Braden Auditorium on the campus of Illinois State University is also host to a variety of national and regional touring performances.
For those who love being outside, the Bloomington Parks & Recreation Department currently maintains three golf courses and over 40 park sites featuring playgrounds, soccer fields, baseball/softball diamonds, public swimming pools, tennis courts, and more. For those sports lovers, the city has hometown hockey, football, and baseball teams.
Arts & Culture
In addition to recreational activities, Bloomington-Normal also provides a rich artistic and cultural experience for those who seek something a bit different. The city is home to the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts , the Illinois Symphony Orchestra , McLean County Arts Center, Community Players Theatre , Castle Theatre, McPherson Theatre, Normal Theatre, and the USA Ballet, to name a few. Annual events around town include American Passion Play, the Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Lincoln's Bloomington Festival, and the Spring Bloom Arts Festival.
For the history buffs out there, the community is home to a number of state and national historic sites including Ewing Manor, the McLean County Museum of History , the Prairie Aviation Museum, Evergreen Memorial Cemetery, David Davis Mansion, McLean County Courthouse, Vrooman Mansion, Stevenson House, and the Miller-Davis Law Building. And parents, have no fear... Bloomington is also home to the Children's Discovery Museum.
No matter what faith you may practice, Bloomington-Normal provides over 100 different churches and other places of worship.
Located in the heart of Illinois, Bloomington-Normal has a wide variety of residential opportunities for families of all sizes. The city is surrounded by a number of small town communities and farmland, but with the amenities and access of one of the largest cities in Illinois. Whether you are seeking a small apartment, a starter home, or a larger residence, this community has it all.