Minneapolis via: wikipedia

The New York Times asked LGBT travel experts to identify “lesser-known or up-and-coming L.G.B.T. hot spot[s] that we may overlook when making travel plans.” Minneapolis made the cut:

Minneapolis: In May 2013, Minnesota became the first state in the Midwest to legalize same-sex marriage through the legislative process rather than a court ruling, and a year earlier, voters had rejected a proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. Not that politics alone is reason to visit, of course. “We’ve got dynamic restaurants and a very vibrant gay scene that is mixed in with the general population,” said Charlie Rounds, the board chair of the IGLTA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association. Mr. Rounds, who lives in Minneapolis, said that the theater scene rivals New York’s and that there are many gay-owned businesses, including exceptional restaurants. The politics do matter to some extent, though: “It’s important that we have marriage in California and New York, but it’s really important that we have marriage in the middle of the country,” Mr. Rounds said in a telephone interview. “We have to be able to live and breathe and work in the heartland. We can’t all live in Chelsea or West Hollywood.”

Other locations noted as overlooked LGBT hot spots include:

Eureka Springs, Ark.; The Florida Panhandle; Harlem, New York; Hawaii, the Big Island; and Pittsburgh

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Andy Birkey

Andy Birkey has written for a number of Minnesota and national publications. He founded Eleventh Avenue South which ran from 2002-2011, wrote for the Minnesota Independent from 2006-2011, the American Independent from 2010-2013. His writing has appeared in The Advocate, The Star Tribune, The Huffington Post, Salon, Cagle News Service, Twin Cities Daily Planet, TheUptake, Vita.mn and much more. His writing on LGBT issues, the religious right and social justice has won awards including Best Beat Reporting by the Online News Association, Best Series by the Minnesota chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and an honorable mention by the Sex-Positive Journalism awards.