If you want a manageable city …
For a city with a spirit of social justice and an array of cultural offerings, try Topeka. The city opened Evergy Plaza in 2020, a central hub with free Wi-Fi where people can work or enjoy a monthly concert series, complete with food trucks and pop-up beer gardens.
This summer, Topeka Music Week will be held at venues across the city, culminating in Country Stampede, which is estimated to bring up to 100,000 country music fans to the city. (Proof of vaccination or a negative test is not required to attend, so consider your personal risk first.)
As home of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case, Brown vs. Board of Education, Topeka has a strong undercurrent of social justice, said Bob Ross, a spokesman for Choose Topeka, which lures remote workers to the city with financial incentives. One of his recommendations for long-term stays is Liberty House, an Airbnb rental which puts profits toward supporting L.G.B.T.Q. youth in the Midwest.
During their off time, people can explore the North Topeka Arts District, known as NOTO, which was restored in 2008 to include murals, galleries and restaurants housed in historic buildings.
Kelly Edkin, a fifth generation Topekan who owns a coffee shop and bistro called Juli’s Cafe, said she regularly sees remote workers there. She recommends people visit the Topeka Zoo and Conservation Center, or take advantage of the Kansas River, which flows through the city, or nearby Lake Shawnee for swimming, fishing or kayaking.
But what makes Topeka special, she said, are the people who live there.
“I really think the best part of any place you go, whether you’re working remotely or not, are the people and the attitude,” she said, adding that Topekans are “very friendly and helpful.”