Money Magazine‘s Best Places to Live issue is an annual must-read for parents. The mag’s criteria include the usual quality-of-life measures (employment statistics, crime rates), plus plenty of other family-oriented considerations, like school performance and street safety. This year, what caught my eye was another parenting consideration altogether. Numbers 1 and 2 on the list (Eden Prairie MN and Columbia/Ellicott City MD) seem like great places to raise a solid kid. But Best Place to Live #3 has proven to be a prime location for raising a future celebrity. The list of celebrities born in Newton MA, right outside of Boston, is astounding.
The Office co-stars B.J. Novak and John Krasinski played Little League together in Newton, and both graduated from Newton South High School in 1997. “I think John started acting as a direct result of my casting him in the senior show,” Novak told the Boston Globe. Prior to the senior show Krasinski had been a “normal, popular kid,” Novak said. And after? Hollywood comic royalty.
Other Newton natives include Matt LeBlanc (who graduated from Newton North High School), comedian Louis C.K., Law & Order: Criminal Intent‘s Kathryn Erbe, producer/writer/actor Eli Roth, and the late Jack Lemmon.
Also a draw for parents of all stripes: Newton has the benefit of being a quick hop into Boston while also featuring its own thriving downtown (and my all-time favorite bookstore, Newtonville Books). Plus, there’s a brand new high school opening this year. The school cost a whopping $197 million to build. What do you get for $197 million? For one thing, a rock-solid theater department.
Check out the whole Money Magazine list, and let us know where you’d want to live.