A Snapshot of Bismarck/Mandan

2011 Gallup Polls ranked North Dakota as the state with the third highest overall well being in the whole nation.

Just across the Missouri River from each other, Bismarck & Mandan are cities of rolling hills, peaceful life, and surprising natural beauty. The people are uncommonly friendly, and the cities are easy to get around, safe, and packed with plenty of things to do.

But don't take our word for it. Here's what the experts have to say. Bismarck-Mandan is ranked:

  • #1 Least Stressful Place to Live (Sperling)
  • #4 Best Small Places for Business and Careers (Forbes)
  • #4 Safest Place to Live (Farmers Insurance Group)

In fact, the Bismarck-Mandan region's high economic growth rate and nation's lowest unemployment rate captured the attention of ABC News, which broadcast a segment recently on the area's "boomtown" status. You can watch the video report here.

You might expect Bismarck & Mandan to be sleepy little cities sitting out on the frozen prairie. But when you get here, you'll be amazed at what you find!

How to get here

Bismarck-Mandan is easy to reach by air or road. The Bismarck Municipal Airport has daily service from United Airlines, Delta Airlines, American Airlines, and Allegiant Air. For road warriors, Bismarck is the intersection point of Interstate 94 (which runs from Detroit to Billings, MT) and U.S. Highway 83 (a major north-south highway reaching from Canada to Mexico).

Eating Out

Whether you crave a Chicago-style pizza, gigantic burger, or formal restaurant experience, you can have it all because restaurants are everywhere in Bismarck. If you prefer national chains there's Applebee's, Buffalo Wild Wings, Famous Dave's, Johnny Carino's Italian Grill, Qdoba, Ruby Tuesday, Texas Roadhouse, and many more. Then there are the local favorites like A&B Pizza, Fiesta Villa, Kroll's Diner, The Bistro, and Space Aliens. And if you really want to impress someone - a date or maybe even your parents - then try one of the many new restaurants popping up in the downtown area such as Broadway Grille, Peacock Alley, Pirogue Grill, Fireflour Pizza, Humpback Sally's, or the Toasted Frog. 

Lots of Shopping

Just a few miles from campus, Kirkwood Mall is the area's ultimate shopping destination with nearly 100 stores ranging from American Eagle to Target to Scheels Sports. For an eclectic selection of everything from clothes to art you can hit the downtown boutiques or head north to Pinehurst Square, home to the likes of Old Navy, Best Buy, and T.J. Maxx.

Things to do

Whether you are looking for something to do indoors or out, there are plenty of options, all year long. Besides the miles of trails and water-ways, Bismarck-Mandan is home to six public golf courses, great parks, softball diamonds, rodeo grounds, Fort Lincoln State Park, Huff Hills Ski Area, Dakota Zoo, and lots of places to hunt and fish. If indoors is more your style, try Midway Lanes bowling alley, museums, galleries, local arts performances, or over 20 movie theater screens.

Places to go

The Bismarck Event Center, located right by the mall. There are always events happening like the PRCA Championship Rodeo, concerts ranging from the University of Mary Jazz Festival, concerts, Broadway shows, sport shows, and the list goes on. Or maybe you want a smaller, more personal setting? Then check out the Belle Mehus City Auditorium, home of the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony Orchestra. It's a striking historical facility that has hosted talent such as The Blenders, Shannon Curfman, Arlo Guthrie, Leon Redbone, and Leo Kottke.

You'll love it

You'll love Bismarck & Mandan and all of North Dakota, with its four distinct and beautiful seasons, and yearlong outdoor activities. It’s a safe and welcoming metro area that is growing and prosperous, but you can still drive pretty much anywhere in less than 20 minutes. Bismarck & Mandan are big little cities that can be enjoyed by people of all ages.