USA Today has released its list of the Top 10 Small Towns in the Midwest, and two of them are right here in the great state of Michigan.

That's great, but they missed some.

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What makes for a great small town anyway?

Charming and kitschy downtown shops? Storied history? The friendliness of the locals?

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The appeal of a small town is obviously going to vary from person to person, so it's all of those things and more.

Michigan's Best Small Towns

USA Today's expert panel and readers picked two Michigan locations among the 10 Best Small Towns in the Midwest. (A town was considered "small" if its population was 25,000 or less.)

Traverse City was picked as #8. They pointed to Sleeping Bear Dunes, the cherries, the wineries, and the abundance of winter fun to be had. Fair enough.

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A downtown aerial shot of Traverse City, Michigan. Photo via Canva
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Petoskey landed at #4. USA Today marveled at its natural beauty situated along the shore of Lake Michigan, as well as the nearby Bear River Valley Recreation Area. What's not to love?

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Photo via Canva
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Maybe we're biased, but Michigan deserves more entries in the Top 10 than that - no disrespect intended to the rest of the Midwest. Well, maybe.

Great Michigan Small Towns That USA Today Missed

How could they leave out Saugatuck? If they're so in love with shoreline cities, this is low-hanging fruit they missed. Saugatuck's natural beauty and charming downtown area rival that of the other cities.

RELATED: 13 Small Towns Named Michigan's Best Getaways

And what about Frankenmuth? Michigan's "Little Bavaria" is almost like stepping into Europe. The town leans hard into its German roots, and is a Christmas mecca. There's no other small town in the Midwest (or anywhere else) quite like it.

And neither Mackinaw City nor Mackinac Island makes the list? Now you're just being silly.

What other small Michigan towns do you think should have been contenders?

The 100 Worst Small Towns in Michigan

Discover Michigan's worst small towns through RoadSnacks.net's latest rankings, examining crime rates, education, employment, and more. RoadSnacks.net delved into factors like population density and unemployment using FBI data and the Census. With updated research for 2024, uncover the least desirable locales. Explore why low crime, education, and stable economies matter when choosing a hometown as we count down the 100 Worst Small Towns in Michigan.

Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

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