How to Win Budget Travel's Coolest Small Towns Contest!

Christopher Shane

The beautiful Front Street docks in Beaufort, NC, one of Budget Travel's Coolest Small Towns in America!

What does it feel like to live in America's Coolest Small Town? Over the years, a bunch of folks have been lucky enough—and cool enough—to find out by winning Budget Travel's annual Coolest Small Town in America contest. Ask the residents of recent winning towns like Lititz, PA, Hammondsport, NY, and Beaufort, NC (pictured above), how good that feels!

If you think your hometown—or your favorite small-town getaway!—has that awesome combination of edge and heart that we consider cool, we invite you to join in the thousands of nominations that are happening over at our Coolest Small Towns 2014 Nominations page!

We're thrilled to see so many enthusiastic readers from every corner of America stepping up to crow about their cool towns. At the moment, we've noticed that some regions of the U.S. are especially well represented—congrats, Virginia, West Virginia, South Carolina, and Utah for getting out the word! For those of you who live in other (equally cool!) parts of the country, we invite you to start throwing elbows as our nominations enter their final weeks. Type in the name of your town and tell us a little bit about what makes it cool!

And please remember, we're looking for American towns with fewer than 10,000 people (sorry, if your nomination exceeds that population we'll have to bump you from the list) and a certain something that no place else has—a world-class food scene, jaw-dropping locale, great music, innovative art, and the kind of community spirit that motivates supporters to take to Facebook, Twitter (use the hashtag #AmericasCoolestTowns to help spread the word from Budget Travel's Twitter feed!), Pinterest, and Instagram to propel their cool town to the top of the list.

Visit early, visit often, and, as always, keep it cool!

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