Home to approximately 119,000 full-time residents, Missouri’s fourth largest city is the educational, cultural and sporting epicenter of the state’s heartland. The combination of the city’s opportunities for entrepreneurs, including the cost of business, job growth rate and education have ranked the city as fourth on Forbes’ list of Best Small Places for Business and Careers. Several well-known companies also factor into the city’s growing economy, including Carfax, Shelter Insurance and Veteran’s United Home Loans, which were all founded in Columbia and maintain headquarters or facilities in the city. Columbia also is the home base for MFA Oil and Missouri Employers Mutual.
Proximity to many of the state’s resources and large urban metropolises make this “small town” feel much bigger. With easy access to Kansas City, St. Louis and the state leaders in Jefferson City, travel to and from Columbia is as simple as a drive down the highway.
Families, sports enthusiasts, and nature lovers will enjoy Columbia’s vast and varied outdoor activities, including hiking at Rock Bridge State Park, or walking, running or biking along one of Columbia’s many pathways and trails, including the 237-mile Katy Trail. Mizzou’s NCAA Division I sports teams allow fans to cheer on the Tigers in Fall, Winter and Spring sports.
Finally, explore the diverse culture and events of Columbia at many annual events, including the True/False Film Festival, Citizen Jane Film Festival, Roots N Blues N BBQ music festival and more. The vibrant downtown area is only a short walk from the MU campus and is a gathering place for families, adults and students to enjoy a show, dinner, music, shopping and more.