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Rochester, MN

Located in the heart of Olmsted County and situated along the banks of the Zumbro River, Rochester, Minnesota has a population around 97,000. Originally founded in the mid-19th century by a group of U.S. surveyors, the city is now the business and cultural focal point for southeastern Minnesota. Rochester is also world renowned as being the home of the Mayo Clinic, as well as for its high-tech industries and excellent schools.


Rated by Money magazine in 2000 as the nation's best small city to live in, Rochester has gained prestige from its local health care system, which is considered to be one of the finest in the world.

Not surprisingly, the most prominent industry in Rochester's economy is health care; more than two million people travel to the Mayo Clinic each year to seek medical treatment. Once a five-story brick building, the center now covers about 10 million square feet and is the major employer in the region.

The second largest employment division in Rochester is wholesale and retail trade. Rated one of the top entrepreneurial cities in the country, Rochester boasts a manufacturing industry that employs nearly 15 percent of the city's labor force. Manufacturing companies produce machine parts, computer components and electronics, and food and dairy products. Additional areas of growth in the economy include metal fabrication and agriculture. The local economy of Rochester is further enlivened by printing, packaging and construction businesses, as well as entertainment and communications facilities.

Agriculture continues to be important for Rochester's economy. Farms in the Rochester area produce a variety of fruits, corn and soybeans, while dairy farms produce milk. Rochester-based Marigold Foods produces Kemps brand ice cream.

Additionally, computer industry leader IBM is a major employer in Rochester.


Most of the population from Rochester is urban. The city accommodates about 35,220 houses with little less than 34,000 houses occupied by owners or renters. The renter-occupancy ratio for the city is 29 percent.

Some of the city's prominent neighborhoods include:


The Mayo Foundation runs many of Rochester's most prestigious schools:

Rochester also has a number of degree-granting academic institutions outside of the medical field:

Rochester offers additional options for higher learning, including the Minnesota Bible College, which enrolls students seeking degrees in professional ministry.


Rochester has two major newspapers:

Monthly journals based in Rochester include Fertility and Sterility, which concerns reproductive medicine, and the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Additionally, the Journal of Andrology is a bimonthly publication that offers articles on the male reproductive system.

Rochester has a number of local radio stations:


Rochester has a vibrant arts and culture scene:

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