Hopkinton #6: RI’s Best Communities 2012

Friday, June 29, 2012


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Is anyone detecting a trend? Both Richmond and this lovely southern town, quiet and rural, have both taken up residence in GoLocal's Best Communities Top 10. Something is happening in South County--and much of it has to do with combining quiet, old-fashioned town life with excellent public schools.

Hopkinton may have been a hub of early Rhode Island life when it was a stagecoach center, but now this small town on the Pawcatuck River is a getaway community that takes full advantage of the Chariho Regional School Districts high-performing schools (all three towns enjoyed a #3 ranking in Education in 2012, up from #6 in 2011). And of the three towns, Hopkinton is the most affordable, moving up 10 whole spots to #7 in the state. The combination of that kind of Affordability with those kinds of public schools? Look for Rhode Islanders with kids to be househunting in Hopkinton this weekend. Need more reason to check it out? Hopkinton jumped 7 spots in Safety rankings this year, up to #3.

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Hopkinton by the numbers

Established: 1669
Population: 8,188
Median household income: $71,104
Median housing price: $225,000

2012 Best Communities rankings

Overall ranking: 6
Affordability ranking: 7
Education ranking: 3
Economic condition ranking: 22
Safety ranking: 3
Arts & Culture ranking: 14
Restaurants & Bars ranking: 37

History in a nutshell:

In conjunction with Richmond and Charlestown, Hopkinton was established in 1669 as part of the town of Westerly. Eventually however, the people petitioned to have it separated and on March 14, 1757, Hopkinton was incorporated. The town was named in honor of the then-governor of Rhode Island, Stephen Hopkins. Prior to Hopkinton’s incorporation as its own town, there is evidence that the lands were heavily inhabited by Indians. Today, Hopkinton is a mostly rural town with great pride in its history. There are numerous fresh water fishing spots, campgrounds, and parks. These areas make Hopkinton a desired vacation area for many locals and tourists alike.

Famous residents:

John Wilbur, Quaker minister
Prudence Crandall, taught first desegregated classroom in USA
Billy Gilman, youngest country western star
Both the Aldrich and the Rockefeller families built small mansions in Hope Valley before the families merged. The Rockefeller house now serves as the rectory for St. Joseph's Parish

Famous residents source: Wikipedia

For more Best Communities coverage, don't miss GoLocalTV, fresh every day at 4pm and on demand 24/7, here.


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