Jackson | World’s Best Cities


Southern hospitality, civil rights, and the blues: some things are deeply embedded in Jackson’s very character. The City of Soul also stands out for hosting both the Dixie National Livestock Show and Rodeo (the largest such annual event east of the Mississippi River) and the USA International Ballet Competition. The Magnolia State capital is the sole North American city to stage the two-week long event that draws the world’s top dancers every four years. The engaged, arts-and-literature-loving town, home to Jackson State University made the Top 20 for Museums (at #15) and Convention Center Size (#16); the 333,000-square-foot Jackson Convention Complex right downtown is LEED-certified. State and federal governments, along with the University of Mississippi Medical Center, are major employers, while the city has identified advanced manufacturing, IT, and food processing among its targeted industries. Of several new developments is a 30,000-square-foot, $13-million project in the arts district of Fondren, a neighborhood in revival, that will include a tiki bar, bowling alley, burger restaurant, and more.