SOUTHPORT -- There are many attractive local towns that draw visitors and people looking to move away from the hustle and bustle of city life. For the second time, Southport is receiving some recognition by two authors who searched high and low for the best southern towns. A quaint downtown, beautiful sights, even perfect white picket fences -- no wonder Southport has been named one of the best 50 small southern towns. The ranking comes as no surprise to Kendall Crews, who has lived here most of her life. Crews said, "That's always been my ranking. I love Southport." She's says her town has a friendly and helpful atmosphere. "We have a lot of people who come into the store here who are first time visitors to Southport and they've just immediately fallen in love with it." Southport visitor Christine Beirne said, "I think it has a nice family feel. You can go for a walk, walk your kids in a stroller, walk with your friends." The Beirnes visited for their first time from Hampstead. They said they'll definitely be back. The book takes into consideration a population fewer than 25,000 people, healthcare, and attractions, to name a few. The local housing market and cost of living are also factors. One realty office says the median home sale price within Southport's city limits is about $450,000. Southport resident Harry Fowler said, "It's just interesting, the historical part and it's got a lot of good restaurants, I love to eat out." Fowler moved to Southport a month ago and says the recognition is exciting for the town. "I think it's great. I love this area and it's growing. I think it's good for the eastern coast of North Carolina," Fowler said. Fowler says one of the things he enjoys most about Southport is that it's quiet and laid back. Authors Gerald Sweitzer and Kathy Fields visited 150 towns in nine southern states when choosing the top 50.
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