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Austin is America's third coolest city, not because of recreation

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Ask any Austin fitness buff what they love about their city, and they will likely mention Lady Bird Lake's Hike and Bike Trail, the Greenbelt or one of the many other trails that wind their way through the city. Even so, Forbes recent list of America's coolest city gives Austin a low ranking on recreation. The Live Music Capital of the World found itself ranked as third, a huge increase over last year's list where it was ranked 19th.

The city was given kudos for its ample arts and culture, which it was given its highest score. Also taken into consideration was the city's "foodie" culture and migration statistics.

Austin was beat out by Washington, D.C., which landed the number one spot on the 2014 list. The nation's capital was followed by Seattle, Washington, which made up for its low diversity ranking with a high recreation index.

Looking for a race to run in Austin? Check out the city's best races this year.

In the recreation index, Austin scored a 48. Compared to Washington, D.C., which received a 93, it's no surprise that the city fell far to the bottom with half the score.

Austin wasn't the only Texas city that received kudos for its coolness. Neighboring city Houston was ranked fourth while Dallas (11th) and San Antonio (15th) also made the list.

Forbes teamed up with Sperling's BestPlaces to come up with the ranking. To compile the results, the organization evaluated how residents would typically spend a Saturday, assessing which opportunities they had available to them from visiting local parks to live music venues. Using these factors combined with diversity, migration and population age, Sperling's created the ranking by evaluating the largest 60 metropolitan statistical areas.

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