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The suburbs are a perfect blend of urban proximity and small-town feel. But what makes a good one?

The suburbs are a perfect blend of urban proximity and small-town feel. But what makes a good one?

Since the baby boom began in the 1940s, the suburbs have been a place for families to live and work. Their close proximity to urban business centers and small-town feel give them the perfect blend of convenience and comfort. The iconic image of a moving company van pulling up in front of a small house with a white picket fence to bring a new family to the block is a part of the American experience. But what makes a good suburb?

Recently, CNBC, with the help of Neighborhood Scout, laid out some of the best suburbs in the country. They based their decisions on crime rates, schools and cost of living. Topping the list is the middle-America suburb of Edmond, Oklahoma. Located just outside Oklahoma City, the town of 81,000 people boasts a crime rate lower than 71 percent of the rest of the country and an unemployment rate of just 4.9 percent.

Travelers along historic Route 66 might be familiar with Edmond. In addition to its proximity to Oklahoma City, the town itself features more than 200 holes of championship-level golfing, according to the city's website. In fact, Edmond hosts a number of events for the Professional Golfers Association and the United States Golf Association. Residents can also take advantage of the city's many soccer fields, ice skating rinks and tennis courts. Median house prices in the area hover around $201,000, making Edmond an affordable place to call home.

For those who like the price of Edmond but are looking for more of a small-town feel, Circle Pines, Minnesota, might provide a good alternative. The town of 5,407 has an excellent school system and plenty of job opportunities in math and computing, and the median home price is around $204,000, according to CNBC. A higher percentage of Circle Pines residents work in those fields than 95 percent of other U.S. communities, and with an unemployment rate of 6.5 percent, the job market in this tiny town appears strong.

Circle Pines is a great place for nature lovers, as well. Just 15 miles north of the Twin Cities, much of the town is covered in wetlands and forests, but don't let the outdoorsy feel fool you - Circle Pines has all the features of a suburb. Founded as a cooperative in 1946, it is the only suburb that operates its own natural gas delivery system, which could make things more reliable during those cold Minnesota winters.