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Kid-friendly and homey locations

While some Northeast real estate comes with large price tags, some areas in Rhode Island in other states are still affordable and kid-friendly.

While some Northeast real estate comes with large price tags, some areas in Rhode Island in other states are still affordable and kid-friendly.

Annual lists of best places to raise kids often include familiar places: suburbs of America's largest cities, with family-friendly streets still in reach of all the benefits of urban areas. However, a new list from Businessweek and Bloomberg may mean more moving trucks on the streets of America's smaller towns.

The news sources analyzed 2010 data from real estate information and technology company Onboard Informatics, evaluating 5,418 towns and cities across the country with populations larger than the state median but no bigger than 50,000 people. The cities that made the list are inhabited mostly by middle-income families, with good public schools, low crime and modest resources to keep families entertained.

Indiana's top city is Centerville, with a population of 2,067 and a median family income just shy of $55,100. The quaint area is 65 miles from Indianapolis, and it's served by two elementary schools, one junior high and one high school. The village sits on Indiana's Antique Alley, which is dotted with antique and specialty shops.

In Rhode Island, Bloomberg and Businessweek said Wakefield-Peacedale is a great place to raise kids, with lakes and ponds, bike paths and sandy beaches. Although the Northeast can be a pricey place to raise kids, the villages are still affordable. They sit 45 minutes from Providence - have a population of about 8,530 and a median family income of $80,330.