Gay Columbia, Missouri: Tri College Town

Gay Columbia is a burgeoning center of hipster culture in the heart of Missouri. Located halfway between St. Louis and Kansas City, CoMO, as it is affectionately known, is a liberal college town of about 100,000.

Downtown is dominated by a triangle of higher education: University of Missouri (or Mizzou) on the south, Columbia College on the north and Stephens College to the east. This area makes up the downtown historic district, now known as "The District." This is where you'll find most of Columbia's nightlife, dining and shopping. There's a great indie film scene in CoMo, as can be witnessed at RagTag Cinema, in addition to an impressive indie music scene.

Like any reasonably trendy town in America, Columbia has a visible and active gay community. Columbia hosts MidMo Pride, the areas annual Pride Festival, which is widely supported by many of the local businesses. The established gay bars Soco and Arch & Column, are outside of The District, but are well-frequented. The bars and clubs in the district tend to be welcoming to all sorts. Not surprisingly, the scene is mostly young and college affiliated, and students dominate the nightlife in general.

Restaurants to check out