Boston, Delray Beach Named in Top Ten Sober Living Cities
Huffington Post and addiction and recovery news website The Fix dubbed ten US cities as the “best” for sober-living. Each city is listed with its unique contribution to wellness and recovery:
Boston, MA: While it is known as one of the “booziest” cities in the United States, Boston also boasts over two thousand meetings. Additionally, it has a “commitment exchange” program which allows AA groups to send their members to other meetings. These so-called “Twelve Step field trips” allow members to stay within their own home group, but also to branch out and expand their sober networks.
Delray Beach, FL: In 2008, the New York Times dubbed Delray Beach “the country’s largest and most vibrant recovery community.” In this sunny South Florida town, over 5,000 people attend 300 Twelve Step meetings each week. Delray Beach has a recovery radio show, motorcycle club and even a coffeehouse that has its own therapy group. Additionally, because of the town’s tourism-focused economy, there are many jobs available to get recovering addicts back on their feet.
Houston, TX: Houston is home to many dedicated venues, called Twelve Step “clubhouses,” that allow sober or recovering addicts can spend their free time, attend meetings, and meet other people. These clubhouses are similar to the bar scene—without the alcohol. In addition, Houston houses over 580 AA groups which hold approximately 2,400 meetings every week.
Los Angeles, CA: California is home to the most hip and thriving culture of sobriety in the country. Los Angeles hosts 3,100 Twelve Step meetings a week where it’s quite possible to run into recovering celebrities. A lot of these celebrities are circuit speakers who share their stories at large events—events that oftentimes appeal to younger people coming out of rehab. Los Angeles is also home to many luxury and high-end rehab and sober living facilities, such as Promises Malibu, where a private room can cost up to $100,000 a month.
Minneapolis, MN: Minnesota is sometimes jokingly referred to as the “Land of 1,000 Treatment Centers” because of its extensive number of facilities, including the popular and pioneering Hazelden. Minnesota also houses eleven out of the nation’s thirty-five public sober high schools. Minneapolis itself is known to have a broad range of educational, legal, and medical support for recovering addicts and alcoholics.
Nashville, TN: The “soberest city” in the United States holds 280 AA meetings every week and its citizens only consume approximately 8.92 drinks per week. The AA community in Nashville hosts a wide range of social activities, including “spring flings,” and “old-timer dinners” as well as picnics, campouts, and cookouts. Additionally, a “homemade ice cream contest” is held every June 10 to celebrate AA Founder’s Day.
New York City, NY: While the New York City “work hard, play hard” lifestyle can definitely be troublesome for people in recovery from addiction, its massive sober network and infinite variety of things to do make this city a great place to be. 4,000 AA meetings occur in the five boroughs every week and the various organizations mimic New York’s diversity by catering to such groups as agnostics and LGBTQ.
Portland, OR: Portland is home to AA groups with extravagant names like “Knuckleheads,” “Boys Night Out,” “The Spillover Meeting,” and “Bill’s Angels.” While these groups may sound as though their members are rougher and tougher, one Portland AA member attests that the “AA program is as hardcore” as the names suggest. Additionally, the youth recovery scene is quite large in Portland.
Prescott, AZ: Even though Prescott only houses 40,000 people, it has emerged as a prominent “sober city” because of its hub of detox centers, sober-living centers, and halfway houses. The Prescott Daily Courier estimates that 1,200 people are in active treatment every day—that’s one resident in thirty. Because it’s a town with such a focus on recovery, Prescott does its best to raise community awareness about the disease of addiction.
San Francisco, CA: San Francisco’s diversity and open-minded culture most definitely contribute to its recovery scene. Of San Francisco’s 588 weekly meetings, 20 percent have a focus on LGBTQ communities. In addition, the Bay Area hosts almost 500 Spanish-speaking meetings. Even the geography of the city creates a welcoming and cozy atmosphere for the many recovery groups that operate within it.
Wilkerson, M. (2012). The 10 Best Sober-Living Cities. Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/18/best-sober-living-cities_n_1528700.html?utm_hp_ref=addiction-recovery#slide=996120