What makes a city "exciting"?

When I first came across this blog post about the 10 Most Exciting Cities in America, I was skeptical. Of course the usual players were there (San Francisco, New York, etc) and a couple of my personal favorites were represented (Portland and Boston). But I was shocked to read the #1 spot went to Oakland. Really? I like Oakland and I have a lot of friends who live there and love it and I know they have a blossoming foodie scene going on, but the most exciting city in America? 

But then I read the criteria they used and it all made much more sense. And it also challenged my thinking a bit on what makes a city truly exciting. Here is the criteria they used: 

  • Park acreage per person
  • Percent of population between 20 and 34 years old
  • Fast food restaurants per square mile (the fewer the better)
  • Bars per square mile
  • Big box stores per square mile (the fewer the better)
  • Population diversity
  • Movie theaters per square mile
  • Museums per square mile
  • Theater companies per square mile
  • Music venues per square mile

What do you think makes a city exciting?