Originally Posted by max
Lawrence is in Appleton, a very nice, very liveable place. Enjoyable place; strong music program and, I think, foreign languages. Carthage, originally in Carthage, Illinois, moved a number of years ago to Kenosha. . . which is in that whole booming Milwaukee-Racine-Kenosha-Lake County-Chicago ring of growth around Lake Michigan.
Iowa, as the other poster notes, really does superb with academics. Grinnell's conference includes Beloit, Cornell College, Knox, Monmouth, Carleton and the University of Chicago.
Carleton is in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) along with perennial Division III contender Gustavus Adolphus and a bunch of small, private (usually church-based (Lutheran and Catholic)) schools.
But, Grinnell and Carleton probably play every year.