Madison, WI for six years while my husband did his graduate work. It was one of those good news/bittersweet moments when he was offered a job in Illinois, and we had to say good-bye to this beautiful and lively city. Madison is one of those places that enjoys an urban culture, yet maintains the homey ambience that smaller cities enjoy. If you visit, you'll hopefully get to take in a festival and/or food tour, the UW Arboretum and Olbrich Botanical Gardens, the free Henry Vilas Zoo, and the Madison Children's Museum. And there's also five lakes and 260 parks, world-class restaurants, and the very awesome Farmer's Market on the Capitol Square from April to October. I miss Madison so much!
Madison also is home to a wonderful indie bookstore, Room of One's Own, in the downtown area, and only a few blocks from the Capitol. You might also want to plan your visit around UW-Madison Continuing Studies Write-by-the-Lake Writer's Conferences and Retreat, which happens in June every year. This year's conference takes place June 16-20. Classes are offered for beginners as well as those at advanced levels. Since classes take place in the mornings, you have the rest of the day to explore the city.