It's a shame the no accent troll has ruined this thread so I'll try to help steer it back on topic.
I lived in the Twin Cities for 15 years - 7 as a renter in the Uptown neighborhood in Mpls and 8 years as a homeowner in St. Paul's Cretin-Durham Hall neighborhood. I eventually grew tired of the long cold winters and moved south several years ago, but I can honestly say I really enjoyed my time there and think the OP will, too.
I've always said what impresses me most about the Twin Cities is how livable the cities themselves are. Most major cities only have a handful of narrowly defined areas that are safe to live in, but the Twin Cities are full of charming, livable neighborhoods that make living in the city not only possible but desirable. Since NYC is also full of livable neighborhoods the OP might not appreciate it as much, but having grown up in Kansas City where urban blight made city dwelling impossible in all but a handful of areas, there's something unique about Mpls-St. Paul and its well kept neighborhoods.
The overall quality of life is another outstanding feature. Other posters have mentioned how clean the cities are, and it's true. There are lakes EVERYWHERE, and people take full advantage of them. When I lived in Uptown I went to Lake of the Isles-Lake Calhoun-Lake Harriet at least 2-3 times a week, and I wasn't even what you'd call an outdoor person! Perhaps it's the long winters that make people embrace the outdoors, but they do it in winter as well. They groom the neighborhood lakes for ice skating and even have warming houses to change and store your shoes. I think both cities spend a lot of money on their parks and take pride in the cities' overall appearance, and I have to say it always struck me as nice to actually see my tax dollars being put to good use.
The people are definitely nice, but I can't really say they're friendly. Scandinavian reserve is very evident, and while the "Minnesota Nice" label is somewhat of a myth (it's more akin to politeness), you can see where it comes from in the reserve that is such a big part of the Scandinavian culture. That reserve is also evident in their sense of humor, which has a sweet and gentle ring to it. That's one thing the OP will notice right away - accent or not - the people don't have an edge or hardness like they do in NYC. They are, as others have said, overwhelmingly educated and upwardly mobile. They're not overtly friendly but they're nice, and it made living in the Twin Cities incredibly easy.
Since the OP is coming from NYC it's hard to tout the arts by comparison, but the theatre scene is thriving. I had season tickets to the Guthrie Theatre and Minnesota Orchestra and enjoyed them both a great deal. I also liked sitting outside Orchestra Hall for dinner and outdoor concerts during the Aquatennial. Things like that are in abundance there - there is a high demand for the arts, cultural events and outdoor recreation, which contributes to the high quality of life I mentioned earlier.
I always made fun of the food, saying the state motto was "not too spicy now!" But the truth is there are a lot of good restaurants and there's no shortage on types of cuisine. The best restaurants take advantage of fresh Midwestern crops and the abundant seafood in the state's 10,000 lakes.
There is a big gay population and as others have said, it isn't confined to a gay ghetto but integrated into every neighborhood. There are prissy little bitches and petty, provincial queens, and while the gay population isn't quite as diverse as I would have liked, the OP shouldn't have any trouble finding a nice group of friends. He certainly won't find a shortage of good looking guys!
So that's what I took from my 15 years in Mpls-St. Paul. Livable cities, great quality of life, wonderful attention to parks and outdoor activities, thriving arts scene, and nice people. If it weren't for the brutal winters I would have happily lived the rest of my life there! I hope the OP has as many wonderful experiences as I did