If you live in a more northern area, consider midlands or easterns as your option so you can house them outdoors and they can hibernate naturally without the hassles of bringing them in. Painteds of various subspecies can survive any continental US weather zone, so perhaps picking the one most suited to yours would give you the best result. If you are more concerned with size, southerns are the smallest. For activity, they are all pretty mobile critters, but I think easterns are the fiestiest (be careful with multiple male easterns, make sure they have lots of space so they don't fight to often over the ladies). Color-wise, the westerns are definately the most colorful... something for everyone I guess.