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Old 11-23-2007, 07:53 PM
8 posts, read 39,320 times
Reputation: 14


Can you suggest a nice place to start a new life in AR? I prefer quiet and laid back community. I want to build a new home or buy a new home, and I am searching hard the MLS. I am in my late 30s and I have a "leave me alone" attitude so I don't mind other people's attitude and behavior.

In search of the Truth
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Old 11-23-2007, 09:12 PM
155 posts, read 577,406 times
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Van Buren is a nice city. About 21,000 or so, next door to Fort Smith which at the time is the second largest city in Arkansas. Low crime, cheap housing. Alma is close, also a nice little town of about 4k.
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Old 11-24-2007, 03:42 AM
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 15,903,769 times
Reputation: 7531
Gotta plug Russellville and it's...what, bedroom communities? LOL! We aren't big enough for suburban, the whole thing is suburban - but there are some very quiet and very small outlying towns (Atkins, Morrilton, Pottsville, Dover, Havana, Ola, London, Knoxville, Danville, Chickalah, Dardanelle) that are very small and very homey. Pope County historically has some of the lowest land and home prices in the state outside the delta and is in the foothills of the Ozarks. A little west is Clarksville and Lamar, then on west to Ft. Smith. Very, very low crime and what we consider to be an extremely low cost of living. We don't require much, which is good - there's a Starbucks...Ruby Tuesday and Cracker Barrel, Dixie Cafe, and a few other chains. Lots of small mom and pop diners. Shopping is limited to Lowe's, super Wal Mart, Penney's, Belk's, Hobby Lobby, and a bunch of little stores. The town is fairly well centered downtown around a restored depot but there's more shopping out east. Rumors of Target and IHOP abound but I haven't seen it happen yet. It is a dry county, so I don't know if that's good or bad for you. Blackwell is probably the closest liquor stop, about 20 miles away. I think there are about 8 places in the Pope/Yell County area that have a private license for $5/year, so it's not like there's no place to go. From Little Rock it is about 85 miles or so.

We transplanted here from Little Rock in 2000. Made a brief move to the Caribbean, but when we got the opportunity to come back to Russellville we were all over it. I don't think I'd want to live anywhere else. The only thing that I call a negative which probably isn't is that if you haven't lived here your entire life you are at a disadvantage. R'ville is full of folks who were born and raised here and they all know each other and have for the last million years. All that being said, we made friends very quickly. We live dead center of town on 3/4 acre and our neighbors are very friendly if wanted or needed and leave us alone otherwise. ConAgra and Nuclear One are the bigger employers.

To me, this is still small town America. Everyone really does seem to watch out for everyone else but we've never felt like we were being intruded on by watchful eyes. It doesn't take very long to know an awful lot of people in this town of about 30,000.

The only thing I would say, and I would say it for most areas of Arkansas - if you get out from a town be sure you can get back in if the weather turns bad or at least have enough stockpiled to get you through a period of icy roads. Arkansas all but shuts down for inclement weather....which is not a bad thing in my book!
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Old 11-26-2007, 01:57 PM
Location: The Rock!
2,370 posts, read 6,856,321 times
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I just gotta plug Fayetteville and NWA for the "leave me alone" attitude you're looking for.
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:35 PM
Location: College City, AR
27 posts, read 79,002 times
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Pretty much any place will let you be like that if you live far enough out in the country.
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Old 12-02-2007, 12:00 PM
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the Ihop in russellville is almost built its surpose too be open in a few more weeks, and there are a few things more poping up on park way, a new asian buffet, a hotel not sure what chain, and another little 3 store strip mall, so prob a few offices and what not will go in
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Old 12-02-2007, 04:38 PM
Location: AR
564 posts, read 2,064,766 times
Reputation: 605
Russellville is pretty good about leaving you alone, I've noticed. It's getting big enough now to where a good amount of people go about their own business. There are a lot of people who have been here for generations, and there are a few that seem to not want to talk to you unless they've known you for a long time (I've noticed that in college especially), so it should be fine. I would recommend living about 5-6 miles out of town too, that way you can have all the privacy you need.
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Old 12-03-2007, 07:45 AM
Location: The Rock!
2,370 posts, read 6,856,321 times
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Sam and under...i know you guys love Russellville and all. I didn't hate living there...but...it for sure wouldn't be high on my list. Here's why:
1) the city politics is more or less dominated by the old money families who are far from progressive.
2) this is a town where you will be asked what church you go to
3) the schools are very cliqueish (per my wife who attended from MS to HS graduation)

Now, to the good:
1) ATU is really looking great these days and growing rapidly in both the quality of education and number of students!
2) influx of new residents MAY help to break the stranglehold of the traditional power base.

Without knowing more about what the OP wants, this information may or may not have any relavence.
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Old 12-03-2007, 08:13 AM
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 15,903,769 times
Reputation: 7531
City politics are changing somewhat - the election of Tyrone Williamson for mayor was a surprise to many. I'm thinking the jury is still out on whether that was a good or bad thing. I like him, just not sure he's going to be mayor material.

Yes, you will be asked about church. Repeatedly. I tell folks I "do my own thing" - after that they sort of go away. It would be extremely difficult to explain my religious views to anyone so I don't try - and I am sure they are thankful for that.

I don't know about the schools except for what I hear through the grapevine - but isn't that actually the case at most schools? You have the jocks, the nerds, the stoners, the Goths...and then there is the Very Money-ed....I don't know, though, I don't have a kid in school here. Thank goodness.

Russellville itself may not be for the "leave me alone" person - but outside town - oh, yeah...I think Dardanelle is actually more "do not mess with my head" - and the further out you go toward Ola and Havana and some of the other small towns - well, you can get into areas where no one knows or cares that you're there. I think that can be true for most of rural Arkansas. I'd suggest the OP find the landscape that appeals to him and take it from there. If you truly want to be left alone you can surely find a spot somewhere in the hills...if you require any amenities at all and aren't living green and foraging for berries you'll have to find a town sometime, and most smaller towns in Arkansas are still concerned about where you go to church. That's just life in Arkansas.
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Old 12-03-2007, 08:26 AM
Location: The Rock!
2,370 posts, read 6,856,321 times
Reputation: 803
Good to hear about the politics. Russellville, in my mind is a linchpin city in the future development of Arkansas. It fills a geographic void between the central Arkansas metro and Ft. Smith. It's vital to get it growing and a progressive admin is priority #1.

On the schools, some of the stories my wife tells just makes it sound considerably worse than any other school I've heard about. This is like 15 yo info so take it with a grain of salt. Things may have a changed a lot.
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