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Old 02-18-2016, 07:19 AM
 
16 posts, read 12,354 times
Reputation: 16

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Thanks all! I am really opening up to the idea. Especially this winter. Ask my in July and I might say something different. Cabot is looking like a great place to live. Does anyone have any input on what the following suburbs are like? We need great schools, but also convenience as we are a very active family and won't be sitting around at home much on the weekends:

Cabot

Maumelle

Conway

Bryant

Vilonia

Greenbrier

Benton

I'm looking for school info, and maybe just a little bit about what each suburb is kind of known for. We would also enjoy a neighborhood with lots of young kids for our kids to go outside and play with!
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Old 02-19-2016, 05:37 PM
 
284 posts, read 438,959 times
Reputation: 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggie731 View Post
Thanks all! I am really opening up to the idea. Especially this winter. Ask my in July and I might say something different. Cabot is looking like a great place to live. Does anyone have any input on what the following suburbs are like? We need great schools, but also convenience as we are a very active family and won't be sitting around at home much on the weekends:

Cabot

Maumelle

Conway

Bryant

Vilonia

Greenbrier

Benton

I'm looking for school info, and maybe just a little bit about what each suburb is kind of known for. We would also enjoy a neighborhood with lots of young kids for our kids to go outside and play with!
It looks like Maumelle is what you are looking for unless you are just against being that close to NLR and LR, in which case, Cabot would be your best bet. The other cities are a longer commute.

Maumelle has good schools, parks, and trails. The river trail is nearby, Pinnacle Mountain is just across the river, and it is accessible to lots of outdoorsy recreational places.

Maumelle also ranks #1 in Arkansas for highest incomes in the state and #1 in education level with the highest percentage of college graduates in the state.
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Old 02-19-2016, 09:34 PM
 
629 posts, read 391,461 times
Reputation: 875
What is your housing budget and desires as far as size of house (bedrooms, bathrooms, size of property, etc.) ?

Property taxes are pretty inexpensive ... Little Rock is about 0.007 to 0.01, $200,000 house is going to cost you about $1,000 a year in property taxes ... a $1,000,000 house somewhere between $7,000 and $10,000 per year.

The commute from Bryant would be hell ... Conway also (assuming your husband is working 8 to 5 ish).

Lots of people I know have their children in private schools ... either religious based or secular. Private schools here are reasonably priced, 1/3 to 1/4 (or less) of what they cost in the Northeast.
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Old 02-24-2016, 10:15 PM
 
Location: Sherwood, Arkansas
362 posts, read 1,022,033 times
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Maumelle is the best area on this list in my opinion, but if your kids are going to public schools, then the issues of the Pulaski County Special School District may cause you to look elsewhere - the school district is the same reason I would say no to Sherwood. Saline County(Bryant or Benton) are nice as well, but commuting to NLR from Saline County would suck, and commuting from Conway would be just as bad. I personally have issues with Cabot, but I think that Cabot would be a great fit for you and your family.
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Old 03-01-2016, 08:15 AM
 
7,006 posts, read 6,042,573 times
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Welcome to Arkansas! (yes, I'm in Kentucky, but I have strong Arkansas roots and many Arkansan cousins).

Just a suggestion: Conway, Benton, and most of the other towns you are considering are not locally termed "suburbs" (of Little Rock). They might be accurately termed bedroom communities, but each of them has their own distinct histories and personalities, which differ considerably from that of LR, and the citizens of these towns are proud of their towns' individuality and heritage. So when you actually get down to house-hunting on-site, referring to these towns as "suburbs" may not go down well.

Conway is a cool town, which has blossomed in various ways in recent years, but as noted, the commute to LR is a bear. A pretty bear, but nonetheless, a bear. Schools are said to be good.

Vilonia and Greenbriar are quite small. Vilonia schools are okay - I have young cousins who are Vilonia grads, and they did very well in college. If you choose one of these towns, you'd very likely find yourself going into Conway at least once or twice a week for essential shopping. Vilonia got hard-hit by a tornado a few years ago, but has recovered for the most part.

Benton is much closer to LR, but the commute could get old, and it is NOT pretty. The Interstate is lined with large signs and other evidence of lack of good zoning. The town itself is nice, however.

The western, older part of LR is beautiful, especially in the spring, but it is quite hilly, which could be a problem during the ice storms which seem to hit Arkansas every couple of years. There are several good private schools which are convenient to Pulaski Heights and its nearby neighborhoods. Houses in the Heights range from large Prairie foursquares and Colonial Revivals to smaller bungalows and Mission-style larger homes. There are lots of trees and the azaleas and dogwoods are spectacular in the spring (this is true of much of LR).

I would term Pulaski Heights a "suburb", btw. Although the houses are older (and well-maintained and very desirable), the area was deliberately developed in the early 20th century, as the higher elevation and tree cover made it several degrees cooler than much lower, flatter downtown Little Rock, which is in the Arkansas River floodplain and can be quite steamy in the summer. The Heights catch whatever summer breezes there are. You'll see lots of screened front porches and sleeping porches on the older houses there - good ways to keep cool in pre-air-conditioned days.

Good luck finding your new home.

Last edited by CraigCreek; 03-01-2016 at 08:30 AM..
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Old 03-01-2016, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Lake Oswego, Manhattan, Aspen
2,921 posts, read 3,449,591 times
Reputation: 9661
You and your situation sound PERFECT for Arkansas. Since your husband's job is in a good area, and since you all are totally dependent upon him, it would make sense to pick a good subdivision close to his place of work. Long commutes end up killing husbands (He needs time for rest and exercise, or he will die). And the stress of driving/sleep deprivation, etc., will make him less effective at work.

In the South, it's assumed that kids will have to go to private schools (one reason Middle Class Southern people have so few children). You're lucky in that you're Christians. Your kids will fit in, happily, in a Christian academy. These tend to be the cheapest private option. Little Rock is at the edge of the Midwest. But it's still Southern (bad demographics), and so, really, you have to take a Southerner's approach to life (The village will not raise your child for you, to anything but subhuman standards.) You have to pay for everything, and be responsible for everything. People from regions with better demographics don't seem to understand this about the South. You can't just have kids, in the deep, dark South, and assume that things will turn out alright. I know that Arkansas is better than Mississippi. Still, putting kids in public schools, even on the good side of Little Rock, leaves them at risk of ending up, to one degree or another, like the unspeakably-horribly-murdered Jessica Chambers (https://i.ytimg.com/vi/24bwIuI3mEY/hqdefault.jpg).

In the South, everything is about Church and football. If you're in an enthusiastic-enough Church, you can skip the football, to a degree. It sounds like you'll enjoy the enthusiastic churches.

Don't assume that smaller towns/rural settings equal safe/honest/good people. I know that's how it is, in Minnesota. But the South is entirely different. Frankly, the better people (in terms of bigger brains and winning life strategies) are in the South's better suburban neighborhoods. Pick the right neighborhood (look for lots of trees and shrubbery, and the absence of tricked-out vehicles), and you'll be around people every bit as smart and accomplished as people in Greenwich, Connecticut, or Wayzata, Minnesota. There are some 'upscale' people living on large tracts of land, out in the boonies. But you'd never meet them, since they're busy driving the children/grandchildren to private schools, private lessons, private EVERYTHING.

Oh, and if you get a job at your kids' private school, you may well get a substantial discount on tuition. It varies, from school to school.
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Old 03-01-2016, 11:23 AM
 
7,006 posts, read 6,042,573 times
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^^^ Sweeping generalizations, much??

Just curious, GrandviewGloria: how much time have you spent in Little Rock, or elsewhere in Arkansas, or elsewhere in the Southern United States? Have you just visited briefly, passed through, or did you actually live in any of these places? How many Arkansans do you know well? Do they know you equally well?

There is a grain of truth in some of your assertions, but much of what you wrote is very overstated.
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Old 03-01-2016, 11:55 AM
 
4,135 posts, read 5,169,025 times
Reputation: 5390
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrandviewGloria View Post
you have to take a Southerner's approach to life (The village will not raise your child for you, to anything but subhuman standards.) You have to pay for everything, and be responsible for everything.
Geez, GG...what in the world???

God forbid that anyone should have children and then have to pay for them all by themselves. (I personally do not want the village raising my child for me...and it didn't.)

I just don't know what else to say.
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Old 03-01-2016, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Lake Oswego, Manhattan, Aspen
2,921 posts, read 3,449,591 times
Reputation: 9661
Quote:
Originally Posted by Luvvarkansas View Post
Geez, GG...what in the world???

God forbid that anyone should have children and then have to pay for them all by themselves. (I personally do not want the village raising my child for me...and it didn't.)

I just don't know what else to say.
I have business interests in a number of places (including Arkansas). And I've done more than my share of relocating associates/affiliates/employees. From experience, I know that people from better parts of America have NO IDEA how challenging it is, to maintain a Middle Class existence in the South.

Until recently (with VOLAGS settling nasty immigrants in unsuspecting communities, and governors like that Vile...Sack creature in Iowa, deliberately importing inner-city criminals from the East, into previously wonderful towns like Des Moines ), the middle of America had basically one race, and one class, of people. Folks who have grown up in such a homogenous world are unprepared, in ideology, in experience, and in lifestyle habits, to cope with Southern stratification, and the very good reasons underlying that stratification.

Yes, Little Rock is vastly better than Pine Bluff. It's better than Alexandria (Louisiana). It's better than Jackson and New Orleans. It's better than Memphis. It's better than St. Louis. It's almost part of the Midwest. But it's not exactly Alexandria, Minnesota. Nor is it Bloomington.

The OP is a smart cookie. She realizes she's moving to a whole new world. In Minnesota, the Village basically WILL raise your child. (things are changing for the worse, even there, though) You can have as many kids as you can feed and clothe, because safe schools are free, the towns have public rec. centers which are safe, even for white kids. The differences are subtle but endless.

We Southerners (at least those who care about our progeny) know that you can only have as many children as you can afford to send to private daycare, private preschools, and private schools. We know that we have to insulate them from elements in our towns, who will act as meth recruiters, etc. We know that without summer jobs, they'll get caught in the 'Bad Kids Societal Undertow'. We have to inoculate them ideologically, against all the societal creeping rot which can infect kids. We have to be sure that they grow up with enough wealth status to keep them from dating and marrying problematic people. We have to be sure they understand how much all of this costs, so that they will only choose career paths which will ensure enough money. Southerners don't communicate the WHY behind what they do (as in the Midwest, it's not considered 'nice'). They just do it. They may not even realize they're doing it. YOU, surely, compensate, without realizing you do it.

Southerners have been trying doubly-hard, for generations, now. That's why Southern Society is so sharply divided. It's a Dichotomy in which near-perfect superachievers are in perpetual motion - making money; raising the kids really, really well; decorating the house; landscaping the house; saving; investing; exercising; networking; having great wardrobes; having great cars; dieting; excelling at cooking; continuing their educations; doing Church things; doing this doing that.... ...meanwhile, on the other side of the Dichotomy, people have basically given up - are breeding with whatever wanders across their paths; wearing shapeless clothes from WalMart; listening to whatever artists are pitched at them; eating whatever foods mass marketing places in front of them; smoking 'weed'; sitting in front of big televisions, watching cable; jumping on their riding mowers and mowing their bleak, shrubless, treeless yards; tearing around on ATVs; playing with their Pit Bulls; and allowing 'The Village' to raise their children.

Middle class Southerners work like crazy, to keep the rivers of money flowing, to ensure that their kids have what it takes. And that's only the beginning. There's so much more to it.

I could tell you stories about good families whose kids, for one reason or another, went to public schools: families who have BURIED THEIR CHILDREN. Just a little bullying - just a little 'Downward Assimilation' - just a little Stockholm Syndrome - just a few sketchy friends - and suddenly, somebody's hooked on drugs, somebody's having a baby with someone wholly inappropriate, somebody's killed himself because...

OP is smart and wise. She's voiced concerns. She knows it's a different world. I'm articulating what other people are too nice, and too good, to say. Articulating is key to planning and risk avoidance.
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Old 03-01-2016, 03:27 PM
 
36,691 posts, read 20,356,486 times
Reputation: 11079
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrandviewGloria View Post
I have business interests in a number of places (including Arkansas). And I've done more than my share of relocating associates/affiliates/employees. From experience, I know that people from better parts of America have NO IDEA how challenging it is, to maintain a Middle Class existence in the South.

Until recently (with VOLAGS settling nasty immigrants in unsuspecting communities, and governors like that Vile...Sack creature in Iowa, deliberately importing inner-city criminals from the East, into previously wonderful towns like Des Moines ), the middle of America had basically one race, and one class, of people. Folks who have grown up in such a homogenous world are unprepared, in ideology, in experience, and in lifestyle habits, to cope with Southern stratification, and the very good reasons underlying that stratification.

Yes, Little Rock is vastly better than Pine Bluff. It's better than Alexandria (Louisiana). It's better than Jackson and New Orleans. It's better than Memphis. It's better than St. Louis. It's almost part of the Midwest. But it's not exactly Alexandria, Minnesota. Nor is it Bloomington.

The OP is a smart cookie. She realizes she's moving to a whole new world. In Minnesota, the Village basically WILL raise your child. (things are changing for the worse, even there, though) You can have as many kids as you can feed and clothe, because safe schools are free, the towns have public rec. centers which are safe, even for white kids. The differences are subtle but endless.

We Southerners (at least those who care about our progeny) know that you can only have as many children as you can afford to send to private daycare, private preschools, and private schools. We know that we have to insulate them from elements in our towns, who will act as meth recruiters, etc. We know that without summer jobs, they'll get caught in the 'Bad Kids Societal Undertow'. We have to inoculate them ideologically, against all the societal creeping rot which can infect kids. We have to be sure that they grow up with enough wealth status to keep them from dating and marrying problematic people. We have to be sure they understand how much all of this costs, so that they will only choose career paths which will ensure enough money. Southerners don't communicate the WHY behind what they do (as in the Midwest, it's not considered 'nice'). They just do it. They may not even realize they're doing it. YOU, surely, compensate, without realizing you do it.

Southerners have been trying doubly-hard, for generations, now. That's why Southern Society is so sharply divided. It's a Dichotomy in which near-perfect superachievers are in perpetual motion - making money; raising the kids really, really well; decorating the house; landscaping the house; saving; investing; exercising; networking; having great wardrobes; having great cars; dieting; excelling at cooking; continuing their educations; doing Church things; doing this doing that.... ...meanwhile, on the other side of the Dichotomy, people have basically given up - are breeding with whatever wanders across their paths; wearing shapeless clothes from WalMart; listening to whatever artists are pitched at them; eating whatever foods mass marketing places in front of them; smoking 'weed'; sitting in front of big televisions, watching cable; jumping on their riding mowers and mowing their bleak, shrubless, treeless yards; tearing around on ATVs; playing with their Pit Bulls; and allowing 'The Village' to raise their children.

Middle class Southerners work like crazy, to keep the rivers of money flowing, to ensure that their kids have what it takes. And that's only the beginning. There's so much more to it.

I could tell you stories about good families whose kids, for one reason or another, went to public schools: families who have BURIED THEIR CHILDREN. Just a little bullying - just a little 'Downward Assimilation' - just a little Stockholm Syndrome - just a few sketchy friends - and suddenly, somebody's hooked on drugs, somebody's having a baby with someone wholly inappropriate, somebody's killed himself because...

OP is smart and wise. She's voiced concerns. She knows it's a different world. I'm articulating what other people are too nice, and too good, to say. Articulating is key to planning and risk avoidance.
Having lived in Minnesota, and having lived in Arkansas, I think your negative and alarmist posts reflect someone who is very biased.

While you are entitled to your opinions, the people who actually live in Arkansas are entitled to rebut them.
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