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Old 03-15-2010, 05:41 PM
 
4 posts, read 16,099 times
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Hello. We are thinking of moving from NYC to Atlanta. My wife and I are both 30-somethings. I am a doctor and she is a lawyer. We were born and raised in New Jersey.

My wife is sick of the cold weather, and after we were slammed this winter my wife says we move or I get the dog house. We want to stay in the East, and want a big city feel, but didnt want to go as far south as Miami. So, Atlanta fits the bill. We did research and my wife wont settle for anything less than Buckhead.

We want to join Peachtree Golf Club and we want to send our kids to Westminster or Lovett. What my wife is worried about is that as full-bred Sicilians with Jersey accents we wont be accepted in "Waspy" Buckhead, especially after Jersey Shore.

My younger cousin moved to Atlanta a couple of years ago and attended Westminister, and he has told me that some of the Buckhead kids called him a "guido" and the parents were very unfriendly to my aunt and uncle.

We will be stereotyped in Buckhead, or are the people accepting?

Will people be unfriendly to us at the Country Club?

Would we be better off in an area in Atlanta less "Waspy" than Buckhead?

Will our kids be made fun of?

Thanks for any responses!
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:09 PM
 
2,642 posts, read 7,236,537 times
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You need to move to New Orleans. They'd LOVE you there!

Actually, I'm Italian, of Sicilian descent (but I'm half Irish) and originally from the New Orleans area. The reason I mention it is because NOLA is mostly Catholic and there are a lot of loud happy people there. And your accent won't stand out. Ever heard a real New Orleans accent? It's very Bronxy with a southern twist.

Anyway, as for Atlanta, what makes your wife set on Buckhead? It's not the only good part of town. There are several good, safe, nice areas. Or is she set on super-upscale and plain old middle upscale isn't good enough?

Will either of you already have jobs when you come down here? Where will you both work? What's your budget for housing? Are you open to public schools at all (there are some very good ones in the city)?
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:49 PM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
1,861 posts, read 4,554,426 times
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You'll be just fine. :-)

Peachtree Golf Club is next to impossible to join! They have a total of 150 members and, unless you're the next CEO of Coca-Cola, you're unlikely to get in. It's on par with Augusta National as far as selectivity.
If you want to join a club in Buckhead, look at Piedmont Driving Club, Cherokee Town & Country Club, and Capital City Club.

If you're hoping for your kids to go to private school next fall, you've already missed the testing deadlines. At this late date, you'd have to call the Admissions folks and ask for special permission for a late application. Acceptance letters go out the first Friday in April. Sometimes, they are more willing to accommodate someone coming in from out of town, but Westminster, in particular, has WAY more applicants than they need, so they can afford to be picky!

If you're interested in Catholic school, we have some great ones! Marist, St. Pius X, and Blessed Trinity. Check those out as well as the Buckhead schools.

I'm not going to lie to you; there are women out there who do really fit the "Buckhead Betty" stereotype. It's not easy to break in with an established crowd anywhere, but as an example, ALTA (Atlanta Lawn & Tennis Association) is a great way to get to know people.

Just be yourself and don't worry about keeping up with the Joneses. Atlanta is a fun place to live.
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:04 PM
 
Location: North Fulton, GA
1,154 posts, read 2,269,688 times
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Have you and your wife actually spent time in the South?

My husband is Italian from Long Island but he has spent a lot of time in Mobile, Alabama and going on two years in Atlanta. We have daughters who have attended college at Wake Forest and UNC so he had a pretty good idea what he was getting into. It is still funny when people try to pronounce his EYE-talian name and get all flustered.

But, there is a huge difference between Buckhead and New Jersey or Manhattan or Long Island. I lived in New Canaan, CT so I am used to that setting. Buckhead reminds me of a southern Greenwich, CT.
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:40 PM
 
1,498 posts, read 2,545,321 times
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I thought id chime in since im also sicilian and have lived in atlanta my whole life. my parents are originally from the midwest and moved here in 1980 (also due to weather). since I was born here, i dont have a northern accent, but i do look very italian.

I didnt grow up in Buckhead but I went to a private school (Marist) and many of my friends were wasps from buckhead, since the school is 25% protestant. I also had friends from westminster, lovett, woodward, and pace academy.

To answer your question, I really dont think Buckhead is the right place for you to raise your family. Honestly, you wouldnt really fit in the buckhead country club scene. buckhead is like a bubble - some of my friends didnt even know where Dunwoody was - and the people that live there are generally homogeneous - 3rd or 4th generation atlantans/southerners, Wasps, lots of money, a buckhead country club membership and private school mandatory, sea island in the summer, house on lake burton, etc.

The parents of these kids would often look at me kinda funny when I told them where my parents were from, what my last name was, that we didnt belong to a country club, or that I was from Dunwoody. they were never outright rude, bc that would of course go against thier southern code of manners, but they were not exactly friendly either. In general, Buckhead parents like to hang with thier own, and neither I nor my parents made the cut.

none of the kids ever called me guido, but they did stereotype me, call me "wop" or say my dad was in the mafia, which didnt really bother me, bc they were my friends and only kidding around.

this being said, im sure if i had a jersey accent some of these buckhead people wouldnt even think to asociate with me. the fact that I was from Atlanta and went to private school was enough for the kids to be friends with me, but like i said the parents were another story, which if you want to make friends, this could be a problem.

Still, this shouldnt discourage you from moving to Atlanta. Check out Dunwoody or Sandy Springs, which are just as upscale but with more transplants and minus the snob appeal, and youd fit in fine at Dunwoody Country Club.
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:57 PM
 
33 posts, read 80,396 times
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For the most part, good private clubs in Atlanta are ridiculously expensive. You may be able to afford it with your profession. Atlanta is NOT a Catholic town. It's a big Christian church, right wing conservative city. If that works for you, great...if not, you may want to think elsewhere.

I'm from NY (I'm Irish Catholic...but I never go to church). I generally think that people from Atlanta are more anti-social than unfriendly. You won't get somebody flipping you off if you don't have your foot on the gas the millisecond the light turns green and stuff like that. But the majority of people in Atlanta just want to stick with their little clique of friends and not be bothered by outsiders, unless they went to the same college as they did and root for the same football team.

Personally, I think you could do a lot better than living in Atlanta, but that's a choice you have to make.





YAKUZA
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:13 PM
 
Location: Atlanta and St Simons Island, GA
20,895 posts, read 32,892,157 times
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I don't think 'acceptance' will be a problem, but your desire to join a club like Peachtree Golf Club indicates to me that you might have ambitions of working your way into the city's Old Guard...in my day, these families were referred to as the '400' (meaning the 400 most elite families in Atlanta).
I can tell you now that won't happen.
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:13 PM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,190 posts, read 29,573,979 times
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In reality, there are people moving from the NJ/NYC area into the metro Atlanta area every day. There have been days that I've done to events (festivals, etc) and actually heard more accents from the Northeast being spoken than native "twangs", and of the course the numbers are increasing every day. Yes, "old Buckhead" can be somewhat clickish even today. "New" Buckhead is composed of transplants and new money. The country club thing may or may not wind up being for you, but somewhere within the newer version of the Buckhead scene (or other metro spots) there will be a place for you.

One thing though: In your title/subject line you did include the word LOUD in your description. Now... that might be a problem in some circles here. I personally know a couple of people who are transplanted New Yorkers who live here - very nice folks, but they are loud when they talk (face to face, cell phones, etc), and yes, I will say, that when they leave a room, others who are near them have made comments like, "Dammit, why are they so freakin LOUD??", and even an "Obnoxious loud yankee" comment or two by locals. However, I've heard native New Yorkers complain about how loud some can be too - so I think "obnoxiously loud" is too loud regardless of your origins. If you video tape yourself, play it back, and then think, "Wow, we could be on the Real Housewives of New Jersey!!", then yes, you're too loud, and probably will need to self-install a shhhhhh button in your brain.

Overall though, as said above, you might be surprised how many folks from back home you run into here, so it shouldn't be a problem. One of the room Moderators (Bob) is from somewhere up in New Jersey I think - he'll chime in eventually. Heck, he moved North of the City into the relative boonies and no one's killed him up there (yet). Although I'll bet he's started to actually drink sweet iced tea by now. LOL
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:23 PM
 
Location: Atlanta and St Simons Island, GA
20,895 posts, read 32,892,157 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CMMom View Post
You'll be just fine. :-)

If you want to join a club in Buckhead, look at Piedmont Driving Club, Cherokee Town & Country Club, and Capital City Club.
Just to put a finer point on it, the Piedmont Driving Club is in Midtown and the Capital City Club is located downtown and in Brookhaven.
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:38 PM
 
Location: ITP - City of Atlanta Proper
7,794 posts, read 11,727,152 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yakuza Rich View Post
For the most part, good private clubs in Atlanta are ridiculously expensive. You may be able to afford it with your profession. Atlanta is NOT a Catholic town. It's a big Christian church, right wing conservative city. If that works for you, great...if not, you may want to think elsewhere.
If that were true, then how did Atlanta become the gayest city in America?

Magazine ranks Atlanta as America's gayest city *| ajc.com

Not to say there aren't gay conservatives, or gays that go to church, but yeah, the City of Atlanta is anything but a right wing conservative city. Even in the republican friendly Buckhead country club culture.

To the OP:

There are plenty of northerners in Atlanta. I don't have any official stats to back it up, but I'd be willing to bet that at least 1/4 of everyone living in the metro area relocated here from the Northeast. You will definitely not be alone or out of place.

As far as Buckhead goes, it's a very large area in the city as big as New York City Borough (in area). This section of city is a mix between old money, new money, highrise condo dwellers, white collar middle to upper class workers, right down to middle class folks. Then it is also big shopping destination for all around the city/metro and the entire southeast. Even Westiminister, Lovett and Pace aren't exclusive to the upper crust families in Buckhead and they all have students from all over the city. There were kids who grew up with me on the south side of the city (a decided middle, working class, dirt poor area) who went to those schools and rode the train back to the other side of the city.

I'll also mirror what Lovindecatur is saying about the exclusive old money set of Buckhead. They are exclusive and there is no way to work yourself into their group.

Last edited by waronxmas; 03-15-2010 at 09:52 PM..
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