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Old 06-07-2016, 09:40 PM
 
14 posts, read 34,455 times
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We have a possibility of relocating to Ridgecrest, CA due to my husband job. He's not in military but will work on base. I've been searching for info but can't find much and the info I found are quite old. We have 3 kids[5th grader, 2nd grader, and kindergartner for this coming fall]. Currently, we live in a small town outside of DC [2 hours drive]. Thank you in advance for taking your time to answer me.

1. What's the crime rate? Is it safe to live there? Is drugs problem very outrageously bad? On here, it's a mix review about the city but most threads are old. But people kept saying how bad the corruption is in Kern county and how awful some people were.

2. What are people like? On the old thread here, people mentioned about racism. Is it toward particular races?

3. Which neighborhoods are safe to live? We probably will rent but want to be in a safe neighborhood. I mean house rental- not apartment rental.

4. How are schools? I searched and found some good schools there. What are the kids @ those schools like? Are there lots of bullies? Do they have string & orchestra program there?

5. Are there many after-school activities? My children are in dances, sports, piano, and violins here. I've tried to call numeral places and they haven't returned my calls.

6. How's the medical service? Is the hospital good there? Any suggestion on pediatric doctor and pediatric dentist? What's about the vision doctors?

7. I heard that it's cheap to live there. Is that true? How's the utility cost? Is fixing the cars and such very expensive there? I look up and it doesn't seem to have much of car dealers. Are there any cable company and internet service that you can recommend?

8. Where do people go for shopping- food,and such? I only saw Walmart and 2 grocery stores. Is it Walmart Super Center?

9. In your opinion, is it worth to live there? Sorry that it sounds harsh but the city, where we live now, is really good. However, due to his possible new job, we want to get more info as much as we can to see if it'll be worth to move cross the country.
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Old 06-07-2016, 09:43 PM
 
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Oh and another question. Is there DMV in town? Is it very long waiting for that?
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Old 06-09-2016, 03:11 PM
 
2,222 posts, read 9,961,727 times
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I can't answer your questions other than to say I know someone who has lived in Ridgecrest for several years now and can't wait to get out. It's hot, dry, boring, etc. Her teens grew up there and couldn't wait to get out.

I believe for good hospital services, they had to go out of town.

I think you would have culture shock. If it was me, I would not choose to move there.
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Old 06-10-2016, 02:30 PM
 
14 posts, read 34,455 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beth56 View Post
I can't answer your questions other than to say I know someone who has lived in Ridgecrest for several years now and can't wait to get out. It's hot, dry, boring, etc. Her teens grew up there and couldn't wait to get out.

I believe for good hospital services, they had to go out of town.

I think you would have culture shock. If it was me, I would not choose to move there.
Thank you so much. I looked up the chamber of commerce there and found not much information at all.
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Old 05-10-2018, 12:46 PM
 
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Default I've lived in Ridgecrest 32 years. The pros and cons.

Hi there, I know this thread is a little old, but maybe my opinions can help someone else. I've lived here over 30 years.

Like any place, Ridgecrest has its pros and cons. I'll give you my two cents on what they are.


Generally safe. Yes, there is some crime. Please let me know of a community with zero crime if you know of one. Most of the crime here is petty crime. Very seldom do we have serious crime...serious crime (murder, etc.) does happen occasionally, but not often. We don't usually lock our house when we leave for the day, but I do live in an exceptionally safe area.

Housing cost, whether rental or purchase, is low, compared to the rest of the country, and especially compared to almost anywhere else in California. Check out Zillow for housing purchase information. You'll see just how far your housing dollar will go here. Check out the City Data for specific answers to demographics (race, education, income etc.) Those are facts to be had, not opinions. Ridgecrest, due to the base and it's scientists and engineers, has a very high education level. Lots of PhD's running around here.

Weather...MOST of the time, Ridgecrest is pleasant. We do have horrifically hot summers, which are hard on me, and get harder with each passing year. But I like the outdoors a lot. If you're an indoors kind of person, the weather won't affect you as much. I would say about 9 months out of the year, outdoor exercise is very great. I hike, run, walk, bike, geocache. In the summertime, I do these activities either early in the morning, or after the sun sets at night. There's nothing better than a summer nighttime walk or hike in the hills around the college. You do have to be aware of rattlesnakes...I see many each season in the hills above the college. They are quite easy to spot at night with a flashlight. In the daytime they blend in better. I have never been bitten, but one of my dogs has, and he almost died. Crestwood Animal Hospital saved his life. I have since taken both my dogs through the Rattlesnake Aversion Training, which works great.

Weather, continued. In the spring, it can get quite windy at times. This is an annoyance...I hate the wind more than I hate the heat. Basically you just suck it up and deal with it for a couple days. It always passes.

Fall and Winter...there's no better place I've been! I LOVE the fall and winter in Ridgecrest. The weather is nice, great for outdoor activities, usually the wind is not a problem, and it's not hot. We do have chilly snaps occasionally...it will even snow in town every once in a while (it only stays around a day or so).
PERFECT weather in the fall and winter. I absolutely thrive here in fall and winter.

Social scene: Admittedly, it can be lacking, but it depends on what you like to do. If you're into night time hot spots, dancing, clubbing...well, not much here. There are a few local bars, most of which are kind of down-home-y. There are some surprisingly good local bands that play in various bars. There are lots of little niche clubs and groups that get together and do things.

Music: Ridgecrest is FILLED with awesome musicians! There is an orchestra, chamber music, local bands, I think the college still has choir (not sure on that). There is an Open Mic night every other Friday at the USO club. It's a mixed bag...some people are so good you wonder where they've been hiding. Other people...campfire quality. Mostly guitarists/singers perform at Open Mic, sometimes other types of music such as piano etc. There are various little musical groups that perform here and there. A Big Band Express. The schools have music programs, and there are a few excellent violin and piano teachers in town. Even an opera group that performs occasionally. And the Indian Wells Valley Concert Association. Other groups that I'm not remembering, I'm sure. Lots of garage bands. Even a ukulele club!

Hiking and Biking and Running: The local Biking Club is called HSC (High Sierra Cyclists). The local running club is called OTHTC (Over the Hill Track Club). Both clubs host a variety of events every year, everything from short social rides to killer long rides for the bike club, and everything from 5Ks to an Ultra Marathon (50K) for the running club. Something to suit everyone. Plus there are lots of little unofficial splinter groups that get together for biking and hiking and running.

Employment: The major employer in town is NAWCWD (Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division). If you are a scientist or engineer, you've got it made in the shade. Others may have to work a little harder to find meaningful employment. The school system and the hospital are large employers. There are a lot of contractors who support the base as well.

Schools: Everything from pre-K to Community College. Schools are a hot topic and some people will have very opinionated opinions based on personal experience. My two cents is this: both my kids went through their entire schooling from kindergarten through getting their AA at our local community college, and I don't have a single complaint. My kids were never treated unfairly, never got into trouble, and I feel they got a good education. Can you find better elsewhere? Of course. There is always better and worse to be found. If your child is an average student, I would have no hesitation in saying they'll thrive here. I don't have children with special needs, and neither of my children were child Einsteins, so I have nothing to say about education for children outside the middle of the bell curve. We've been happy with what our kids have received here WRT education.

Commute to work: What commute? LOL. I live in one of the furthest neighborhoods from base, and it would take 10-15 minutes to get to work. Other people who live closer to town - 5 to 10 minutes.

There's an 8 screen movie theater, (needing a little TLC but still...we go there often), a Super Walmart, K-Mart, Home Depot, Marshall's, Joanne's, Big 5, 3 grocery stores (2 Albertson's and 1 Stater Bros). Lots of little mom and pop stores. For everything else, there's Amazon. I do not miss a shopping mall in any way, shape or form. I do wish there were a Trader Joe's and a Costco closer. Nearest TJ and Costco is the Lancaster area, about 1.5 hours away.

The mountains, beach, big city (LA area) are all within a couple-few hours away. There's a saying about Ridgecrest...it's out in the middle of nowhere, but close to everything. If you like the Sierras and all the glories it brings (backpacking, fishing, outdoor sports, skiing), well, the Sierras are close by. There's a small family-style ski/board resort called Shirley Meadows/Alta Sierra that's a couple hours away. Mammoth Mountain is 3-ish hours away. Mammoth is world class. Quite a few little breweries in the Sierras, even a local one (Indian Wells Valley Brewery). And Death Valley is just a couple hours away. I would not recommend visiting DV in the summer, although hordes of tourists seem to like it in summer, I think for bragging rights ("I survived DV in the summer..." to which I say, "go, you".) To each their own. Fall and winter are perfect there. If you want to hike Mt. Whitney, it's just a couple hours away. The portals are a great place to hang out in summer...nice and cool and shady, no hiking required.

Sometimes dealing with local mom and pop businesses can be frustrating. It's something I've gotten used to, and I try and support our local small businesses. Opening hours may be limited, they may not have a web site, inventory may be lacking, and sometimes they're just closed when they should be open. They struggle, and as mentioned, I do try and support them when I can.

Medical: For general medical needs, Ridgecrest has everything you'll need. We have a lot of specialists (heart, lung, vision, ortho etc.) who come here on a regular basis (some once a week, some every two weeks, it varies). For very unusual or complicated medical conditions, you might want to shop around. For normal medical needs, Ridgecrest medical providers have you covered.

Well, this is getting long, so I'm going to close. In short, I think a place is what you make of it. A lot of people can be happy living just about anywhere, and they create their own little blissful bubble. That's what I've done. Other people expect their entertainment and niceties to be handed to them on a silver platter...people such as that will find Ridgecrest lacking. If anyone says "there's nothing to do here" then they are not trying very hard, or they expect big city amenities in a small town, or they don't like outdoor activities. There is opportunity at every moment...whether one seizes that, or sits back and complains, is up to them. Generally speaking, I love it here.
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Old 05-10-2018, 04:33 PM
 
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What do all the soldiers or sailors I guess that work on the Base do for fun then? Do they all drive to Bakersfield?
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Old 05-11-2018, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Studio City, CA 91604
3,051 posts, read 3,605,799 times
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Lancaster/Palmdale usually... it's a straight/easy drive down the 14.

Some may go to Las Vegas for a couple days. Almost none go to Bakersfield.

That's what I've been told anyway.
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Old 05-11-2018, 02:37 PM
 
223 posts, read 178,367 times
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They go to Lancaster/Palmdale for fun?

The area’s getting nicer, but damn, that’s a little depressing.

Ridgecrest has an embarrassment of riches for those who love the outdoors, for big city entertainment, not so much.
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Old 05-12-2018, 12:04 AM
 
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There needs to be a direct freeway link from LV to Ridgecrest, onto the Central Valley or California.
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Old 05-13-2018, 09:51 PM
 
Location: Studio City, CA 91604
3,051 posts, read 3,605,799 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JB316 View Post
They go to Lancaster/Palmdale for fun?

The area’s getting nicer, but damn, that’s a little depressing.

Ridgecrest has an embarrassment of riches for those who love the outdoors, for big city entertainment, not so much.
Lancaster/Palmdale has the closest large shopping malls to Ridgecrest, it also has the water park in the summer, the performing arts centers, the big 22-screen movie theaters, the Costco and Sam's Club, the Trader Joe's, the organic grocery store (can't recall the name?), the farmers markets, the big fairgrounds, the concerts, the book stores, the festivals, the auto dealerships, etc.

The better medical facilities are in Lancaster/Palmdale too, if you need specialty care.

My aunt in Tehachapi goes to Lancaster/Palmdale for most anything she can't get there. Ridgecrest people do the same.

The other alternative would be to go the other direction to Victorville/Hesperia, but the road (395) isn't as good as the 14 and there's not the same venues that Lancaster/Palmdale offers. Victorville/Hesperia is also a lot more sparse and scattered.

All of those little desert towns (Ridgecrest, Boron, Mojave, Tehachapi, California City, etc) tend to gravitate more towards Lancaster/Palmdale which is good for their city revenue and LA County's revenue.

Last edited by kttam186290; 05-13-2018 at 10:01 PM..
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