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Old 05-28-2013, 10:44 PM
 
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I'm a 21 year old art student from Florida trying to find a liberal, gay-friendly, and artsy city. I want to be somewhere with nature and a laid-back vibe, with young people, with things to do, and lots of public transit.

Seattle and Santa Cruz were my first choices but I'm from Florida and don't want to be so far from home. I've never been to NC or Colorado but have done some research and found that they're gay friendly? Really?
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Old 05-29-2013, 07:19 AM
 
Location: The Berk in Denver, CO USA
13,947 posts, read 20,190,335 times
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Default Pick up the phone

Gay and Lesbian Fund for Colorado | Committed to Colorado
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Old 05-29-2013, 08:00 AM
 
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Noone on here is going to be offended if you just say your gay. I've never met a straight person who was so gay friendly they were choosing a city by how gay friendly the city was.

That said, if you want "liberal, gay friendly and artsy", Colorado will not be at the top of the list. Denver won't be at the bottom, if can supply those things, but if you are comparing it to Seattle and Santa Cruz, you will find it scores lower in those areas. You may also find the public transit is less than you would expect in coastal cities. Colorado has a "live and let live" vibe. They will neither cheer for you, nor ridicule you. They'll just go on with their day because it is non of their business. I like that in a town, but some people want a hipster scene. You'll find that to be more in force in coastal cities, in my opinion.

I wouldn't consider Denver to be above average in "Artsy" for a city of this size, but liberal and gay friendly, yes I'd say it meets those qualifications. Just understand that our version is more ambivalent. People are more likely to tease you for getting an arts degree and trying to find a job waiting tables at applebees than about being gay.
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Old 05-29-2013, 08:32 AM
 
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I would go with your first choices of Seattle and Santa Cruz. They are a plane ride from Florida, just like CO. It is not like you will be driving to Florida from CO for the weekend. The stuff Seattle and Santa Cruz offer are not CO's strong points. I think CO is better for middle aged, settled gays as it is open minded, tolerant, mind your own business kind of place with plenty of activities for the more family oriented or settled set. For young people if they are really interested in hiking, biking, mountain climbing, skiing etc (you get the picture, outdoor sports) then CO is a great spot. You sound a bit more cosmopolitan and that scene is OK in the metro area but just barely. It really isn't a young 21 yr old's dream spot if they are looking for artsy young people.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:44 AM
 
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I gather Asheville is very tough for jobs and is self-consciously artsy. (I get this from a musician friend in her 40s, who was investigating it for a possible move. She settled on a commuter marriage with her commuting time into Berklee School in Boston).
I think any artsy-type town is going to have the jobs issue. OP didn't mention job situation, so...
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:56 PM
 
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Wink Asheville, Santa Cruz, Seattle & Colorado

The first thing that came to mind, as well as town, was Boulder.

It is certainly liberal, I imagine adequately 'gay-friendly,' and appreciates the arts. Not to mention a laid-back vibe of sorts, plenty of young people with a major university in town, as well as plenty of things to do. Whether it is the most artsy or gay-friendly place one could find is debatable, but likely within Colorado for a town of any size.

Asheville, NC I can't speak to. If believing it should more or less suite in these areas. Although, there, one may wish to spend more of their time in or near town where the ambience is more friendly. Possibly.

Whereas Boulder is renowned as a liberal bastion in a state which is largely otherwise various shades of blue, red and all the purple mixed between. But from Boulder and the greater Front Range with a lot of great nature in our collective backyard. Something that might be explored without hesitation, and wherever you go your business is basically your own.

Possibly consider the climate as well. As residing at an elevation of 2,134 feet, Asheville may allow some respite from the hot and humid summers of the East.

However, add 1,200 feet to that and you'll very roughly have the lowest spot in Colorado well out on the eastern plains along the Arkansas River. Denver isn't called the "Mile High City" for nothing, Boulder is about 300 feet higher, with all the Front Range at a similar elevation. Head into the mountains and one is only going up from there. Breckenridge, for instance, being one of the favored haunts of many from the Front Range seeking a day or more in the mountains with a relatively short drive, lies at 9,600 feet. There are mountains surrounding it appreciably higher.

Then take Santa Cruz, CA or Seattle, WA, both basically at sea level. Maritime climates. Of the two, Santa Cruz will be warmer, if influenced by the ocean, and distinctly less warm in summer than the Bay Area. My understanding is that Santa Cruz is a somewhat insular place. Seattle a lot larger and cosmopolitan. It also is justly renowned for its regular steady drizzle of rain throughout long winters, with little sun. It seldom snows there—if a LOT, higher in the nearby Cascade Mountains—but due humidity can feel colder at its customary 45 something than dry and often sunny Colorado at the same or lower temps. Something to consider, for aside of different takes on liberality, different lifestyles and weather as well in these various locals.

We might as well touch upon employment, too. That is often the deciding factor for many. If they even get as far as Colorado, usually only to the Front Range, as where most of the population and jobs are. Not exactly sure of this, but Asheville and Santa Cruz may have the more limited job markets. Denver and Seattle better in this respect, if one possibly better than another for a particular skill set. As this is related, the cost of living in Seattle, principally due housing, is higher than in Denver.

Colorado can be a great place. As you are casting out such a wide net, it may or not fit. A brief visit in person is always recommended. Or, like some, you can pin your hopes and dreams on not much more than a postcard and just show up. That approach doesn't always guarantee a smooth landing, if at times working in the past for some.
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Old 05-29-2013, 11:41 PM
 
Location: Parker, Colorado
48 posts, read 73,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbmeg View Post
I'm a 21 year old art student from Florida trying to find a liberal, gay-friendly, and artsy city. I want to be somewhere with nature and a laid-back vibe, with young people, with things to do, and lots of public transit.

Seattle and Santa Cruz were my first choices but I'm from Florida and don't want to be so far from home. I've never been to NC or Colorado but have done some research and found that they're gay friendly? Really?
I just moved here to Denver, and since I am not gay, I don't have a clue where in Colorado might be gay friendly. I just wanted to say that although I don't know anything about the job market in Asheville, my parents moved to Hendersonville, which is right outside of Asheville, back in 2003, and we've always loved to visit Asheville while we were visiting them. I'm not gay, so I can't say much about that, but I know that the town has gone out of its way to make it gay friendly. The area is beautiful!
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Old 05-30-2013, 02:40 AM
 
Location: Columbia, MD
1,423 posts, read 1,978,251 times
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I'd have to assume that Boulder might be a good fit for you. On a side note, and of course I mention this with a little personal bias , but did you ever consider Santa Fe. Large art scene, gay-friendy, and not that far from Colorado. There is also public transit, and a commuter train to and from Albuquerque. Delta Airlines even services the local airport offering service to and from Los Angeles, Dallas, and Chicago. Santa Fe, sits above 7,000 ft. in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains as well.
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Old 05-30-2013, 06:21 AM
 
68 posts, read 148,614 times
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Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
What the hell kind of reply was that? Guy just asked a question..........
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:06 AM
 
3,492 posts, read 4,932,778 times
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Interesting suggestion on Santa Fe. My concern with boulder, which would otherwise fit every qualification, is that it is very expensive to live there. If the OP has wealthy parents who pay for his/her living expenses, that won't be a problem. If they are not only an art student but also an artist that regularly sells their paintings for four figures, that won't be a problem. If, like most college grads without degrees in the hard sciences, they struggle to find meaningful employment, the housing costs in boulder could decimate their budget even with a room mate.
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