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Old 02-27-2010, 06:57 PM
 
204 posts, read 327,833 times
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looking for a great small town, with a town square,parades, a farmers market..your typical perfect small town..but with a larger area within a shortish drive for shopping. With some type of water in the area..lots of outdoor activities,parks etc. We have three small children and currently live in MD. Ready to leave the east coast, too $$$. Any suggestions? we have been told that Colorado Springs is a nice area. I know this is out there just can't seem to find it for ourselves.. I am a stay at home mom, and my husband is in construction...thank you..
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Old 02-27-2010, 07:08 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,159,132 times
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Do a search of the Colorado forum and you will find a lot of answers to your questions. But, if you are looking for a small town that feels like a small town in the East, you are not going to find it in Colorado, or anywhere else in the Rocky Mountain West. In the metro areas, most of the growth has occurred in the last 50 years, and has followed the sprawling, auto-dependent suburban model that has become the antithesis of the walkable small town. In the rural areas, the small towns are more of the rough-hewn Western model to begin with, and have also succumbed to suburban-like automobile dependency and rural sprawl if they have grown.

There are farmer's markets in rural Colorado, but outside of Colorado's Eastern Plains, agriculture--especially cultivated agriculture--is in near-full retreat--the victim of land development, metropolitan water grabs (cultivated agriculture outside of the dryland grain areas in Eastern Colorado and a few small areas of small grain production in southwestern and northwestern Colorado is almost wholly dependent on artificial irrigation), and the general marginal nature of the climate in many areas of Colorado for agriculture.

And, there are a lot of places, starting less than 100 miles west from the East Coast cities, that have lower real estate costs than many, if not most areas of Colorado.

Oh, and construction is basically dead in Colorado right now . . .
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Old 02-27-2010, 07:13 PM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,319,527 times
Reputation: 6816
You should be making your decision on where your husband will be able to find work and that's probably not in Colorado nor in construction. He should be seeking another line of work and quick. Sounds like you're in a tough situation.
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Old 02-27-2010, 08:35 PM
 
9,817 posts, read 19,062,182 times
Reputation: 7541
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbug3 View Post
looking for a great small town, with a town square,parades, a farmers market..your typical perfect small town..but with a larger area within a shortish drive for shopping. With some type of water in the area..lots of outdoor activities,parks etc. We have three small children and currently live in MD. Ready to leave the east coast, too $$$. Any suggestions? we have been told that Colorado Springs is a nice area. I know this is out there just can't seem to find it for ourselves.. I am a stay at home mom, and my husband is in construction...thank you..
If you are looking for a "perfect" small town you have a better chance of finding that back east, as I did.

Colorado Springs I think has at least 500000 people in their metro area, probably more and I wouldn't think of that as small town.

Colorado is either urban or very rural without much transition in between. Most of the population lives on the mostly flat Front Range in front of the Rockies in urban/suburban type neighborhoods all in one long 100 mile blob along I-25. On the prairie you have some small farming towns. In the mountains, you either have very expensive ski towns or run down/rough towns oriented around mineral extraction.

In terms of water it doesn't exist like it does back east and technically most of Colorado is desert.

In terms of construction, Colorado had quite the real estate development boom, but that has ended. All my relatives in that line of work have been out of income, some for over 18 months and no sign at all of any improvement with many projects now being delayed to some random date in the future like 2020 or 2030, if they ever happen at all.

Mostly I think if you are looking to experience living out west and want that adventure than I say go for it. If you are looking to live in a nice small dream town with tons of economic opportunity and something that will change your personal situation, then I think you will be in for disappointment.

Also it sounds like you've never been to Colorado, so I wouldn't even bother doing more research until you actually visit. A lot of easterners have a hard time adjusting to the rapid weather changes, the constant wind, dry air and high elevation. All the geography, culture and history are very different as well.
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Old 02-27-2010, 09:42 PM
Status: "Planning for the future." (set 6 days ago)
 
Location: Just south of Denver since 1989
10,689 posts, read 28,565,620 times
Reputation: 6860
Water? Minnesota. Michigan. Salt Lake City.
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Old 02-28-2010, 12:18 AM
Status: "Not politically correct" (set 14 days ago)
 
Location: Western Colorado
10,598 posts, read 11,694,350 times
Reputation: 24322
kbug3, although I haven't lived in Colorado since the dawn of time, being a newcomer may I suggest you and your family visit all areas of the state during the summer AND winter. Talk to the local folks in the LOCAL cafes and shops not the tourist traps none of the locals go to, and pick up some of the town newspapers and read them (most are available online). Good luck to you.
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Old 02-28-2010, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,319,527 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jim9251 View Post
kbug3, although I haven't lived in Colorado since the dawn of time, being a newcomer may I suggest you and your family visit all areas of the state during the summer AND winter. Talk to the local folks in the LOCAL cafes and shops not the tourist traps none of the locals go to, and pick up some of the town newspapers and read them (most are available online). Good luck to you.
That's putting the cart before the horse. Husband should be spending his time on where he can earn an income before getting into all those niceties. He's going to be lucky to find a construction job anywhere in this country right now. Wonder if there's a way for folks with those skills to emigrate to places like China where they're building like crazy and have skilled labor shortages.
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Old 02-28-2010, 11:30 AM
 
204 posts, read 327,833 times
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thank you all for your help..i think we are going to take all the advice and look South...we like TN also and have some friends there...jobs are hard to find, and it is a scarrey time for us...thx again!
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Old 02-28-2010, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,319,527 times
Reputation: 6816
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbug3 View Post
thank you all for your help..i think we are going to take all the advice and look South...we like TN also and have some friends there...jobs are hard to find, and it is a scarrey time for us...thx again!
Or a bit closer to home you might want to look in parts of Virginia. There are affordable areas not far from where there's still some construction activity going on. The good news is that a lot of the illegals are leaving the area due to the economy.
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Old 02-28-2010, 12:39 PM
 
20,358 posts, read 37,893,411 times
Reputation: 18163
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbug3 View Post
looking for a great small town, with a town square,parades, a farmers market..your typical perfect small town..but with a larger area within a shortish drive for shopping. With some type of water in the area..lots of outdoor activities,parks etc. We have three small children and currently live in MD. Ready to leave the east coast, too $$$. Any suggestions? we have been told that Colorado Springs is a nice area. I know this is out there just can't seem to find it for ourselves.. I am a stay at home mom, and my husband is in construction...thank you..
You can find that in many parts of the nation. I'm from Baltimore and my favorite spots back east to recommend would be places like the Shenandoah Valley of VA along the I-81 corridor, as well as western Maryland towns like Oakland.
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