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Old 11-08-2010, 12:46 AM
 
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I'm new here Looking for a great place to live in the UK (probably not much of a chance finding this kind of thing there), US or Canada, with pretty weird requirements. Hoping someone here lives in my family's version of paradise and will vouch for it!

My husband, children and I got together and came up with the following:
- No more than 2hrs away from a major city (500,000+).
- Availability of land (20 acres or more), prices not too important
- Decent ability to grow things there, ie not desert
- In or close to a town with conveniences, ie grocery stores, cultural things
- Close to a major body of water (one of the great lakes or the ocean)
- Experiences all four seasons distinctly
- Considerable rain and snow, my whole family prefers cold weather and would love to live somewhere with a lot of rain (800-900mm and up) and at least some snow
- Not hick country. Preferably somewhere liberal to middle of the road.

I know these are pretty weird, but thanks in advance for any input!
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Old 11-08-2010, 12:59 AM
 
Location: Chicago
38,690 posts, read 89,356,696 times
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Consider the outskirts of Madison Wisconsin. Madison is roughly 225,000 plus another couple hundred thousand in the metro area, there's a very large university there (40K+ students) that contributes to the cultural vibrancy, it's an hour from Milwaukee (population 600,000, metro area population 2 million) which sits on Lake Michigan, just over 2 hours from Chicago (population 2.9 million, metro area population 9.5 million) which also sits on Lake Michigan, has very good soil (sits in the Corn Belt), generally liberal (though the surrounding area isn't), four very distinct seasons, and just the amount of rainfall you're looking for.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:04 AM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland/ Piedmont, CA
32,405 posts, read 55,299,418 times
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Well, based on your criteria, I would recommend somewhere along Interstate 5 between Eugene, Oregon and the US/Canadian border.

Rain, four seasons, progressive politics, decent for planting, not too far from the ocean oh and beautiful mountainous and forested terrain.

Well that's my 2 cents. Good Luck!
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:05 AM
 
Location: Rome, Georgia
2,706 posts, read 3,345,297 times
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I was also going to say Madison. Hits on all of your points.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:05 AM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
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The twenty acres thing will be fairly hard, believe it or not.

I would suggest you look in rural areas around Seattle, WA like in parts of King, Snohomish or Pierce Counties. The one caveat here is that the area doesn't get much snow.

Another idea is the Spokane, WA area, including the Idaho Panhandle (Coeur d'Alene, Sandpoint). Spokane anchors a two-county area of about 600,000 people, 20 acres shouldn't be too hard within two hours (this opens up many beautiful areas), and winters are snowy, falls and springs are semi-rainy, and summers are sunny. Coeur d'Alene Lake and Lake Pend Orielle are some of the most beautiful lakes in the west. The area as a whole leans conservative, but I'm fairly liberal and felt quite comfortable there (and I'm hoping to return ).
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Old 11-08-2010, 05:05 AM
 
Location: Boston, MA & Istanbul, Turkey
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I agree with the posters who said Oregon, Washington State and outside Madison, all three are great choices.

Also you should consider New England. Especially outside of either Boston, MA or Portland, ME. The growing season is alot longer in Massachusetts, so that would be the first choice of the two.

- 2hrs to a Major city: Boston (4.4m)
- Availability of land: Once you get 2hrs outside of Boston the towns become considerably less populated and available land should not be a major issue.
- The growing season April-November (I am still seeing local produce at the grocery store) should last long enough to suit your needs.
- In a town with conveniences: One of the nice features about New England is that alot of the towns maintain their own historic identity and most have their own Downtown or Central Square area where you can find many amenities that you would find in a larger sized city.
- Major body of water: Atlantic Ocean
- 4 Seasons: No issue there, all 4 are distinctly experienced on a yearly basis.
- Rain and Snow: Not a ton of rain, but a decent amount (not rainy like the PNW for example) but considerable snow.
- Liberal: Yes, Massachusetts is arguably the most liberal state in the nation. Democratic politics, gay marriage, universal healthcare, very very blue.
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Old 11-08-2010, 05:21 AM
 
Location: Beautiful Rhode Island
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Look at western Rhode Island, especially Exeter, Foster, Glocester. Meets all your criteria- not expensively either- under 400K for 20 + acres and a house. Less than 45 min from Providence which has many cultural amenities & is very liberal.
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Old 11-08-2010, 07:50 AM
 
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Rhode Island or Connecticut. Delaware and Maryland may also work
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Old 11-08-2010, 07:58 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Western Mass would work. 4 seasons, rather liberal. Plenty of rural areas but some nice towns with things going on. Boston is about a 2hr drive away.
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Old 11-08-2010, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Scotland
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What about Burlington, VT? It hits all your criteria plus its just about 2 hrs from Montreal.
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