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Old 02-13-2010, 04:33 PM
 
4 posts, read 18,014 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi everyone! This is my first post, but I've been a long-time visitor of city-data. My fiance may have a job offer in Springfield, and we're considering moving to the area, but we're pretty sure we don't want to live in the city of Springfield. We're trying to find a nice, small to mid-size town within 30 miles or so of Springfield. I'm in education and will be looking for a teaching job in the area, so somewhere with good, safe schools would be preferable. We're in our late twenties and enjoy having fun and interesting things to do, but we don't particularly care about nightlife. We'd be thrilled to find someplace with a lot of seasonal festivals, outdoor recreational activities, restaurants and a farmer's market. We're also looking for a town with a nice downtown area and would prefer an older, historic home to a new development. We've looked a little at Jacksonville and Taylorville and would love any insider information you might have. We'd also like to know of any other towns in the area you think we should check out. Thanks for all your help!
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Old 02-13-2010, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Hawaii-Puna District
3,755 posts, read 5,771,127 times
Reputation: 2299
Chatham.
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Old 02-13-2010, 08:03 PM
 
Location: The Great White North
410 posts, read 503,727 times
Reputation: 476
Chatham is quiet and right next to Springfield for a lot of the things you mentioned (outdoor rec, seasonal activities, etc.), but I'm not sure about the downtown section or the old houses...I may be wrong but I think of it mostly as new development. I can't say too much about Jacksonville or Taylorville, but it's probably worth at least driving around and taking a look.

One town that sounds like it might fit the bill is Petersburg, about 20 minutes northwest of Springfield. It's fairly small and out in the country, but is a very neat city next to the New Salem State Park, which will have plenty of activities. I don't have any experience with the schools, but that's about the best suggestion I can offer.
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Old 02-13-2010, 08:11 PM
 
Location: Hawaii-Puna District
3,755 posts, read 5,771,127 times
Reputation: 2299
Old houses generally have higher heating and cooling bills.
Chatham has a good school system with plenty of money to ensure that it stays that way.
It is also quite close to the newer shopping areas in South Springfield.
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Old 02-14-2010, 12:07 AM
 
Location: Not where you ever lived
10,837 posts, read 14,916,758 times
Reputation: 5372
Illinois is in the heart of the Grain and Livevstock Belt. It is the #2 corn producer in the state - so regradless of where you live you will most likely be surrounded by farms and ranches and miles of flat land.

Outside of Chicago and .St. Louis ftere are 4 towns over 50,000 population where you can find malls, upscale shopping and entertainment. Each town is different. Springfield is a political town. Champaign is a large college town. Bloomington is business town. Unlike the others, Peoria is a river town that sprawls along the Illinois River; it is a mix of business, medical and techology.

Fresh veggetables may be found in farmers markets is a town such as Peoria. Nor is it unusual to find summer produce sold in rural llinois in a parking lot, or from a roadside stand in front of a farmer's house.

County real estate taxes are always cheaper as county does not support city schools. Currently Illinois Income tax is a flat 3% and groceries are 1% tax. Most county seats in Illinois have a library, courthouse, lawyer, and a hospital.

Petersburg is a nice small town that is the seat of Menard County. It is approximately 15 miles NW of Springfield on ILRoute 97. I know several residents that work in Springfield. The area is not as flat as Springifeld. It is among rolling hills and mature forested areas. It is a scenic area. The town was built pre-1850 and you will find older homes, the old courthouse and a square for shopping around it.

If you like to drive there are several large nationally known events within 75 miles in any direction. Whether or not you go to any event depends upon whether or not you want to fight traffic and parking. One of the few driving events that is unique is the Spoon River Drive fall folliage tour in Fulton County.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:29 PM
 
Location: Sugar Grove, IL
3,132 posts, read 7,508,393 times
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my in-laws are from the springfield area and the town of chatham is quite a good place to live near springfield. also, petersburg and taylorville come to mind.
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Old 02-15-2010, 12:53 AM
 
Location: West-Central IL
341 posts, read 355,032 times
Reputation: 427
I would check out Petersburg as well. I've been there many times and enjoy the hilly, old-style housing and atmosphere. The school system is consolidated with 4 other towns; the high school is in Petersburg.
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Old 02-15-2010, 02:17 AM
 
Location: Hawaii-Puna District
3,755 posts, read 5,771,127 times
Reputation: 2299
If your husband's new job is in south Springfield, don't move to Petersburg. If the job is downtown (all 2 blocks by 2 blocks) Petersburg wouldn't be a bad commute. Living closer to where you work gives you more "home time".
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Old 02-15-2010, 07:20 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
2,236 posts, read 2,077,311 times
Reputation: 1919
Sherman and Rochester are both very nice.
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Old 02-18-2010, 08:05 AM
 
4 posts, read 18,014 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks for all the suggestions, everyone. I think we're looking mostly at Petersburg and Taylorville now. Thanks again!
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