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Old 09-29-2011, 05:58 AM
 
Location: Middle America
35,817 posts, read 39,334,463 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOKAN View Post
A) Southern and rural cities and towns are more culturally homogeneous, there's more familiarity, less divide, a more unified culture, which could be what breeds friendliness.
Unfortunateley, this also has the propensity to breed UNfriendliness to anyone who is in anyway an interloper to the culture. I grew up in a rural area, and in our local small towns, there was definitely a clannish mentality...my dad's family has lived there for generations, and is part of the cultural landscape, easily. However, my mom is from a town that's only about 20 miles down a two-lane highway, and she's been considered an outsider the entire 40 years she and my dad have been married. After 40 years, she's still not considered "from there." And don't even get me started on the settled-out, formerly migrant agricultural worker latino population that's increasingly called the area home in recent decades. The "friendliness" of small towns can be very, very subjective. Just because people aren't strangers doesn't make them friendly.
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Old 09-29-2011, 06:41 AM
 
Location: Kansas City, MO
3,572 posts, read 6,195,578 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TabulaRasa View Post
Unfortunateley, this also has the propensity to breed UNfriendliness to anyone who is in anyway an interloper to the culture. I grew up in a rural area, and in our local small towns, there was definitely a clannish mentality...my dad's family has lived there for generations, and is part of the cultural landscape, easily. However, my mom is from a town that's only about 20 miles down a two-lane highway, and she's been considered an outsider the entire 40 years she and my dad have been married. After 40 years, she's still not considered "from there." And don't even get me started on the settled-out, formerly migrant agricultural worker latino population that's increasingly called the area home in recent decades. The "friendliness" of small towns can be very, very subjective. Just because people aren't strangers doesn't make them friendly.
My experience has been that of it's as if the folks in places I've found friendly don't know a stranger. Although I'm sure it's subjective and the clannish thing you speak of sounds intimidating. Even today, with my past experiences, I do think it could be difficult to move to a small town without having gone to school there.
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Old 09-30-2011, 09:22 PM
 
376 posts, read 429,412 times
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Bluecollar, I live in Seattle (Bainbridge Island) and I and my family are planning to relocate to KCMO as soon as we can sell our house. My wife is a native, her family lives in Brookside and her father's getting up there, so we plan to buy a house in that part of the city, which is safe and gorgeous. After living in the Pacific Northwest and experiencing the "Seattle Freeze," I suspect you'll find KC to be the way I found it when I started visiting after getting married: incredibly friendly, giving and warm. People who have lived in KC all their lives probably can't appreciate it like we in the PNW can, but the difference really is remarkable.
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Old 09-30-2011, 10:55 PM
 
Location: IN
20,168 posts, read 34,473,831 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post
Bluecollar, I live in Seattle (Bainbridge Island) and I and my family are planning to relocate to KCMO as soon as we can sell our house. My wife is a native, her family lives in Brookside and her father's getting up there, so we plan to buy a house in that part of the city, which is safe and gorgeous. After living in the Pacific Northwest and experiencing the "Seattle Freeze," I suspect you'll find KC to be the way I found it when I started visiting after getting married: incredibly friendly, giving and warm. People who have lived in KC all their lives probably can't appreciate it like we in the PNW can, but the difference really is remarkable.
Once again, it may be a difference in the "social culture" of differing places. Seattle has next to nothing in common with KC and that is just fine. Two separate worlds... KC never stood out as being overly frinedly at all to me. Then again, such difference might exist even at a city or neighborhood level. The neighborhood I grew up in (JOCO) was neither friendly nor diverse. I am sure this is gradually changing, but JOCO in particular will take a long time to gentrify in some of the middle ring suburbia areas.
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Old 10-01-2011, 01:51 AM
 
Location: Kansas City
50 posts, read 67,599 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post
Bluecollar, I live in Seattle (Bainbridge Island) and I and my family are planning to relocate to KCMO as soon as we can sell our house. My wife is a native, her family lives in Brookside and her father's getting up there, so we plan to buy a house in that part of the city, which is safe and gorgeous. After living in the Pacific Northwest and experiencing the "Seattle Freeze," I suspect you'll find KC to be the way I found it when I started visiting after getting married: incredibly friendly, giving and warm. People who have lived in KC all their lives probably can't appreciate it like we in the PNW can, but the difference really is remarkable.
Thanks. Yes I experienced the Seattle Freeze on numerous occasions. To know that it's wayyyyy friendlier than Seattle is very reassuring. In fact just recently a work buddy told me he couldn't respond to my emails because his email server crashed. I'm used to the freeze now to the point where I anticipate it and I never expected him to respond to my emails, it just isn't done in Seattle, but I wish they'd spare me those crappy excuses.

Anyway....

I realize KC is not part of the south and I do not consider it southern, the main reason behind my question was because of KC's location at a junction, kind of below the main midwestern cities and above the cities associated with the south, so I thought that maybe it was a hybrid of the two. Just because you drive over a border on a map does not mean the people suddenly change too. I guess the real question is at what point does the southern hospitality mindset completely "wash out", maybe it is below KC, but I was hoping it was closer to the Iowa border.

As near as I can tell, I would love Kansas City, I miss the reservedness of the midwest to a certain extent, so I don't mean it as a negative. On the livability scale it ranks very high in my book, but the winter's sound too much like Chicago without the convenience of trains and other forms of public transport, making it a little too car-centric for me. An entirely different topic though, I don't want to hijack my own thread.
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Old 10-01-2011, 10:26 AM
 
376 posts, read 429,412 times
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I've had to consider the same issues you're considering in the Seattle to KC move. I'm a freelance writer and musician, so culture is important. Here's what I've found:

Winters: Colder than Seattle, but not as perpetually gray. Nowhere near as bad as Chicago. Heck, I believe there was an 80-degree day out of nowhere last February, right KC dwellers?

Transit: This will suck. KC's car dependent for now. I will very much miss being able to take the ferry over to downtown Seattle and walk to Safeco Field to watch the Mariners get the tar beaten out of them, or take the Link to SeaTac or south Seattle for Ethiopian food. Upside: KC traffic is nowhere near as bad as Seattle traffic, which sucks even to me, a Los Angeles native.

Southern-ness: I haven't found KCMO to be southern in feel at all. There are a lot of churches (which all seem to be gorgeous limestone buildings, BTW; why does nobody write about how many beautiful churches Kansas City has?), but it has never seemed overly religious to me. It's more conservative than Seattle, of course, but not overly so as far as I can tell.

Culture: This is where KC rocks. I've connected with writers and musicians in the city already and the cultural scene is excellent. It's a big design center, too, with lots of co-working spaces and design studios.

Plus there's the much lower cost of living. You'll spend more on energy with the need for AC in the summer, but the housing costs are stupidly low compared to the Seattle area. As for not returning email, I hear you. My wife and I are very friendly and it's shocking to see how many people in the PNW react to our invites to join us at our home for dinner with discomfort. People keep you at arm's length in the Northwest, and that's something I've never found in KC. It will be an adjustment for a lifelong West Coaster like me, and for you, but life's about change. Good luck!
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Old 10-01-2011, 12:28 PM
 
Location: IN
20,168 posts, read 34,473,831 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post

Winters: Colder than Seattle, but not as perpetually gray. Nowhere near as bad as Chicago. Heck, I believe there was an 80-degree day out of nowhere last February, right KC dwellers?
KC winters, in general, are not like the Midwest core on eastward (basically anywhere in Iowa and points off further to the north and east. KC has a climate typical of the south-central Plains pertaining to the winter season. This means expect VERY DRY AIR (buy lots of chapstick and hand lotion) without very much snowfall- unless you consider 15-20 inches burdensome. Wind- expect a good amount of wind during the winter as well which makes things feel colder. Temperatures tend to be mainly in the 30s and 40s which is mild.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post
Transit: This will suck. KC's car dependent for now. I will very much miss being able to take the ferry over to downtown Seattle and walk to Safeco Field to watch the Mariners get the tar beaten out of them, or take the Link to SeaTac or south Seattle for Ethiopian food. Upside: KC traffic is nowhere near as bad as Seattle traffic, which sucks even to me, a Los Angeles native.
Transit in KC is abysmal and is due to the fact that KC has more highway miles of pavement than any other city in the country. The car culture is extremely pervasive compared to the Midwest. To avoid driving long distances everywhere I would live in KC, MO. I don't think a low density suburb would be a good fit. The new performing arts center already under construction will be an added asset for the city.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post
Southern-ness: I haven't found KCMO to be southern in feel at all. There are a lot of churches (which all seem to be gorgeous limestone buildings, BTW; why does nobody write about how many beautiful churches Kansas City has?), but it has never seemed overly religious to me. It's more conservative than Seattle, of course, but not overly so as far as I can tell.
That is fairly true, only when comparing KC to other cities in the lower Midwest. It has little in common with the social culture of the upper Midwest. Also, if you go a few counties outside of KC the culture definitely has much more of a pronounced southern influence which you won't find in the upper Midwest at all. KC is at the edge of the Bible Belt so don't underestimate the underlying social conservatism of the region. KC also lacks the level of entreprenurism and innovative creative energy of Seattle, but does have a number of startups in IT and tech.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post
Culture: This is where KC rocks. I've connected with writers and musicians in the city already and the cultural scene is excellent. It's a big design center, too, with lots of co-working spaces and design studios.
Agreed. KC has a high amount of cultural offerings for a metro of its size given the cost of living. Lots of things to do if one looks around a bit and networks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacificwhim View Post
Plus there's the much lower cost of living. You'll spend more on energy with the need for AC in the summer, but the housing costs are stupidly low compared to the Seattle area. As for not returning email, I hear you. My wife and I are very friendly and it's shocking to see how many people in the PNW react to our invites to join us at our home for dinner with discomfort. People keep you at arm's length in the Northwest, and that's something I've never found in KC. It will be an adjustment for a lifelong West Coaster like me, and for you, but life's about change. Good luck!
The lower cost of living is a double edge sword. I am a native of the KC region and have seen lots of apathy and complacency of the locals who don't particularly like to get out of their routines or try anything outside their comfort zone. Housing is low due to supply and demand as well as geographical factors. Very few factors act as an inhibitor for sprawl in KC so prices never increase much at all with all the supply on the market. All places have pros and cons.
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Old 10-01-2011, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Cleveland
2,192 posts, read 3,332,937 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluecollar View Post
Or a nice balance of the two?

What are the people like is what I'm asking? I grew up in neighboring Illinois just south of the Chicago area and that was always too reserved for me. Do people go out of their way to help out neighbors, friends, and fellow churchgoers? I've read accounts in the Dallas, Texas forums about the expressways, when several cars will pull over if they see somebody in need of help. In Chicago they'd fly on by and here in Seattle their too absorbed with the latest techy gadget to even look up and notice, what would they do in KC?
I don't buy that for a second.
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Old 10-01-2011, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Middle America
35,817 posts, read 39,334,463 times
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I lived in Chicago prior to KC, and the winters are nothing alike. In the four winters I've had in KC, last winter was the closest I've come to actually needing a real winter coat. Didn't get one, though, just made do with a lightweight pea coat. Usually, I can get to January without needing anything heavier than a heavyweight hoodie and thin stretch gloves when out and about running errands. This was not doable when I lived in Chicago.
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Old 10-01-2011, 02:26 PM
 
Location: Kansas City
50 posts, read 67,599 times
Reputation: 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribecavsbrowns View Post
I don't buy that for a second.
Well here's the link, you can take it up with them, I was only quoting what I read.

A Californian Transplant's "First" Impressions of TX
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