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Old 11-11-2011, 12:29 PM
 
33 posts, read 230,808 times
Reputation: 24

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My husband and I are considering relocating to Alexandria, MN from Seattle, WA. We currently live in the thick of the city, and realize Alexandria will be a HUGE change from our current urban lifestyle! I'd be interested to hear other people's thoughts/opinions on Alexandria.

We are both in our late-twenties, no kids yet, but thinking of starting a family soon. We're very active and outdoorsy, and also appreciate the arts, shopping, fine dining, culture, etc.

We have family an hour away (St. Cloud) which would also be a huge perk.

My husband grew up in the midwest and I spent over five years there, so we understand the major differences between a place like Seattle and the state of Minnesota. I'm more interested to hear specific details about the community of Alexandria.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 11-11-2011, 01:41 PM
 
20,793 posts, read 56,041,664 times
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Alex is a great place, VERY busy for the size town. Lots of cute shops downtown, etc. It's an easy ride down to the Twin Cities to catch a play at the Guthrie or whatever too. Unless you go to the theater weekly now, it really isn't going to be that much different for you living in Alex then in Seattle that way. The schools are good there so when the kids do come along that will be a plus. They have a hospital and a nice medical clinic there as well.
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Old 11-11-2011, 02:14 PM
 
54 posts, read 101,347 times
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Like golfgal said, Alexandria is a great town. Very bustling for a town it's size(population right around 11,000.) There is lots to do, plenty of places to shop and eat and they have a very good sense of community in Alex. They also have good schools, health facilities and plenty of lakes in the area.

For fine dining and the arts, the Twin Cities are an easy 2 hour drive down I-94. Really a pretty painless drive most times. And your relatives in St. Cloud will only be 1 hour down the road.

If you are ok with moving from an urban to a small town life, you won't find many better small towns than Alexandria. I grew up a half hour north of Alex so I am quite familiar with the town. I've spent a lot of time there.
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Old 11-11-2011, 02:14 PM
 
Location: Minnesota
127 posts, read 298,420 times
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Alex is a great place to live if you like the outdoors and art. They have many little artsy type shops and an annual art fair that is really good for a small community. Plus they have a playhouse that gets some good plays as well (TLHD :: Home). In the summer it is very hectic around town. I believe that w/ all of the resorts and cabins around the area lakes the town almost doubles in population. The schools are quality, the tech school is rated 8th in the nation and the economy is doing well considering our overall national problems. With Minneapolis/St. Paul so close it is a perfect place to live (in my opinion). I lived there for 4 years and wish I could go back.
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Old 11-11-2011, 03:06 PM
 
33 posts, read 230,808 times
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Thanks for all of the info! Everyone we've talked to outside of this forum have also had nothing but wonderful things to say about Alex, and we are really starting to get excited about the possibility of living there.

What is the general "demographic" for the area? My only concern is that we may be one of the few young couples without any kids in town, and might have a hard time meeting friends who are at the same "place" as we are in regards to age, not having a family yet, etc.
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Old 11-11-2011, 03:45 PM
 
Location: Morris, MN
135 posts, read 564,753 times
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katnewyorker,

I moved my family to Morris (UMM- Go Cougars!!), 45 minutes southwest of Alec last year. Residents refer to Alexandria as Alec. While still considered prairie topography, Alec has some rolling hills, some trees, and lot of lakes. Many of the homes around the major lakes are second homes to wealthy from the twin cities and Fargo.

Are with 3M or Tastefully Simple? You will find lots of transplants to the area. I would expect little issue meeting people in the same situation as you with regards to job relocation. Alec is a tourist destination and stays alive in all seasons. Summer is a blast. Winter sports are huge! Recreation is a big part of the culture.

Alec is a shopping hub complete with a mall, discount stores, and a lively downtown district with antique stores, bookstores, and coffee shops. Alec is the closest shopping hub to Morris. We're there once a month.

Definitely a buyers' market right now. Lots of homes on the market of many prices ranges and locations. Make sure any home you look at is free of water issues or has water issues addressed. With the water table in Alec, expect to find sump baskets. I doubt you'll find a home without one. Make sure water is being dealt with correctly, and you'll be fine.

Relax and enjoy life. Living in Alec is pretty low stress. Take time to enjoy the simple things in life. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions.

Welcome to the neighborhood,
disneyrecords
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Old 11-11-2011, 04:01 PM
 
812 posts, read 1,951,633 times
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I'll ditto the others that it's a nice place but to me there's a big downside. It's a tourist town and it's crazy during fishing season, especially on weekends. If you can work around that you'll be in a town with a good economy unlike a lot of the smaller towns that have been dying out.
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Old 11-11-2011, 06:45 PM
 
20,793 posts, read 56,041,664 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by katnewyorker View Post
Thanks for all of the info! Everyone we've talked to outside of this forum have also had nothing but wonderful things to say about Alex, and we are really starting to get excited about the possibility of living there.

What is the general "demographic" for the area? My only concern is that we may be one of the few young couples without any kids in town, and might have a hard time meeting friends who are at the same "place" as we are in regards to age, not having a family yet, etc.
You will probably be one of the few young couples without children but I wouldn't let that bother you. Once you do have kids you will meet plenty of people. If you get active at church or in civic organizations you will meet plenty of people from all age groups.
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Old 11-11-2011, 08:30 PM
 
Location: Morris, MN
135 posts, read 564,753 times
Reputation: 120
If you truly enjoy the outdoors, visit Alec. Stay at Arrowwood and check out Carlos Creek Winery. Many of my friends from the twin cities would move to Alec in a heartbeat if they could find gainful employment. If you have an opportunity that would be a logical step in your career, check it out.
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Old 11-29-2011, 04:26 PM
 
33 posts, read 230,808 times
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Well, it's official! We're moving in January. Not the best time of the year to relocate, I realize, but we'll be flying out and having everything shipped. A bit nervous about the culture shock of moving from the big city to a smaller town, but am hoping for the best. All of your feedback has been very encouraging!
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