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Old 10-17-2013, 02:03 PM
 
8 posts, read 17,630 times
Reputation: 12

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Thanks in advance for any help. My husband and I are looking at relocating for his job Helena. We currently live in Utah (college town of about 50,000) near Salt Lake City. We have a 3 year old and a 1 year old. Just wondering where around Helena would be a good place to live? My husband would be working near the Holiday Inn on Park Ave. We are looking for good schools and a safe neighborhood within a 20 minute commute for him (I grew up in Wyoming and now what it's like to drive in the snow - don't want to be too far away). I am really concerned about the schools as I have heard they are overcrowded and none of them have great rankings on greatschools.org. What about private schools? Any other thoughts for us? We have lived in Utah/Wyoming our whole lives. My husband has other opportunities in Akron, OH and Herndon, VA that we are looking at as well.
On another note: I am a speech-language pathologist and work part-time/prn at a large urban hospital on their neuro rehabilitation floor. Are there any larger hospitals nearby?
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Old 10-17-2013, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Brew City
4,214 posts, read 2,501,359 times
Reputation: 5648
St Peters Hospital is in Helena. It's the largest hospital in the immediate area. Coincidently, the area around the hospital is a good place to live. Smith Elementary is not experiencing overcrowding.

If I had to do it all over again, I would have bought a house either in the South Hills (behind the hospital), the Upper West (from Park Ave west to the city limits and from Euclid south to Mount Helena) or in Montana City or Clancy. I think Montana City is where you should concentrate your search. It's the nicest area all around with good schools. The only hitch is it might be a PITA for your husband to get from I-15 to downtown. I hate that our downtown is in such an inaccessible area. You really can't get around East-West very well in Helena.

Here's a link to how real estate is sectioned in Helena

http://bigskybrokers.com/homefinder/Maps.htm

Whatever you do, don't buy in the North Valley, or anywhere in the valley for that matter. That's where all the overcrowding is.

I'm originally from Ohio. I don't have a ton of experience with Akron but I was never fond of it when I did visit. It's very rundown and gritty. It looks like a place that would have a lot of crime. Something we don't have to worry about much here in Helena. I would think the transition from Wyoming/Utah to Montana would be much easier than to Ohio. Ohio is busy. Akron isn't too far from Cleveland and there are people EVERYWHERE.
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Old 10-20-2013, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Montana
37 posts, read 76,638 times
Reputation: 40
I don't trust St. Peters as I stated elsewhere. They miss handled two urgent medical issues with my family. From interacting with locals in Helena, Butte and Great Falls, (lived here for 15 months now), they also know not to ever trust St. Peter's with something major. Women's health in Helena sucks big time as well. I wouldn't trust ONE clinic in Helena for women at all. I don't care for the schools and have met other moms that decided to leave the state with their family due to school problems and lack of resources. I am of the same conclusion at this point. I should mention I homeschool. Montana City is just a weird jut from Helena. I don't find anything special about it. The train tracks divide Montana City from Helena. Big cats and bears are spotted on a semi-regular basis, depending on the time of year. If you are Catholic, you would probably prefer the private schools otherwise I don't think there is much selection.
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Old 10-21-2013, 06:32 AM
 
Location: Brew City
4,214 posts, read 2,501,359 times
Reputation: 5648
I'd ignore this extremely negative post. ^^
A. The train tracks do not divide Montana City from Helena. The train tracks go right through the middle of Helena. Montana City is a very nice little town. The real estate holds it's value much better than Helena for a reason. I'm not sure what "a weird jut" is supposed to mean. The two areas have been growing together recently. Apparently this is a big no no?
B. She had a bad experience at St. Petes. Sorry to hear that. This is Montana. We don't have world class medical centers here. I'm not sure why she would expect that. Missoula's hospital has been known to screw things up a time or two as well. I've delivered two children at St. Petes and had great experiences both times. Friendly nurses and doctors that listen.
c. Again, this is Montana. Is she really complaining about bear and cat sightings?

Someone clearly has an axe to grind and in 15 months has obviously overstayed her welcome. I wish she finds luck somewhere that suits her needs better because Montana isn't it. You have to know what you're getting into when you move to a place like this. Limited resources are to be expected. We have less than a million people in the fourth largest state.
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Old 10-21-2013, 07:51 AM
 
Location: Where the mountains touch the sky
4,910 posts, read 5,796,001 times
Reputation: 8282
I would agree with Vegabern, you can't expect the resources of a place like Chicago in a state like Montana.

I have lived just outside Helena for over 20 years, and while it is far too liberal for my tastes, isn't a bad town in many respects. Fairly low crime rate, easy access to services, decent neighborhoods, lots of community activities.

Last Chance Gulch is probably the least accessable place in town due to limited parking and the streets can be a real e-ticket ride when it snows.

If you are looking for good neighborhoods with a close commute, just about anywhere around the Capitol would work, and the Capitol itself is only about a mile from the gulch, so commuting isn't a big deal.

Personally, I would find something outside city limits, the city taxes are terrible.

Don't know much about schools, don't have kids so can't help you there.

As to the hospital, my father received very good care there when he had a heart attack and had a couple stints put in.
The hospital staff is very skilled, the administration stinks. The former director was recently replaced as he received a "no confidence" vote from the doctors and the board of directors.
The hospital is in a state of flux right now, but there are several doctors offices and outpatient clinics that need skilled nurses.

Or you could go to Fort Harrison, the VA hospital. They have some excellent folks working there and from what I hear the care and atmosphere there have really become as good as anywhere.

I would reccomend a visit or 2 first if you can, spend some time looking around, talk to folks that live here, make up your own mind first before you commit to a move.

Good luck!
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Old 10-21-2013, 08:26 PM
 
8 posts, read 17,630 times
Reputation: 12
Thanks all. I grew up in a small Wyoming town, so I have an idea as to what living in Montana would be like. We wouldn't move until late winter/early spring so that would give us time to visit and find something that works. Just wanted to get a general feel for the area.
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Old 01-14-2014, 08:17 AM
 
Location: Montana
37 posts, read 76,638 times
Reputation: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vegabern View Post
I'd ignore this extremely negative post. ^^
A. The train tracks do not divide Montana City from Helena. The train tracks go right through the middle of Helena. Montana City is a very nice little town. The real estate holds it's value much better than Helena for a reason. I'm not sure what "a weird jut" is supposed to mean. The two areas have been growing together recently. Apparently this is a big no no?
B. She had a bad experience at St. Petes. Sorry to hear that. This is Montana. We don't have world class medical centers here. I'm not sure why she would expect that. Missoula's hospital has been known to screw things up a time or two as well. I've delivered two children at St. Petes and had great experiences both times. Friendly nurses and doctors that listen.
c. Again, this is Montana. Is she really complaining about bear and cat sightings?

Someone clearly has an axe to grind and in 15 months has obviously overstayed her welcome. I wish she finds luck somewhere that suits her needs better because Montana isn't it. You have to know what you're getting into when you move to a place like this. Limited resources are to be expected. We have less than a million people in the fourth largest state.
You can slam me for being negative all you want. I'm stating experiences I've had and other people have had here - people who have been born and raised here and have transplanted here.

There seems to be a lot of people with the opinion that Montana is some dream land. That when they come here, all will be like it is in the movies. And then they get here and get pissed off and then try and change everything.

Well I'm not wanting to change everything. Apparently if I state the truth, I'm ganged up on in these forums by a few that belong to the special 'club'. My opinions have to resonate a certain tone otherwise I suck apparently.

--- I'm not the only one who has voiced problems with St. Pete's. People regularly post their disgust on other sites and CL.

---- No, I'm (she), not complaining about bear and cat sightings. You have people that move into town and go crazy because they saw an animal. I'm saying they are here. Learn to live with them.

---- I don't have an axe to grind. I haven't overstayed my welcome. Don't wish me luck because I don't need it.

---- Montana City is the land of the rich, which you seem to be bloating from. It's a nice town if you have a big pocket book.
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Old 01-14-2014, 08:19 AM
 
Location: Montana
37 posts, read 76,638 times
Reputation: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by MTSilvertip View Post
I would agree with Vegabern, you can't expect the resources of a place like Chicago in a state like Montana.

I have lived just outside Helena for over 20 years, and while it is far too liberal for my tastes, isn't a bad town in many respects. Fairly low crime rate, easy access to services, decent neighborhoods, lots of community activities.

Last Chance Gulch is probably the least accessable place in town due to limited parking and the streets can be a real e-ticket ride when it snows.

If you are looking for good neighborhoods with a close commute, just about anywhere around the Capitol would work, and the Capitol itself is only about a mile from the gulch, so commuting isn't a big deal.

Personally, I would find something outside city limits, the city taxes are terrible.

Don't know much about schools, don't have kids so can't help you there.

As to the hospital, my father received very good care there when he had a heart attack and had a couple stints put in.
The hospital staff is very skilled, the administration stinks. The former director was recently replaced as he received a "no confidence" vote from the doctors and the board of directors.
The hospital is in a state of flux right now, but there are several doctors offices and outpatient clinics that need skilled nurses.

Or you could go to Fort Harrison, the VA hospital. They have some excellent folks working there and from what I hear the care and atmosphere there have really become as good as anywhere.

I would reccomend a visit or 2 first if you can, spend some time looking around, talk to folks that live here, make up your own mind first before you commit to a move.

Good luck!
I agree 100%, Helena is rather liberal. And city taxes are bad. Overall it's a good town.
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Old 01-22-2014, 06:23 PM
 
Location: Kalispell, MT
4 posts, read 9,146 times
Reputation: 14
Quick advice: Don't move to Helena.

Long advice: Don't move to Helena. The people can be rude, the job market is in the dumps, housing is expensive, and there's a homeless/poverty issue. It also smells a little. And, this is just my opinion, but it's kind of a large ghost town. I really don't enjoy going there during the night time. It's not even the people, it's just very eerie.

Okay, maybe I'm being a little harsh. If you're driving on Highway 12, coming from the west, it's creepy as hell. The urban areas are actually quite pretty, though the surrounding area of Helena can look rather sad and depressing. The area near the state capitol is really, really nice. I suppose Helena does have its good parts. I'm biased, though, because I've never driven around the good parts. My dad has a friend who lives in the poster child of a **** shack, so that area is the only place I've been exposed to.

If you're an inappropriate bastard like me, you'll enjoy taking your children to Nob Hill. ;D
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Old 01-27-2014, 07:38 PM
 
10 posts, read 25,953 times
Reputation: 19
Rude people, crowded schools, expensive housing.......yep that about covers it. My family is from Helena and we could not get out fast enough.
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