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Old 11-29-2014, 05:10 PM
 
Location: Ohio
2 posts, read 2,733 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello. My husband and I are thinking of moving to Dickenson due to a job. We would LOVE any in put about the area, town, etc. We have no children. How friendly is the city to transplants? Is it clean and safe? Is there shopping and things for a couple to do or do we have to drive out of Dickenson? How much are rentals? Thank you very much!
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Old 11-30-2014, 12:07 AM
 
25 posts, read 42,046 times
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Dickinson is amazing in every aspect when looking for a peaceful, friendly, small town atmosphere...the fog that lies within the valleys of the badlands (30 miles west) early mornings is to die for....shopping is another story, not much around but a small shopping center (Prairie Hills Mall) but what do you expect for a small town. There were plans to build a new shopping center but not sure if that's still a go (Google 'Baron Vistas' for info) I think there was a thread about it floating around here somewhere...

Do not be scared to make the move, people are friendly, you will be just fine!

Good luck.

(Please be sure to post back, if you do indeed make the move, for a follow up for others that are having similar worries and may have question for you)
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Old 12-19-2014, 05:06 PM
 
Location: Ohio
2 posts, read 2,733 times
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Thank you for responding! My husband is planning a end of Feb. Trip to check out the area. If shopping is limited, where is the next closest town? What about a gym?
Thanks��
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Old 12-19-2014, 07:47 PM
 
741 posts, read 1,499,424 times
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Check out the West River Community Center for fitness. It a Park Board type facility (I think).

All essentials are in Dickinson. Have to travel an hour east to Bismarck to get better variety and higher end stores.

Rentals probably run $1500-2000 / m, but that should be dropping. Buying is much more affordable if you have down payment.

Dickinson had very very low rentals before the oil boom. The entire town will seem like a suburb to you. There are few "old" buildings in Dickinson.
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Old 03-28-2015, 06:24 AM
 
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There is also an "Anytime Fitness" franchise for gym membership. If given the choice, get West River Community Center as for a similar price you get 3 pools (indoor rec, indoor lap, and outdoor pool (summer)), basketball courts, volleyball courts, some different leagues, etc. in addition to the usual array of weights and fitness equipment. Everything is open to the public for a "drop in fee" as well.

As for shopping think suburbs: Chain stores, Chain restaurants (though there are a couple decent local establishments too), chain hotels. Bismarck is a little better (more local stuff) and that is about 1-1.5 hours (about 100 miles). Even better is Fargo (close to 300 miles of open interstate).

What surprises most people I have met moving here from out of state is the open area. This is rural. 10 years ago 10-15000 people constituted a "big city."

People are very friendly though may come across as very reserved and private at first. Give them a chance and get to know them and they will be some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. Many of the long time residents are "locals" and have had the same social circles all their lives ("born-and-raised here" types) but there are lots of new people moving to town so it is not as insular as it was 10 years ago.

If looking for cheap living arrangments consider moving to "surrounding communities." Traffic on the interstate is negligible (though highway 22 can get harrowing). At most there are 4-5 days/year where living out of town will be a hassle to get to work (weather) there are many years where it isn't an issue at all. It is too cold for "icy roads" most of the time. If you don't have a garage get a block heater for your car and you should be fine. Surrounding towns like South Heart (10 miles W), Belfield (20 miles W), Gladstone (10M E), Taylor (15M E), Richardton (25M E), Hebron (30M E) offer much lower house prices and much lower tax rates. You will rack up a lot of miles on your car but usually the savings more than offset the increased "travel" costs. These are largely bedroom communities for Dickinson recently and most families have at least 1 person working in Dickinson.

For activities there is world class hiking in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park and Badlands (30-40M W) and the Medora Musical is worth checking out (kind of a cheesy wild west variety show but they are fun and usually have outstanding guest performers). There are also "leagues" of all kinds (bowling, darts, pool, etc.), a small movie theater (3 screens--usually have up to date movies). The usual assortment of bars. There are also some limited "cultural" events. The local university (Dickinson State University) does some concerts, plays/musicals, and there is also a thriving "international student" community that occasionally hosts events focusing on international issues. There are also some author visits, visiting bands/choirs occasionally have a concert. There is a very good dinosaur museum as some of the best dinosaur fields are about 50-100 miles SW.

Weather: It isn't as bad as some people say. Most parts of the country have weather they "don't go out in if they don't have to." ND is the same. Get a warm coat and warm hat, warm mittens/gloves, and at least 1 pair of boots, maybe some "snow pants" and you will be fine. What usually surprises people from around the country about the weather isn't how cold it gets--usually not as cold as you fear--but how long it stays cold. It can be "winter" here from October (get Halloween costumes for kids that fit over a parka! You never know) until at least into March, sometimes well into April. Dress for the weather, not what the calendar tells you. At the same time we can have very mild weather in the heart of winter. It can get to be in the 60's in January routinely ("January Thaw"). The first week of March we had lows well below 0, then a week and a half later we had it pushing 70 degrees. Dickinson is the "banana belt" of ND. It is routinely 20-30 degrees warmer here than Fargo/Grand Forks in Winter. Summers are cool and dry It usually tops out in the upper-90's and doesn't usually stay there more than a week before it goes down to highs in the Upper 80's. We can hit 100's but rarely more than 2-3 days (usually just 1--and it is the headline in the local paper!). It is usually very dry here (we border on "desert" designation) and it is one of the sunniest places in the nation.

I hope I haven't bored you with irrelevant information. I hope you come out here and enjoy it. The biggest thing is take it for what it is rather than what you wish it could be, at least for a while. I have seen many people try to "fix it" in their first 6 months and it inevitably leads to frustration and alienates the people that can help you most.
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Old Today, 03:46 PM
 
1 posts
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Old post, but here we go.

There are A TON of cliques here. "Old dinero" kinda thing. Although, I was told of one well-known family, "Dont bother chatting with them-they're not that friendly". Pfffft. They're nice enough to me. HARD working ranch people. Their youngest always giggles when I call him cowboy, lol...

If you're hard-working and don't complain, that will get you a loooong ways. I have earned the title "tough", from several people. Because I don't complain. I just go on and get it done.

Be prepared for plain speaking. If you really don't want to know, don't ask. And most won't be offended if YOU'RE plain spoken. Not rude. There's a difference.

There's an invisible wall between town people, and farm/ranch people. Some will deny the existence, but it's there. I get along with most.

And like someone said, don't try to make Dickinson into what you came from.
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