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Old 06-21-2007, 06:43 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
29,617 posts, read 65,657,734 times
Reputation: 15060

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Good evening, everyone!

I'm typing this as an open invitation for anyone with inquiries about the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area to please let me know here in a reply so I can get back to you as expediently as I possibly can. I've been getting overwhelmed lately by the volume of PMs I've been receiving, and I saw how popular MollyMe's thread has been with her stomping grounds in the Poconos, so I figured creating a similar thread would be a good move on my part.

I may only be 20, but don't let my age fool you. I've taken a keen liking to the Tri-County Area (Lackawanna/Luzerne/Wyoming), and I know these three areas like the back of my hand. As a future homeowner, business owner, and politician in the area, I have a vested interest in doing anything in my power to helping it to thrive. I'd be more than happy to address any and all concerns you might have about this wonderful region that is just starting to rebound after years of decline and neglect.

Hope to hear from you puzzled "lurkers" soon!
-Paul
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Old 06-21-2007, 09:46 PM
 
126 posts, read 564,222 times
Reputation: 51
What's the nightlife/shopping like in Scranton, and how far away is it from a good hike? Are there many indy bookstores and coffee shops? And does it snow a lot in the winter and rain a lot in the other seasons?

My husband just found out that the outlook for his job in that area is great so it's near the small crowd at the top of our list.
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Old 06-21-2007, 09:47 PM
 
126 posts, read 564,222 times
Reputation: 51
Oh, and are young families abundant?

Thanks!!
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Old 06-22-2007, 06:43 AM
 
Location: Bucks County PA
82 posts, read 282,754 times
Reputation: 26
Hi Paul.

I've sent you a PM and haven't heard back from you- so should I take that
to mean that you really want to limit the inquiry to the counties mentioned above?

Thanks.
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Old 06-22-2007, 01:04 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
29,617 posts, read 65,657,734 times
Reputation: 15060
Quote:
Originally Posted by ladyfish View Post
What's the nightlife/shopping like in Scranton, and how far away is it from a good hike? Are there many indy bookstores and coffee shops? And does it snow a lot in the winter and rain a lot in the other seasons?

My husband just found out that the outlook for his job in that area is great so it's near the small crowd at the top of our list.

The nightlife scene in Scranton has been "sub-par" for quite some time; many locals think hitting up a corner bar on a Thursday night is "living it up." LOL! Nevertheless, we've been making some great strides in the right direction over the past few years, and the old complaint of "there's nothing to do" is starting to be phased out in the region. Since Scranton is only 20-25 minutes from Wilkes-Barre, many residents from there hit up events in Wilkes-Barre, and vice-versa. As such, I'll include the Wilkes-Barre area with some of my suggestions.

Nightclubs
Woodlands Inn & Resort, Wilkes-Barre: Home to "Club Evolution" on Thursday nights that is quite popular amongst the 18-24 college crowd. It also attracts an older crowd of thirty-and-forty-somethings on different evenings.

Twist, Wilkes-Barre: A gay/lesbian-oriented night club.

Club Mardi Gras, Downtown Wilkes-Barre: A popular new college-crowd dance and party hangout only blocks from both Wilkes University and King's College.

Tink's Entertainment Complex, Downtown Scranton: Popular amongst twenty-somethings to forty-somethings.

Flashbacks, Downtown Scranton: Retro-themed nightclub popular amongst the thirty-and-forty-something crowd.

Comedy Clubs:

Wise Crackers, Downtown Wilkes-Barre & Scranton

Trendy Cafes/Hotspots/Clubs/Bistros:

Blues Street Blues Cafe, Downtown Scranton
River Street Jazz Cafe, Wilkes-Barre
State Street Grille & Bistro, Clarks Summit
Martini, Downtown Scranton
FUSE Martini Club, Downtown Wilkes-Barre
Wild Horse Saloon, Pittston
Brixx, Downtown Scranton
Banshee, Downtown Scranton
Whistle's, Downtown Scranton
Farley's, Downtown Scranton


Notable Ethnic Eateries:
La Tolteca (Mexican), Wilkes-Barre
Ipanema Brazilian Grille & Steakhouse (Brazilian), Scranton
Thai Rak Thai (Thai), Downtown Scranton
Cafe Beignet (French), Scranton
Theo's Metro (Greek), Kingston
Vidas (Tapas), Downtown Scranton


"Indy Bookstores and Coffee Shops"
Tudor Bookstore & Cafe, Kingston
Himalayan Institute, Honesdale
Northern Lights Espresso Bar, Downtown Scranton
Center Street Coffeehouse, Downtown Scranton
Starbucks, Scranton (2), Wilkes-Barre (3), Dallas (1), Clarks Summit
(1), Dickson City (1), Moosic (1)

Weather

It doesn't really snow "a lot" here; we only average about four feet per year. Our weather is, at best, unpredictable. People often whine about how "cloudy" Scranton is, but we've seemingly had six out of seven days per week being sunny for the past two months, which isn't too shabby in my opinion. We were just up in the 90s and were able to hop into the pool. Today we're about 70 with a gentle breeze. Next week will be back into the 90s, and my fat ***** will be back in an inner tube.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ladyfish View Post
Oh, and are young families abundant?

Thanks!!
That's hard to measure. Young families are most abundant in the more suburban areas of The Abingtons (Clarks Summit Area), North Pocono (Moscow Area), Back Mountain (Dallas Area), and Mountain Top. Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, Pittston, and the rest of the older, more well-established communities seem to be more middle-aged demographically.
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Old 06-22-2007, 01:08 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
29,617 posts, read 65,657,734 times
Reputation: 15060
I also forgot to mention that this area is a hiker's paradise. I HIGHLY-recommend that you visit Ricketts Glen State Park while you're in the area. It's a bit far out of the way (over a half-hour from Wilkes-Barre), but the drive is most certainly worth its weight in gold. Another nice unspoiled area to explore are the Pinchot Trails in Thornhurst, also about a half-hour from Scranton or Wilkes-Barre. Frances Slocum and Lackawanna State Parks, near Dallas and Clarks Summit respectively, also offer plenty of hiking opportunities. I'm continually learning of new natural wonders to explore, so I'll pass them along to you as I discover them.
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Old 06-22-2007, 01:15 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
29,617 posts, read 65,657,734 times
Reputation: 15060
Quote:
Originally Posted by lookin'for"home" View Post
Hi Paul.

I've sent you a PM and haven't heard back from you- so should I take that
to mean that you really want to limit the inquiry to the counties mentioned above?

Thanks.
Check your inbox. Sorry about the delay; my PMs have been swamping me lately!
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:35 PM
 
Location: Lived Large in Parsippany NJ - Lived Larger in Livingston, NJ -- Now Living Huge in Bethlehem PA
460 posts, read 1,961,530 times
Reputation: 447
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrantonWilkesBarre View Post
Good evening, everyone!

I'm typing this as an open invitation for anyone with inquiries about the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area to please let me know here in a reply so I can get back to you as expediently as I possibly can. I've been getting overwhelmed lately by the volume of PMs I've been receiving, and I saw how popular MollyMe's thread has been with her stomping grounds in the Poconos, so I figured creating a similar thread would be a good move on my part.

I may only be 20, but don't let my age fool you. I've taken a keen liking to the Tri-County Area (Lackawanna/Luzerne/Wyoming), and I know these three areas like the back of my hand. As a future homeowner, business owner, and politician in the area, I have a vested interest in doing anything in my power to helping it to thrive. I'd be more than happy to address any and all concerns you might have about this wonderful region that is just starting to rebound after years of decline and neglect.

Hope to hear from you puzzled "lurkers" soon!
-Paul
==============

Hi Paul - how are you?

I just wanted to ask you about the Mountain Top area right off 309 by the high school...how is the area in reference to weather, crime, diversity, employment, entertainment (bars, clubs etc)?

Regards
Felix
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Old 06-24-2007, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
29,617 posts, read 65,657,734 times
Reputation: 15060
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaSkorpion View Post
==============

Hi Paul - how are you?

I just wanted to ask you about the Mountain Top area right off 309 by the high school...how is the area in reference to weather, crime, diversity, employment, entertainment (bars, clubs etc)?

Regards
Felix
Hello again Felix. I'm just fine. How are you? Mountain Top is dependent upon Wilkes-Barre for just about everything. It is a rapidly-growing bedroom community of nearly 20,000 individuals, most of whom are white-collar and commute to either Wilkes-Barre or Hazleton to work. There is one major employment center in Mountain Top, the Crestwood Industrial Park, and the Hanover Industrial Estates aren't too far away in nearby Hanover Township.

Mountain Top, by all accounts, is a boring place to live if you don't have access to a vehicle. There aren't many (if any) sidewalks there, there's not much in the way of commerce besides the banks, chain drugstores, gas stations, and fast-food places along Route 309, and Wilkes-Barre is about a 15-minute drive away. Crime here is nearly non-existent (DUIs seem to be a huge problem down there though), and the Crestwood School District is often in contention with Dallas for being ranked the best public school district in Luzerne County. Many people here belong to St. Jude's Church, along Route 309 (which, FYI, is known as "Mountain Boulevard"), as it is one of the few houses of worship in Mountain Top.

A tornado hit Mountain Top last Fall, and a few vestiges of this still remain (tree stumps where large, old trees once stood, as well as the roof still being torn off of one home near Route 309). At the height of that storm, people in the Mr. Z's Supermarket were injured when the windows blew in and shattered. I believe Mountain Top is still considered a "Tree City USA," even though it will soon be stripped of that title if the massive residential development here continues (there's yet another 1,000+ unit community slated for the Dorrance area). Housing prices here are the highest, on average, in the county, with most people paying in excess of $200,000 for a typical home.

Due to the large number of NY/NJ transplants that are starting to call Mountain Top home, a "Welcome Wagon" group was formed to help the newbies assimilate into their new surroundings. If you consider moving to Mountain Top, you'll most definitely want to seek them out for further assistance. The largest current residential project in Mountain Top are the "Ice Lakes," which is an upscale community located amonst the Ice Ponds not far from Nuangola. Homes here can range up to $750,000!

As far as weather is concerned, Mountain Top, is (obviously) located on the peak of a large mountain. As such, it is not uncommon for it to be raining at 35 degrees in Downtown Wilkes-Barre at one's office and then changing over to snow at 31 degrees on the commute home in Mountain Top. PennDOT tries to do its best to keep Route 309 clear and passable, but the stretch between the community and Wilkes-Barre is windy and downhill---not good ingredients on a dry day, let alone a snowy one. I won't lie to you; it's not easy to make the commute from Mountain Top to Wilkes-Barre during wintry weather. Outside of winter, the rest of the weather there is comparable to the rest of the region, albeit a degree or two cooler due to the elevation.

Diversity? Not at all. I haven't formally-researched this (as "Mountain Top" isn't an official town recognized by the census; rather it is comprised of five townships), but I'd estimate that 97% of the region is middle-class to upper-middle-class white, non-Hispanic, with a small concentration of Asian-Americans (mostly Japanese, Korean, Indian, or Chinese) thrown in for good measure. African-Americans probably number, at best, 1% or less of Mountain Top's population.

Nightlife? Not at all. If you want to hit up a dance club, see an off-Broadway show, see a minor-league sporting event, watch the Philharmonic, shop 'til you drop, etc., you'll have to drive to either Wilkes-Barre or Scranton. While Mountain Top is growing like a thirsty weed, it's still first and foremost a bedroom community to Wilkes-Barre.

Mountain Top, overall, is just your typical "Desperate Housewife", soccer-mom, bland, vanilla type of community. Most homes were built in two waves---either right after the major 1972 flood or from the mid-1990s-present, and probably 75% of them are located in tasteless "slap 'em up quick" subdivisions without curbs, sidewalks, streetlights, etc. Property values here will continue to rise steadily indefinitely due to the "allure" of the community to young families and the solid reputation of the school district, so any home you did purchase would appreciate healthily in value by the time you wanted to move out again (if you did anyways). I personally hate suburbia, but to each his own I suppose.

I did a photo tour of a few neighborhoods in Mountain Top that can be found under the "Photo Tour" announcement at the top of the sub-forum page.
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Old 06-26-2007, 07:52 AM
 
19 posts, read 136,081 times
Reputation: 24
I'm going to take you up on your offer. We are intrigued by your photo tours and want to take a trip up to the Scranton area in the next week or so. We are looking for an older(1890-1920), large(3,500+) home in a decent neighborhood that we can have renovated. Noticed your posts about the "hill section" and was wondering if you could recommend some other areas we could drive through just to get a feel for things. Also, could you recommend some nice, downtown hotels to stay at and some downtown areas to tour for shopping, dinner, etc.
Thanks
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