Transfering to Tinker AFB (Oklahoma City, Norman: for sale, rent, new home)
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We will be transfering to Tinker from North Dakota. I haven't ever been out of ND, although my fiance has. He will be leaving for OK in Feb. and my daughter and I will be joining him this summer. I would like to find a home in a nice area within a 15-20 minute commute from Tinker. I am from a very small community of 1700 people. My daughter is used to the smaller school (35 in her class) She is 13 and will be going into 8th grade. This is a hard age to move, but she is now getting used to the idea. She is also an iceskater, and I have heard they have a program in OKC.
I would really like to find a smaller community, with good school, nice neighbors but close enough so that my fiance doesn't have to have such a long commute. Right now in ND, he drives 45miles each way and he's tired of doing that.
I was wondering about Harrah, Mustang, Nicoma Park, Moore (I know it's a larger community) Any help will be greatly appreciated.
I don't know alot about Ok City, although I have relatives in Moore. I travel to Ok City on occasion (business) but again, am totally ignorant of the neighborhoods. I can tell you that Tinker is in Midwest City, a suburb of Ok City. You may find alot of help on the following Oklahoma forum (just go to the Ok City/Norman section). It seems to be quite a bit more busy in regards to Oklahoma and Oklahoma City in general than this forum.
Personally I would check into Choctaw, it's about a 12 mile or 20 minute drive to Tinker. It's small, starting to see growth and you can be to all the city ammenities in about 15 minutes but still manage to live in a more rural setting. Moore would probably be a bit big for your tastes. Mustang is a nice community but chances are it's farther than your fiance will want to commute. Although probably shorter than his current one. Harrah is 6 miles due west of Choctaw. I don't know much about it, it would just be a little farther away from the city than Choctaw. Although in ND I'm sure you're used to driving. Nicoma Park for all intensive purposes might as well be Midwest City, I've never been there myself. All things considered I'd say look at Choctaw.
Thank you for the info...I actually just finished looking at a house that is for sale that caught my eye and it's located in Choctaw. It was nice on line, so I am sure it must be nice in person too...what is the community like? Are there any Lutheran Churches in the area, I notice when I do some searching on line I mostly see Baptist Churches. What can you tell me about the Choctaw Middle school. Do you know if it's a more rural community and the kids get bused in...what does the city have to offer...shopping (Target) Hospitals, other major business. I definately don't want a "dumpy" town.
Any info/advice is so greatly appreciated.
The city of Choctaw's website (below) seems to be a pretty informative site regarding schools, community development, and such. I seriously doubt that Choctaw is a dumpy town. The website has demographics, school info, community development info, and more. Being as it is in the greater OKC metropolitan area, you should also have access to plenty of places to shop and entertain as well.
Don't know much about Choctaw really. I live in the metro and have never been there. I've just heard many good things about it. All the shopping you need should be 15 minutes away. Real close to Tinker.
St Mark Lutheran Church-Elca is located on a Street called Reno in Midwest City, if you move in the Choctaw area it is around 8 miles west.
There are other Lutheran Churches, St. Marks isn't the only one.
I moved here in 1993 and it took me some time to find my way around.
I have found most people give directions North, South , East, West and etc.
Write this down Reno divides North and South and goes from Choctaw to Yukon (and futher in both directions). Shields Blvd divides East and West. Most of the streets address are going to be like for example 100 S Douglas you will know that will be South of Reno or 15th street and N Douglas ( There is a McDonalds on the coner) that will be North on Reno almost to Tinker Air Force Base.
When I first moved here I got lost, it was terrible. If I had known how the streets ran, it wouldn't had been as scary, there are other streets that run North, South, East and West clear across Oklahoma County get to know them they will be your friend.
Choctaw, Nicoma Park, Spencer, Midwest City, Oklahoma City parts of Mustang, Yukon, Edmond and other towns are part of Oklahoma County.
Buy a map don't leave home without it, untill you know your way around.
Choctaw is southeast of TAFB, very conv., it is growing but still a nice place to live. Nicoma Park connects Choctaw on the south & southwest side .
Nicoma Park is smaller than Choctaw, then you also have Jones and Luther south of Nicoma Park they are small towns. Harrah, McCloud, Meeker are South East of Choctaw. You also have a few small communities North of Tinker.
If you are wanting to stay out of the city but close to Tinker and shopping, doctors, hospital and etc. Just decide if you want to be 10 or 30 mintues work and etc. Mustang is 28 miles from Tinker it isn't a bad drive they have open up highway152 the drive so much quicker !!!
I wish you all the best. I know it is scary but exciting too...
Lisa, we left the Oklahoma City area after living in Oklahoma and Arkansas for 60 years. My husband and I are retired from Tinker (civilians). It sounds like this is your first move as an Air Force wife. Be sure to check in with family services at the base. I believe they also have a housing office. I assume you'll have a sponsor who should be of some help.
The places you mentioned, Nicoma Park, Harrah, Choctaw, don't really have much of what I call "town." Choctaw has some nice residential areas. Don't overlook far southeast Oklahoma City - east of the base. We lived three miles east of Tinker. Look at your map for Post and Westminster Roads (north-south roads.) Also south of SE 29th Street (east-west). Several housing additions in that area. The big jets fly over but it didn't bother us. Living at Minot (?) I imagine you're used to a little airplane noise.
Except for the far eastern part, I wouldn't recommend Midwest City for housing, but they have a new shopping area, across from Tinker. Lowe's, Target, Kohl's, Panera Bread (I miss it!). Also two new Wal-Mart Supercenters in the area. When you get ready for some serious shopping, go to Penn Square in Oklahoma City...go to Norman or Edmond. The whole metro area covers about 800 square miles, so you'll have a lot of choices.
A recommendation: go to the Old Germany restaurant at 15920 SE 29th street. A great restaurant run by a wonderful family.
You can find houses anywhere around Tinker. The metro area is building up quickly. I would recommend Choctaw, Nicoma Park, Harrah in the southeast area if you want a rural feel and some land. They are small towns with a main street feel (My husband call it the Mayberry feel). Not many shopping centers, alot of mom and pop stores. Older buildings but alot of new homes if you prefer newer. We are military also and live in Midwest City (going on 7 years). We are looking to move to Choctow in the near future. What squadron is your Fiance in? My husband is in Supply.
You would have to drive to Midwest City to the new shopping center right across the base to shop at Target. Not that far as the highway is right there. Everything is easily accessible by highway. The base has a new, huge commissary and the BX is less than 4 years old.
Mustang is about 25 -30 minutes to the west and can be a longer drive if the highways are not clear. You have to drive through downtown OKC and that is the pits during commuting times. Alot of new homes and shopping centers there. Good schools I heard. Haven't really spent a lot of time in Moore but that area always gets hit the hardest by Tornados. It's like it is smack dab in the middle of the weather lime every time.
Class size here usually runs 18-24 students per class. I would not recommend the Midwest City/Del City school district for your child. I live in Midwest City and my kids used to go to Mid/Del Schools. Mid/Del likes to tout itself as one of the best districts in the area but that is because they like to cover things up. My kids used to attend Mid/Del schools, but I pulled them two years ago and now homeschool them. Mid/Del allowed a child to bring a knife to my son's class and threaten the kids and then tried to cover it up. They didn't even follow their own rules. They actually went as far as to tell the kids to not tell the parents. The teachers were great but the school administration is alot to be desired for letting these things happen. The Superintendent and several of her assistants have been replaced. but I still wouldn't recommend the district.
I hope you have a successful move and welcome to Tinker AFB.
Would recommend the SE section of OKC. Have lived in the area for most of my life, and my husband has been here for 14 years as active duty AF. The lots are acre plus with tree (usually depending on the builder!). There is a large amount of growth occurring in this area of the city. We are not quite MWC (Midwest City), and are south of Choctaw area. However, you can decide how far east you go and choose between Mid-Del and Choctaw school districts. There are also some good private schools in the area that have small class sizes. Our son attends Life Christian Academy (www.lifechristianacademy.com) and we are happy with it. Agree that other than eastern MWC is probably not the best area. Lots of rent homes due to the in/out of military families. MWC is great for shopping though. Highway access is a HUGE consideration when you buy a home in OKC. The metro area spreads across a large area and OKC was at one time considered the third largest city in land area. Mustang and Yukon are also nice areas, but they are quite a commute to Tinker, and you have to go on the "crosstown" which is I-40 through downtown. It is heavily traveled, about to undergo MAJOR construction, and there are always accidents. Moore and Norman are also nice towns/cities, but I-35 is a nightmare during the commute! Again, accidents are to be expected as is construction. Do check out Family Support when you get here. They can be helpful too. Consider renting for 6 months before making a purchase so you have an opportunity to consider where you want to live before purchasing. Good luck!
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