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Old 01-13-2015, 11:40 AM
 
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Hi guys.

We are a family of four- two kids in elementary school. I am a stay at home mom and husband is a software engineer. We have for a while been considering moving farther south. I have looked into somewhat (but not yet visited) parts of North and South Carolina, and Virginia. The Raleigh area is sounding so great for families.. and it may be the best bet in NC as far as employment opportunities for my husband (?).

As the summer weather in NC is hotter/more humid, and for longer, than here in CT, I am wondering about opportunities to 'stay cool'. If I'm not mistaken, getting to the beach from the Raleigh area (eg- Apex/Cary/Wake Forest) would be a 2-3 hour trip, depending on where on the coast, am I correct? While this is certainly doable, even as a day trip, it is a bit of a trek. I was wondering if most people do it. And, how often during the hot/humid summer months do you residents of the Raleigh area get to the beaches?
Do you more often go and swim in lakes that are more near-by? Or swimming holes? Which ones would you recommend or not, and why?

Also, I'm thinking about swimming pools. I don't know that we would want to take on a house with its own a pool. Maybe a home in a planned community (HOA) with a pool. But what about town/neighborhood pools? Do you guys have them, in say Apex, Cary, Wake Forest...? Are they conveniently located? Do you make use of them? Do you like them? (Why/why not?)

I would love to hear from you! Thank you!
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Old 01-13-2015, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, NC
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I'd say most people use neighborhood swimming pools to cool off. The beach is pretty far - mostly good for overnight/weekend trips unless you are on the eastern side of Raleigh, then a day trip makes more sense. But again, that would mostly be on the weekend. There are lakes around here, too, if you are brave enough to swim in them. I won't. Many neighborhoods, however, have swimming pools. And if they don't there are swim clubs or country clubs to join. Some pools have longer seasons than the typical Memorial Day to Labor Day that you would probably have in CT. Our pool, for example, opens Mother's Day Weekend and stays open on weekends for the month of September. Many kids do swim team which is usually from mid-May until end of July.

One thing this area is sorely lacking are public water parks and spraygrounds. Where we lived before there were quite a few public pools that had slides and sprays. There aren't very many here at all, which is kind of surprising and disappointing.
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Old 01-13-2015, 11:49 AM
Status: "heading straight into summer weather" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: under the beautiful Carolina blue
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Most of the newer subdivisions around here have a pool. That's pretty much the center of summer entertainment when you have kids.
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Old 01-13-2015, 11:55 AM
 
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Hey, michgc. Thanks for your post.

Thank you for the longer season for some pools. I did mean to ask about that, as the hot weather lasts longer than up here. Would you say it's very hot from about early May through September?

May I ask why you won't swim in the lakes?

twingles, thank you too. so when you say subdivision, are you talking about a kind of neighborhood of houses, or really a planned community with common/hoa fees?

thanks!
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
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Originally Posted by bbear468 View Post
May I ask why you won't swim in the lakes?
Read this report on algae and coliform bacteria in Falls Lake, and you will see why people don't swim in the lakes: http://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/who...nt?oid=2441223

I think the warmer weather and and shallow water contributes to the problem.
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:15 PM
 
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There are plenty of places to swim but I think the lakes are fine. Kerr Lake (a little farther north) is very popular and even Falls of Neuse Lake is fine to swim in. There is a lot of talk about bacteria, etc. but we have a lot of friends who swim in the lakes without any issues.
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:21 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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Everything said here is correct--beaches are 2-3 hours away (more if you want the Outer Banks) and while it's possible to do a weekend beach trip, people usually don't unless they have a beach cottage of their own.

Almost every neighborhood ("subdivision") has its own pool and while I don't have kids nor use my own neighborhood's pool, that does seem to be Ground Zero for kids to hang out when it's hot. It's not particularly common to have your own pool in the backyard (unlike places like FL or Calif, where it is almost "expected") so you aren't unusual there.

You didn't say what industry your husband is in, as far as employment opportunities, but I would certainly advise his finding a job BEFORE moving anywhere, and search in numerous cities rather than banking on one area to have something. While the job market in most fields is good here, there are also a LOT of people competing for those jobs trying to move here, so the competition may be lower in other cities in NC, SC, or VA. And of course you'll want to visit any area to look around before even thinking about moving there.

But, if a neighborhood pool is fine with you, that will be very easy to find in any suburban neighborhood in any of the states you mention.
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:32 PM
 
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Thank you to those who have responded so far!

I will have to look into the bacteria in the lakes...

Francois, thanks. I was trying to figure out whether 'subdivision' pool meant a pool that is paid for by HOA fees, or if it meant a local area's pool, where residents pay per entry or maybe with a season pass...

And, my my apologies. I thought I'd included that my husband is a software engineer.

Thanks, all!
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
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It's hard to think about keeping cool around here right with an ice storm on the way! BRRRRR!

I do NOT swim in lakes around here either, they're gross, muddy, slimy and commonly have high levels fecal coliform bacteria due to the warmth.

We go to the community pool, kids are on swim team. There are some HOA pools open only to the specific neighborhood, some community pools where you pay a yearly fee to become a member and some public pools where you can pay as you go. We also go to the beach, the mountains where it's usually cooler and when it's really hot, we find indoor stuff to do. (art classes, museums etc).
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:43 PM
 
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Originally Posted by bbear468 View Post
Thank you to those who have responded so far!

I will have to look into the bacteria in the lakes...

Francois, thanks. I was trying to figure out whether 'subdivision' pool meant a pool that is paid for by HOA fees, or if it meant a local area's pool, where residents pay per entry or maybe with a season pass...

And, my my apologies. I thought I'd included that my husband is a software engineer.

Thanks, all!
You'd be hard pressed to find a sub-division without a pool. And yes, the fees are paid for by HOA. All the apartment complexes I saw had pool. The apartment complex I moved into had a heated outdoor pool. That pool was a lot of fun throughout the year. A lot more people came to the pool. The complex even organized pool parties in the summer. I live in a house now and we have a pool, but, I have never been swimming in it.

I lived in the Nutmeg state for about 5 years by the way. Proud UConn Grad. Miss the food, but, nothing else. You'd love it here in the Triangle.
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