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Old 03-13-2012, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Manhattan
3 posts, read 7,863 times
Reputation: 13

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I appreciate everyone's comments/advice; it definitely helps provide a different look at the city from those who know it best.

We've visited the Finger Lakes/wine region and Toronto before, but never spent a significant time in Rochester until this weekend.

We tried out a few restaurants in the city (Tournedos and another place called Max Eastman) as well as Simply Crepes in the Pittsford canaltown area (great brunch place!). We visited a park near the city near a large reservoir, but cannot remember the name. We also walked on a trail in a place called Fairport. We spent a lot of time driving through Brighton and Pittsford to get a feel for each area.

Our initial impressions: Weather seems decent, though about 5-10 degrees colder than New York. It is also more overcast. The city center is nice, but the areas that you see on the parkways leaving the city are a bit rundown and remind me of Queens/Brooklyn.

We drove down "East Avenue" and saw a few magnificent homes. Our concern about these homes is the close proximity to the rundown parts of the city- safety/home invasions could be a problem.

The suburbs seem like a great place to raise a family. We found a few areas that we absolutely loved. One was in Brighton on "Sandringham Road" (off a major road called Elmwood) near a large country club. The houses are classic stone "tudor style" and the neighborhood is leafy. We also drove through an area in Brighton between two country clubs on a street called "Knollwood Drive." These homes had a decent amount of land, especially compared to New York.

Pittsford seems nice; the village has a classic feel. The other areas of pittsford are hard to characterize: farm fields mixed with dense areas with modest homes mixed with private drives mixed with long culdesacs with massive McMansion style homes. Apart from the village proper, there seemed to be very few classic/classic looking new construction homes.

The "Monroe Avenue" plaza area was nice and we stopped a store called Wegmans, which some locals told us to visit. WOW! Never before have I seen a supermarket this incredible. Our friends in New York smugly believe that Whole Foods/Trader Joe's are the finest- they have NO idea how much better Wegmans is than NY supermarkets.

At this early stage, it is hard to determine what area we are leaning toward, though we've settled it: we want to come to Rochester.

We do have more questions about the area though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bamboodude View Post
You live in Pittsford or Brighton. Pittsford is slightly superior but if you want to politely flaunt your wealth one of the old estates in Brighton is the better deal.
Why would Pittsford be considered superior? Is there some "x" factor that makes it better than Brighton?

Also, what does the average person in Brighton or Pittsford do for a living?

As for cars, we saw a Lamborghini and an Aston Martin while we were visiting, but beyond that, only Range Rovers and BMW/Mercedes. Not a lot of exotics in Rochester.

Our big question, perhaps the most important, is that of status/competition in Brighton and Pittsford. In Manhattan, most of our friends are early 30s Ivy League graduates who work in Law, Medicine, and Financial Services. There is incredible pressure to send your children to $50,000 kindergartens, to spend lavishly on vacations, to wear expensive clothes, and to live in the "right" apartment (or move to a large house in Westchester, as many of our friends are beginning to do). While we enjoy nice things and will continue to do so in another city, the pressure from everyone to do so is frustrating.

My question: Is there a lot of gossip/competition about material things and status in Brighton/Pittsford? Is there a lot of namedropping/discussion about where your kids are going to school?

We are moving upstate to find a nice place to raise a family and we would prefer it if we could avoid this type of pettiness.

Again, we appreciate everyone's comments- you have all been immensely helpful.
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Old 03-13-2012, 07:40 AM
 
49,779 posts, read 71,372,284 times
Reputation: 10961
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielR View Post
I appreciate everyone's comments/advice; it definitely helps provide a different look at the city from those who know it best.

We've visited the Finger Lakes/wine region and Toronto before, but never spent a significant time in Rochester until this weekend.

We tried out a few restaurants in the city (Tournedos and another place called Max Eastman) as well as Simply Crepes in the Pittsford canaltown area (great brunch place!). We visited a park near the city near a large reservoir, but cannot remember the name. We also walked on a trail in a place called Fairport. We spent a lot of time driving through Brighton and Pittsford to get a feel for each area.

Our initial impressions: Weather seems decent, though about 5-10 degrees colder than New York. It is also more overcast. The city center is nice, but the areas that you see on the parkways leaving the city are a bit rundown and remind me of Queens/Brooklyn.

We drove down "East Avenue" and saw a few magnificent homes. Our concern about these homes is the close proximity to the rundown parts of the city- safety/home invasions could be a problem.

The suburbs seem like a great place to raise a family. We found a few areas that we absolutely loved. One was in Brighton on "Sandringham Road" (off a major road called Elmwood) near a large country club. The houses are classic stone "tudor style" and the neighborhood is leafy. We also drove through an area in Brighton between two country clubs on a street called "Knollwood Drive." These homes had a decent amount of land, especially compared to New York.

Pittsford seems nice; the village has a classic feel. The other areas of pittsford are hard to characterize: farm fields mixed with dense areas with modest homes mixed with private drives mixed with long culdesacs with massive McMansion style homes. Apart from the village proper, there seemed to be very few classic/classic looking new construction homes.

The "Monroe Avenue" plaza area was nice and we stopped a store called Wegmans, which some locals told us to visit. WOW! Never before have I seen a supermarket this incredible. Our friends in New York smugly believe that Whole Foods/Trader Joe's are the finest- they have NO idea how much better Wegmans is than NY supermarkets.

At this early stage, it is hard to determine what area we are leaning toward, though we've settled it: we want to come to Rochester.

We do have more questions about the area though.



Why would Pittsford be considered superior? Is there some "x" factor that makes it better than Brighton?

Also, what does the average person in Brighton or Pittsford do for a living?

As for cars, we saw a Lamborghini and an Aston Martin while we were visiting, but beyond that, only Range Rovers and BMW/Mercedes. Not a lot of exotics in Rochester.

Our big question, perhaps the most important, is that of status/competition in Brighton and Pittsford. In Manhattan, most of our friends are early 30s Ivy League graduates who work in Law, Medicine, and Financial Services. There is incredible pressure to send your children to $50,000 kindergartens, to spend lavishly on vacations, to wear expensive clothes, and to live in the "right" apartment (or move to a large house in Westchester, as many of our friends are beginning to do). While we enjoy nice things and will continue to do so in another city, the pressure from everyone to do so is frustrating.

My question: Is there a lot of gossip/competition about material things and status in Brighton/Pittsford? Is there a lot of namedropping/discussion about where your kids are going to school?

We are moving upstate to find a nice place to raise a family and we would prefer it if we could avoid this type of pettiness.

Again, we appreciate everyone's comments- you have all been immensely helpful.
Considering that this is Upstate NY, it will most likely be more tame than what you have experienced Downstate. Even the more affluent areas in Upstate NY metros are relatively down to earth in comparison to similar areas in biger metros. I say that because even in the affluent communities in Upstate NY metros, you will still find some middle class folks. It is not uncommon to find homes for 150k in such communities up here, if not for less.
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:39 AM
 
120 posts, read 268,263 times
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Here's my opinion.

Brighton is older and seems to have a lot of Academic types. Historically a very wealthy area but also more diversity on that front.

Pittsford has for years had the reputation of being the upscale trendy place for lack of a better word and in recent years (like the last 20) has seemed to attract the more well to do than say Brighton. It seems like many of the Doctors in the area live in Pittsford as well as the wealthier attorneys etc.


That being said plenty of "regular folk" live in Pittsford and there are doctors and attorneys in Brighton. (I am regular folk and I live in a $70k house in the city). I am in no way shape or form a social climber and don't give a rat's a**. I drive a 2000 rusty Volvo Station Wagon.

As far as home invasions in the more upscale areas in Rochester, not really a big issue here. A majority, but not all, of the home invasions in Rochester seem to involve drug houses where this a lot of available cash.

There are very few private schools in this area and I believe it's because there are many excellent schools.

Good luck with whatever you do.
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:08 AM
 
Location: Hamburg, NY
1,167 posts, read 2,225,637 times
Reputation: 1063
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielR View Post
Our big question, perhaps the most important, is that of status/competition in Brighton and Pittsford. In Manhattan, most of our friends are early 30s Ivy League graduates who work in Law, Medicine, and Financial Services. There is incredible pressure to send your children to $50,000 kindergartens, to spend lavishly on vacations, to wear expensive clothes, and to live in the "right" apartment (or move to a large house in Westchester, as many of our friends are beginning to do). While we enjoy nice things and will continue to do so in another city, the pressure from everyone to do so is frustrating.

My question: Is there a lot of gossip/competition about material things and status in Brighton/Pittsford? Is there a lot of namedropping/discussion about where your kids are going to school?

We are moving upstate to find a nice place to raise a family and we would prefer it if we could avoid this type of pettiness.

Again, we appreciate everyone's comments- you have all been immensely helpful.
No, you won't find that type of pretentiousness in the Rochester area. From the sound of it, you would be very happy in the Rochester area. It will give you a whole new outlook on life. Since money is no problem ,you will also have the money to escape Rochester when you want (the long cold winter are the only downside of Rochester in my opinion).

Don't move to the hell called the NYC suburbs. I live there now and I can't wait to get out! It's Manhattan in attitude with bigger yards (at least the wealthier areas such as North Shore LI, Connecticut, parts of Westchester).

The Rochester area has a very high quality of life. I deeply regret ever moving away. (I lived my first 25 years of life in the Buffalo and Rochester areas)
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:29 AM
 
120 posts, read 268,263 times
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There definitely is some attitude with the more "well to do" or at least wannabees and it seems to be the 30 something ages. And this is nothing more than my personal experience. My son went to pre-school at RMSC. It seemed like many of the families were a little wealthier and lived in the Park Ave/East Ave area. One day we heard a mom say "I'm going to have to fire my maid, she broke another statue". A statue really? I think no matter where you go you're going to have people that want to impress. As others have mentioned there are exclusive country clubs and a definite social scene.

But on the other hand there are plenty of "well educated doing well on the financial front" people here that don't buy into that. For a young family there is definitely a lot to do with the museums, parks etc. YMCA's are a big thing in our area. Home | rochesterymca.org We have several nice ones and they all have reciprocity with one another. Most have parent and child swim classes for real little ones and babysitting while you workout I think it's about $95 a year for a family membership. They offer a lot of nice programs and they're not exclusive.

Your child is only 6 months old but there are a lot things going on as they get older. Check out the Eastman Community Music School for some great programs for kids that start as young as 4 months (with a parent) Preschool and Elementary School Programs - Eastman Community Music School
I have 2 kids ages 8 and 11. The 11yo is home schooled and the 8yo goes to a charter school in the city of Rochester. They both took classes at Eastman Community Music School when they were younger. They both Irish Dance, play chess and play in a recreational soccer league in the summer. The home schooled one also bowls (that's big around here).
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Old 03-13-2012, 12:59 PM
 
1,141 posts, read 1,082,383 times
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There are a few Bentlys here, but not many. We used to have the world's largest Rolls Royce dealer in suburban Palmyra.

As for homes, I agree with most of the others. Pittsford, Mendon, Brighton, or why not just live on Canandagua Lake year round. If you ski, Bristol mnt. is just minutes away. Another recomendation is Lake Rd. in Webster. I know of at least one multi million dollar house for sale. Very nice. Good luck.
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Old 03-13-2012, 05:50 PM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
1,191 posts, read 2,470,911 times
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Rochester does have its namedropping crowd, and they come in a couple of different flavors, but they're the exception. People there will ask you what you do, which is typical and considered normal conversation, I think. The wanna be's, interestingly enough, are state college grads and sundry other locals who look down their noses at anybody who didn't get a soft science degree, teaching degree, soft business degree, etc., and/or whose daddy didn't get them $28K per year job. The rest of the locals are for the most part down to earth and productive, industrious people.

There is plenty to do for kids of all ages, around there, and the public safety is generally superior to that of most metros.

I'd imagine there are few homes in your price range within Monroe County. Shoot for $750 to $900 or so. Problem is your property taxes would put you in the $40K+ range.
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Old 03-13-2012, 06:45 PM
 
49,779 posts, read 71,372,284 times
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Here are some examples of some homes for sale that may be of interest to the OP: Nothnagle.com - Property Search Results
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:28 PM
 
Location: Rochester, New York
192 posts, read 409,874 times
Reputation: 282
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielR View Post
Why would Pittsford be considered superior? Is there some "x" factor that makes it better than Brighton?

Also, what does the average person in Brighton or Pittsford do for a living?
I don’t see any reason why Pittsford would be superior to Brighton. I would actually prefer Brighton because it has more character and it’s also much closer to the attractions in the city. Like alw1964 pointed out both Brighton and Pittsford are mixed, there are more affluent people in both of those towns then in other Monroe county suburbs but don’t be surprised to see teachers, firefighters, policeman ect. Also because Brighton is in close proximity to the University of Rochester and RIT a lot of professors choose to live there. Brighton is also slightly more liberal and more diverse then Pittsford.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielR View Post
We drove down "East Avenue" and saw a few magnificent homes. Our concern about these homes is the close proximity to the rundown parts of the city- safety/home invasions could be a problem.
East Ave and really every other part of the SE quadrant are very safe, so you won’t need to worry about break-ins or anything like that. The one disadvantage I can think of living on East Ave is that you would want to send your kids to private schools. I know you mentioned earlier that you were already planning iton. But the schools in Brighton and Pittsford could compete with any private school. Both have great teachers, tons of AP/ES classes, and take college prep very seriously. You wouldn’t be losing anything if you sent your kids to Brighton or Pittsford Schools. The only difference is that the private schools might have more money for sports equipment and smart boards. I think Brighton schools even do tours so you can see for yourself if it’s up to you standards before you send your kids there.
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Old 03-17-2012, 12:21 AM
 
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There are plenty of wealthy people in the Rochester area and not just in Brighton and Pittsord. They aren't blatant about it. They normally don't exhibit their wealth by buying the most expensive home they can afford.

Smart people don't buy ultra-expensive cars in Rochester because of the salt on the roads in the winter.

There are many far more comfortable areas for a young couple to live than a mansion on East Avenue.
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