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Unread 08-01-2009, 03:43 PM
 
5 posts, read 16,048 times
Reputation: 16
Default What's good about Waco, TX?

So my husband is thinking we should move to Waco, TX. He's a Baylor grad, and although I would agree that the campus is lovely, I've not really experienced much else about Waco except a quick tour of the campus.

I've looked at a couple of touristy sites and I'm aware of some of the museums. What is good about Waco? What things do you like the most about living there?

Would you recommend it for a 30-something fairly conservative Christian couple?
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Unread 08-01-2009, 03:53 PM
Bo
 
Location: San Antonio
14,014 posts, read 18,776,995 times
Reputation: 8834
I've never lived in Waco, but I've visited a couple of times.

I was going to mention the Mayborn Museum Complex, but it sounds like you already know about that.

The Baylor campus is nice, but you've already been there.
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Unread 08-01-2009, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Waco, TX
25 posts, read 48,964 times
Reputation: 21
I guess "good" is in the eyes of the beholder and any place is really what you make of it. I love it here because I love the small town feel with city amenities. I love the location with easy access to anywhere in TX and beyond. DFW and Austin are short drives away. I think the people are super friendly overall. Hardly ever do I run into any significant traffic. I LOVE THAT!

There are so many reasons why I find the Waco area a great fit for my family. Aside from what I’ve already said, first and foremost, my husband had a job opportunity to move here that no one could beat. Since then, he has moved to another company and still loves his job. We were able to buy a nice home for a reasonable price (especially when compared with some other parts of the country). We live in China Spring, which I am very happy with. I like the schools and love the location. The community is great. There are many well-loved communities in our area.

One thing that’s really neat about Waco is the diverse terrain. We have flat land to rolling hills to wooded areas, and some areas that are just downright beautiful. I love overlooking the lake or driving through Cameron park. There are some really pretty areas in some of our surrounding communities as well.

We do have some depressed areas like any city. But we are growing. They just opened the new Hillcrest Hospital off I35 and Hwy6, The Mammoth Park is getting closer to completion, Space X is testing space rocket engines, L-3 is hiring, Downtown is in the midst of renovation…so many things are happening around here.

I’ve lived a lot of places, this is the best fit so far. It’s just the right size, love the weather, and can’t beat the people. Hope this info. helps you some.



HERE ARE SOME OF MY FAVORITE WACO AREA LINKS:


Waco Tourism Site has great information about Waco and Surrounding areas. A must visit.

Official Waco, Texas Tourism Information - Hotels, Attractions, Restaurants, Museums and more.

Waco Downtown Master Plan Meeting Video. Very interesting stuff.

WCCC-TV - Waco, Texas (http://www.waco-texas.com/city_depts/municipal_information/watch-dtw-master-plan.html - broken link)

Latest Accountability Ratings for Texas Schools. Many area schools did quite well while a few others are struggling. Great information, especially if you have school aged children. Search by County, McLennan to get a good list of area schools.

2009 Accountability Rating System

The Waco Tribune Herald Online

WacoTrib. - Waco Tx News, Sports, Weather, Events, Classifieds & more | Wacotrib.com


Space X. Test facility in McGregor TX. Very exciting stuff.

Space Exploration Technologies Corporation - SpaceX


Waco Mammoth Site. Another exciting project going on here in Waco. This place is in the works for National Monument Status.

Official Waco Mammoth Site - Waco, Texas

Last edited by Wendy Montoya; 08-01-2009 at 04:37 PM.. Reason: reformatting
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Unread 08-01-2009, 05:00 PM
 
5,033 posts, read 7,217,535 times
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You can do a search as many threads have been written about Waco. Here is one of them:

Why is Waco hated so much?
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Unread 08-02-2009, 12:51 PM
 
5 posts, read 16,048 times
Reputation: 16
Default Thanks so much!

These replies have been great! Thanks especially Wendy! I appreciate the quick and detailed replies!

Keep it coming if anyone else has a favorite place in Waco to let me know about that would be appreciated too.

It sounds like a great place to be -- I'm getting really excited!
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Unread 08-02-2009, 01:23 PM
 
Location: Waco, TX
25 posts, read 48,964 times
Reputation: 21
You're Welcome jmd317. I hope I helped some. I've lived so many places in the US and overseas that I learned long ago that any place really is as good as you make it.
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Unread 08-02-2009, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Underneath the Pecan Tree
15,753 posts, read 17,555,394 times
Reputation: 6516
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmd317 View Post
These replies have been great! Thanks especially Wendy! I appreciate the quick and detailed replies!

Keep it coming if anyone else has a favorite place in Waco to let me know about that would be appreciated too.

It sounds like a great place to be -- I'm getting really excited!
Waco is really an underrated city imo. It has an amazing world-class park which runs right alongside the Brazos River. The park is has lots of unique gems located within it, such as Jacob's Ladder, Proctor Springs, Miss Nellie's Pretty place, abandoned shacks and houses, as well as the Witch's Castle (people say it dosen't exist though).

You also have lots of grit and historic sites scattered around the city. Cameron Park Zoo, Dr. Pepper Museum, the upcoming downtown area,etc
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Unread 08-02-2009, 10:24 PM
 
635 posts, read 1,237,171 times
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Based on your description of yourself, you'll fit right in. You can't swing a dead cat around here without hitting a church. Waco is actually a much prettier city than it presents by a drive through on I-35. In fact, I-35 pretty much passes through the ugliest and most blighted sections of Waco. I suspect a lot of Texans have a negative impression of Waco simply due to driving trough in I-35 between Austin and Dallas/Fort Worth. And 99% of them never get off the freeway to see what else there is.

The Baylor campus is nice but there are lots of other nice areas in Waco. If you're driving around to explore I'd suggest the following:

1. Drive up Austin Avenue from downtown to where it ends at 38th St. Many of the oldest mansions in Waco are along the upper parts of Austin Avenue in the Castle Heights neighborhood. You'll see some amazing century-old mansions along Austin Ave

2. Drive Along Lake Shore Drive and then along Ridgewood Dr. bordering the Ridgewood Country Club for nice views of the lake and of the newer mansions along the lake. Some of the nicest houses in Waco are on the winding dead-end streets between Lake Shore Drive and Lake Waco.

3. Explore Cameron Park and Cameron Park Zoo. Waco has one of the larger urban parks in the country. It's not as large as Forest Park in Portland but pretty impressive. There are great views of the surrounding area from the tops of some of the bluffs in Cameron Park.

4. Drive through the McLennan County Community College (MCC) Campus on the north end of Cameron Park. While Baylor is nice, I think MCC actually has a prettier location on top of a ridge surrounded by forests. MCC is undergoing a massive construction project, expanding and building a variety of new buildings that will are very cutting edge architecture and will achieve the highest ratings for "green" environmentally efficient buildings. I've been to a lot of community colleges and MCC is one of the nicest.

If you have kids or are thinking about it then you'll probably end up thinking about the suburbs. The suburbs of Woodway and Hewitt are in the Midway ISD which has 6 elementary schools, all of them ranked as exemplary and feed into Midway HS which is on of the top public high schools in the state. This past year Midway was narrowly edged out by Friendswood in Houston for the 4A Lone Star cup which is awarded to the school with the highest combined performance in all interscholastic athletic and academic competitions. This past year Midway trounced schools like Highland Park and Lake Travis from the wealthy suburbs of Dallas and Austin. Another popular residential area with good schools is China Spring to the northwest of Waco. A smaller school district but also highly rated.

Inner-city Waco has a lot of poverty which tends to drag down the performance of the Waco schools. Some of them are pretty tough. It's a vicious cycle because most Waco families with means end up either sending their kids to private schools in the area or moving out to the suburbs to attend Midway or China Spring schools. Which only makes things more difficult for the Waco schools to perform if the most supportive parents abandon them for private schools and the suburbs.

My wife and I moved here from the west coast 6 years ago for her career. We're raising our 3 girls here and are basically happy with the area. We've seen lots of improvements over the past 6 years so the city is going in the right direction. And it has a lot of possibility. That said, there is also a lot of poverty and social problems in Waco as well. Of course that's the case with pretty much any Texas city of any size except for the wealthy suburban enclaves like Southlake near Dallas and the Woodlands near Houston.

Finally one nice thing about Waco is that it is located midway between all the large cities in Texas. Fort Worth and Austin are each 1.5 hours away. Dallas (at least the nicer parts of it) is 2 hours away. Houston and San Antonio are each 3 hours away. You'll have a dozen world-class museums, 6 zoos, and endless other attractions waiting to explore on the weekends in those cities. And you are not really that far from the hill country to the west of Austin. There is a lot of really pretty countryside to explore on the weekends, especially to the northwest, west, and southwest of Waco. Basically I prefer the countryside and country roads to the west of I-35 rather than the east.
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Unread 08-02-2009, 11:07 PM
 
Location: 75025 (previously 75254, 90505, 90010, and 60614)
9,661 posts, read 9,072,234 times
Reputation: 6096
My grandmother lives in Waco. Ive always enjoyed visiting. When I was a boy, my parents would send me from our home in Los Angeles to stay for 3 weeks or so. I was always amazed at how friendly people were there. Coming from LA, Waco has a very country feel, but at the same time I wouldnt consider the people that way. Dont think I could live there, but a very quiet and charming city in my opinion.

If you are a conservative family, you should fit right in. Theres a small liberal faction there from what my grandmother says, but it is indeed small.
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Unread 08-02-2009, 11:30 PM
 
635 posts, read 1,237,171 times
Reputation: 546
Quote:
Originally Posted by LAnative10 View Post
If you are a conservative family, you should fit right in. Theres a small liberal faction there from what my grandmother says, but it is indeed small.
No, it's not that small. Waco is actually represented by more Democratic politicians than Republican. Waco is a multi-ethnic city with large black and Hispanic populations.

It would be more accurate to state that the dominant White/Anglo/Baptist majority population within Waco is largely conservative or libertarian. And the suburbs (like most suburbs in Texas) are especially so.
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