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Old 01-09-2010, 07:59 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6 posts, read 44,577 times
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Hi! We took a little road trip today to tour some Westchester towns, and I found a house I love in Croton-on-Hudson. I have done some blanket searches on the board but would love to hear any and all comments on the town. Pros & cons are very welcome.

My questions: are there any good parent resources in the Croton area? We have a great online Yahoo group for my Brooklyn neighborhood and it's been an invaluable resource for general advice and research on pediatricians, dentists, etc. Speaking of pediatricians, any recs there?

What do parents do for preK in the Croton area? Are there any preschools that stand out?

How active are the recreation and sports programs through the town?

What's the best way to get involved in the community and make friends? Are there book clubs, parent groups, newcomer clubs?

My thoughts so far are:

Pros:
-Can get a good amount of house for the money & taxes don't seem out of sight

-Pretty parks
-Decent schools/small school system
-Outside village center, homes have some rural-ish settings
-Lots of cute non-chain shops

Cons
-Itís one hour from Brooklyn (and all our friends and family!)


Thanks in advance!
Anne in Brooklyn
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Old 01-10-2010, 10:14 AM
 
Location: Yorktown Heights NY
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Our friends who live in the Mt Airy Trails section of Croton have an active community association and local playgroups, pot lucks, etc. Friends who live in other parts of Croton don't have organized neighborhood groups, but there are plenty of local groups and easy ways to meet people. I sent you a DM with a link to a Croton social-networking site. There's also at least two organized playgroups in Croton, as well as many others in surrounding towns. My neighborhood in Yorktown has a great community association and a Yahoo Group, and I bet lots of other areas do too.

There are lots of good pre-k programs around, depending on your kids and needs. The Croton Community Nursery is good, as is the Center Preschool. Lots of Croton kids go to All Aboard in Ossining and to the Montessori in Yorktown (there's also one in Croton). You'll have lots of choices.

Personally I'd say the best things about Croton are the setting, the natural beauty, the great parks on the Hudson and the access to great nature preserves and hiking nearby. You can live just outside of the village center in Teatown or Mt Airy and feel like you're in the country. The town has a few good restaurants, a good coffee house, a decent arts association (Croton Council on the Arts), and a great gourmet food store. There are some big box chain stores in town, and you're close to more on Route 6 in Cortlandt and in Ossining. The downside is a relative lack of restaurants and other commercial options and the fact that the commercial areas are spread out around town with no single center. Friends who live in the ceter of town complain that even though the town should be walkable it really isn't and they end up driving all the time. But you're less than 15 minutes from loads of restaurants, stores, movies, bookstores, galleries, etc. in Peekskill, Tarrytown, Ossining, and Yorktown. A bit further away, Mt. Kisco is a relative mecca.

The train commute is excellent. There are lot of train options and the ride is gorgeous and pretty fast. I do it daily. I live a little over 10 minutes from the station in Yorktown, but the commute to my office is still only 20 minutes longer than it used to be from Brooklyn--and it is a lot more pleasant. The downside of course is having to catch a train, which does suck.

You'll also find plenty of ex-Brooklynites in the area. Lots of our neighbors are from Park Slope (with most of the rest coming from the upper west side) and we know a number of ex-Brooklynites in Croton.
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Old 01-10-2010, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Live in NY State, work in CT
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The couple who owned the place I worked at from the mid-90s until last year lived in the Mt. Airy section. They loved the "country atmosphere", the one thing they don't like about it is that it is "remote enough" and "hilly enough" to be a real pain compared to surrounding areas during winter weather, they say a lot of their neighbors own 4x4's (and they themselves a couple of years after moving there traded their cars for the same) for that reason. Good luck!
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Old 01-10-2010, 03:51 PM
 
Location: Yorktown Heights NY
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Our friends in Mt. Airy have a Subaru Forester and a VW Golf and (another set of friends) two Volvo wagons. We live in a similarly hilly area and have a Subaru Imprezza and a VW Pasat and both do very well all year round--and both are extremely popular cars in the area. Even if you live smack in the center of town you'll want a car with all-wheel drive (although cooper minis seem awfully popular in the area).
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Old 01-19-2010, 04:58 AM
 
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My family is also interested in relocating to Croton. Could someone tell me where the "boundaries" of the Mt. Airy section would be? Thanks!
Megan
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Old 01-19-2010, 08:48 AM
 
Location: Yorktown Heights NY
1,316 posts, read 4,564,505 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mclairch View Post
My family is also interested in relocating to Croton. Could someone tell me where the "boundaries" of the Mt. Airy section would be? Thanks!
Megan
There's a small area called Mt Airy Trails. This is off of Mt Airy Road just on the northern edge of the village center and all of the streets have "Trail" in th ename (Moutain Trail, Sunset Trail, Park Trail, etc.). This area was a communist commune that grew up around the home of John Reed (whose house on Mt Airy Road is now for sale.) and it consists largely of cottages that have been expanded over the years. The area has a shared wooded reserve (the last official part of the commune) and a strong community organization. I have friends who live there and it is very nice. Lots of "creative professionals" and artsy types.

The larger area of Mt Airy is pretty much everything around and off of Mt Airy Road, East Mount Airy Road, and West Mount Airy Road (including Colabaugh Pond Road). I am pretty sure that all of it is in the Croton school district, but some of the outer edges might be in Hendrick Hudson. It is a lovely area with a beautifull hilly landcape and many great older homes--and some great modern ones, too.
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Old 01-20-2010, 08:57 AM
 
132 posts, read 447,310 times
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Thanks! That's good to know. Sound like a nice area...
Megan
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Old 03-17-2010, 04:38 PM
 
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My family is seeking to move out of New York city and we are considering the Croton area. We are also considering the Armonk/Pleasantville/Chappaqua area. The essentials are as follows - both my wife and I work in Midtown Manhattan and we would like a reasonable commute to Grand Central (e.g., 45 minutes to 55 minutes) and have some land for our 2 year old daughter to play around on. We don't want to feel isolated after having spent the last several years in Manhattan and London (UK). By all appearances, Croton seems to offer what we are looking for including the activities that we crave - outdoors, hiking, biking, etc... Can someone help me confirm that the commute to Midtown each day is doable. Secondly, does anyone have advice for a family that would presumably need a professional nanny or live in help to take care of our daughter during the day hours (i.e., is it reasonable to conclude that in a family where both hubby and wife work, the commute to and from Croton is not, objectively, unreasonable)? Any other information would be appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Yorktown Heights NY
1,316 posts, read 4,564,505 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waltmink1 View Post
My family is seeking to move out of New York city and we are considering the Croton area. We are also considering the Armonk/Pleasantville/Chappaqua area. The essentials are as follows - both my wife and I work in Midtown Manhattan and we would like a reasonable commute to Grand Central (e.g., 45 minutes to 55 minutes) and have some land for our 2 year old daughter to play around on. We don't want to feel isolated after having spent the last several years in Manhattan and London (UK). By all appearances, Croton seems to offer what we are looking for including the activities that we crave - outdoors, hiking, biking, etc... Can someone help me confirm that the commute to Midtown each day is doable. Secondly, does anyone have advice for a family that would presumably need a professional nanny or live in help to take care of our daughter during the day hours (i.e., is it reasonable to conclude that in a family where both hubby and wife work, the commute to and from Croton is not, objectively, unreasonable)? Any other information would be appreciated. Thanks!
Express trains to Grand Central are 43 to 48 minutes. The station is a "hub" and has a lot more trains and more options than most stops. During rush hours there is almost never a long gap between trains. I commute daily from about 10 minutes from the Croton station in Yorktown Heights. The commute is generally quite pleasant--nice drive to the station, comfortable trains, gorgeous view out the window. The worst part for me is getting from Grand Central across town and down to Penn Station where my office is.

For years my wife and I both worked in the city. That was a bit stressful, but doable. Then my wife got a job nearby and that certainly made things easier. We had au pairs (live in) because we wanted to get to know the person taking care of our kid. The au pairs (3 guys) were all awesome and it was a great experience. How "doable" the commute is depends a lot on the job. I tend to work until around 7:00, which makes for a late night but it is still doable for me. But I know people who regularly leave work at 10:00 and I think the commute is really too much for them.

I've written a lot of posts--as have many others--about Croton and the surrounding area. I's a great area with lots to offer.
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Old 03-18-2010, 10:35 AM
 
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From the Pleasantville station the express trains run 46 - 48 minutes, 2-3 times/hour during peak commuting hours but only once per hour at other times. Chappaqua is one stop up but has more frequent express trains and is actually the first stop for some express trains out of GCT, so in some ways it is more convenient than Pleasantville. Armonk doesn't have its own station, so you would have to drive to another town (from Mt Kisco on down to White Plains - depending on where your house is located). It's about 35 minutes from WP to GCT so if you live on that side of Armonk the commute could be pretty decent even if you have to drive 15 minutes to the station.\

Also want to add that both my husband and I commute to midtown, and I agree it can be very stressful especially if you both have long days and non-flexible hours. We are lucky in that we both have enough flexibility to switch off leaving early/staying late/working from home, so that we don't need morning daycare, and our kids are almost always picked up by 4:30 - 5:00 pm (most after-school programs go until 6:00 - 6:30 if you need it though). The tough part about the train commute is that you are a slave to the schedule, and if you miss a train by one minute it can mean getting home (or to work) an hour late.
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