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View Poll Results: Move a family of four to Bethel, AK
Stay put! 27 44.26%
take a chance! 34 55.74%
Voters: 61. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-01-2007, 10:34 PM
4 posts, read 35,612 times
Reputation: 14


We are facing a potential relocation to Bethel, AK, to work at a healthcare organization there. We have three young children so I am doing lots of research. So far I have found out that the pollution is outrageously bad because of some foul mining plant up north, that milk is $8 a gallon, gas is $5/gal, caucasians are minority and are treated as outsiders, water is freighted in and water bills are around $300 per month, heat is about the same, the scenery is not great as you think of "Alaska" (it's tundra) and, this kills me - there are 133 registered sex offenders in their zip code, a huge amount as far as I'm concerned with a population of only about 5,000.

Is this for real? I know every state has it's problems but this sure doesn't appear to be a place to bring a family?

Any insight? Is my reserach skewed?
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Old 02-01-2007, 11:05 PM
4 posts, read 35,612 times
Reputation: 14
My poll should be for a family of "five", not "four" - unless our 5yr-old decides she doesn't want to move......
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Old 02-02-2007, 06:56 AM
4 posts, read 35,612 times
Reputation: 14
Default My assumptions

Okay you Alaska lovers, no on has replied. Silence often speaks louder than words.

I can make two assumptions: Bethel is the armpit of Alaska and it really is that bad but it hurts too much to talk about, or, you've only heard secondhand so you don't want to say because you'll be shunned from this group, but you're definitely not going to visit any time.
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Old 02-02-2007, 08:04 AM
1 posts, read 10,812 times
Reputation: 13
I too am considering a relocation to Bethel with my young family- so far the reports aren't so good, even though I like the idea of living near the wilderness.
I've never been out to Bethel, but have spent a couple years in other parts of Alaska, and spoken with one individual who insists Bethel is indeed the armpit of the state. That's just one individual, of course, but so far I haven't found anyone who strongly disagrees. Are you currently in the lower 48?
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Old 02-02-2007, 09:19 AM
3,774 posts, read 11,234,375 times
Reputation: 1862
Most of the sex offenders (if not all) are Yupi'k who have molested younger cousins and siblings. Not uncommon. That or statutory rape (an 18 yr old with someone under 16).

Bethel is not exactly pretty. The prices are about right. It is the hub for transit for most of the Y-K delta region. When you type in the zip for Bethel, there about 20 other villages with the same zip code. Each of them ranging from 100-500 people.

I can't think of any real cause for air pollution, and at present, there are only a couple of smaller mines in the area to cause any ground water pollution. Fresh water on the other hand is expensive in a lot of the places in the bush.

Bethel is a lot better than most of the places Outside, and other threads within this forum have addressed the shortfalls and advantages of living in Bethel.

Sorry I never saw your original thread.
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Old 02-02-2007, 09:47 AM
Location: Bethel, AK
27 posts, read 142,006 times
Reputation: 38
I just recently moved to Bethel with my daughter who is 5 years old. What you are hearing about the town is wrong. I work for the Health and Social Services department and can tell you the real deal.

1. Almost all rapes that happen are family related and those happen in the villages.

2. Bethel is comprised of one town and several surrounding villages. In order to get to the villages, you have to drive across the river in the winter or boat in the summer.

3. The air quality is fine, I have asthma and have not had a problem since I have been here.

4. It is tundra but on clear days you can see the mountains off in the distance.

5. It is very expensive unless you come from LA or the Northeast..Then You will not complain about the cost. Almost everyone buys online or has things shipped in. You only buy emergency stuff from the 2 stores here.

The best thing about Bethel are the people here, native, white, black whatever, they are extremily nice and help out without even knowing you. As soon as we arrived in town We were offered food, and made to feel at home.

Dont let people scare you with these scare tactics. Most of them havent even been here. It is true you either love it or hate it when you get here, but that is because of if your used to living bush life versus city life. If you like the city, dont come it is not here. If you like a warm friendly atmosphere where you will have lots of outside activities and family things to do...YOu will come to the right place.

If you would like futher info, feel free to ask if I dont know, I will find out for you..
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Old 02-02-2007, 11:01 PM
Location: Naptowne, Alaska
15,603 posts, read 39,850,690 times
Reputation: 14891
Thanks Takoda! First hand info is priceless...
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Old 02-03-2007, 02:36 PM
3,774 posts, read 11,234,375 times
Reputation: 1862
what I meant to say was that when you type in the zip on a sex offender site, there are about 20 other villages that come up under the Bethel zip as well, but aren't delineated as such. Your average sex offender - one preying on many different kids from outside a family group - wouldn't last too long in Bush Alaska. There may be a couple out there, but unless the law catches up to them first, death by Alaska might occur. There's tooo many accidents waiting to happen.
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Old 02-05-2007, 09:06 PM
Location: Alaska
16 posts, read 72,013 times
Reputation: 19
I work for Coastal Village Region Fund which is comprised of 20 Y-K (Yukon-Kuskokwim) communities. I find the Yupi'k to be some of the friendliest natives in the state. I used to work for a Native Corporation that was mainly Aleut and there is a difference. The Yupi'k are more traditional in family beliefs, language and culture. Most Yupi'ks I know are fluent in their native tongue. They tend to wear thier hearts on thier sleeves. All that being said, do I want to live in Bethel? Nope...
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Old 02-13-2007, 05:16 PM
7 posts, read 42,445 times
Reputation: 10
Hi Takoda, Here I'm. I'm new to the whole deal of chating, but my son is moving to Bethel, AK. and I'm concerned about what items will anybody going to that so far place really need to take with him (we live in San antonio, TX). He and his girlfriend and his inlaws are preparing what they think they will need when thay are in Bethel, but you know. Thigs that are absolutly necesary that you may say darn!! I should have bring this item/items with me. What those items do you think they should take with them. I have being reading all the information you guy are giving about your views of Alaska, thank you for that info. But what else ???
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