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Old 08-11-2016, 11:45 AM
 
5 posts, read 19,640 times
Reputation: 15

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We are a military family of 4 with 2 teens and currently live in the state of WA (Puget Sound area).
My husband is creeping up on retirement and we are considering Idaho Falls area (Ammon). One of my top concerns is how are the people there towards diversity? Even though I am European and considered white...I am olive complexion and my husband is half white and half Hispanic...so as a family we "look" more Hispanic. Are there issues there with racism and bigotry?

How are the high schools there? Is there good music programs? Are there any private high schools? How are they?

I see that it has a large Mormon population. We are not Mormon. Will this be an issue as far as integrating with neighbors or the kids in school?

We are more conservative and definitely 2ND amendment supporters. How is the area with this?

Now Climate. We have been in WA for sometime now. So for us we get lots of rain and realistically we get 5 to 6 months where it is suitable to do outdoors stuff. So for us we are used to spending lots of time indoors from Oct- April. Would you say the area gets 4 seasons? What are the worst months? How bad does the snow get?

Gardening. Is it a good area to grow food? Do they have a major drought issue?

Hope my questions aren't too many 😊
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Old 08-11-2016, 12:25 PM
 
434 posts, read 336,037 times
Reputation: 174
Years ago I read that Idaho has the 5th most Hispanics per capita behind the obvious Cali, AZ, TX, and Fla. There are few African-Americans. How you respond to Mormons is entirely up to you. Some people are driven away by it, some others join them, and the rest just don't care that much.

Sometimes when it snows, a cold snap immediately follows and ice stays on the roads for days or weeks. The arterial roads are cleared off sufficiently. In my opinion that is the worst part of winter. If the cold doesn't bother you, there are plenty of recreational opportunities to take in the winter.

There are private schools but there isn't enough students at any to designate a separate school for high school or elementry.
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Old 08-11-2016, 07:57 PM
 
Location: Ammon
151 posts, read 126,756 times
Reputation: 131
I am curious as to what made you identify Ammon as your likely choice of neighborhood in the Idaho Falls area? Just FYI, Ammon has the highest concentration of Mormon families in the region. My wife and I bought one of the first houses built in a new subdivision in Ammon in 2007, and now that it has filled in, we're one of maybe six households in the whole subdivision that are not LDS.

Ethnic diversity isn't a major issue overall (in the Idaho Falls general area), since the largest employer is the INL, and they recruit from all over the world. I have Cuban friends, Indian friends, Swiss friends, etc., and there is more diversity all the time in the general population, though the majority are still white, republican, and conservative. If you settle in Ammon, you may see less diversity than in some other areas of town.

2nd amendment supporters fit right in in Idaho. Statistics I've seen are that there are more guns than people in this state by a factor of at least three.

Many people here have gardens and grow food. The climate is such that you can't get starts in the ground before Memorial day without risk of losing them to frost, and tomatoes don't produce much before mid-august, then by mid-October, frost again threatens any remaining garden plants. At my house, we get a good harvest of tomatoes, bell peppers, rhubarb, strawberries, and even some egg plant every year.

Good luck in your decision making, and re-location.
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:42 AM
 
5 posts, read 19,640 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ret.InAmmon View Post
I am curious as to what made you identify Ammon as your likely choice of neighborhood in the Idaho Falls area? Just FYI, Ammon has the highest concentration of Mormon families in the region. My wife and I bought one of the first houses built in a new subdivision in Ammon in 2007, and now that it has filled in, we're one of maybe six households in the whole subdivision that are not LDS.

Ethnic diversity isn't a major issue overall (in the Idaho Falls general area), since the largest employer is the INL, and they recruit from all over the world. I have Cuban friends, Indian friends, Swiss friends, etc., and there is more diversity all the time in the general population, though the majority are still white, republican, and conservative. If you settle in Ammon, you may see less diversity than in some other areas of town.

2nd amendment supporters fit right in in Idaho. Statistics I've seen are that there are more guns than people in this state by a factor of at least three.

Many people here have gardens and grow food. The climate is such that you can't get starts in the ground before Memorial day without risk of losing them to frost, and tomatoes don't produce much before mid-august, then by mid-October, frost again threatens any remaining garden plants. At my house, we get a good harvest of tomatoes, bell peppers, rhubarb, strawberries, and even some egg plant every year.

Good luck in your decision making, and re-location.

We are considering the area because of a prospective job opportunity. I focused on Ammon because of proximity to IF and also because the school ranking on the real estate website. I tend to do a lot of research on data but often times find that getting advice from folks who actually live there is so much more helpful 😊. But I am definitely open to suggestions of neighborhoods or towns that aren't too far from IF.
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Old 08-12-2016, 05:47 PM
 
8,440 posts, read 12,240,670 times
Reputation: 6280
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ret.InAmmon View Post
I am curious as to what made you identify Ammon as your likely choice of neighborhood in the Idaho Falls area? Just FYI, Ammon has the highest concentration of Mormon families in the region. My wife and I bought one of the first houses built in a new subdivision in Ammon in 2007, and now that it has filled in, we're one of maybe six households in the whole subdivision that are not LDS.

Ethnic diversity isn't a major issue overall (in the Idaho Falls general area), since the largest employer is the INL, and they recruit from all over the world. I have Cuban friends, Indian friends, Swiss friends, etc., and there is more diversity all the time in the general population, though the majority are still white, republican, and conservative. If you settle in Ammon, you may see less diversity than in some other areas of town.

2nd amendment supporters fit right in in Idaho. Statistics I've seen are that there are more guns than people in this state by a factor of at least three.

Many people here have gardens and grow food. The climate is such that you can't get starts in the ground before Memorial day without risk of losing them to frost, and tomatoes don't produce much before mid-august, then by mid-October, frost again threatens any remaining garden plants. At my house, we get a good harvest of tomatoes, bell peppers, rhubarb, strawberries, and even some egg plant every year.

Good luck in your decision making, and re-location.
Ret.inAmmon,

Your answer is excellent, IMO!

Ammon is so hit and miss, there can be areas of less LDS members, but nothing is consistent in Ammon about who one's neighbor's will be. Your own subdivision is a great example.

MSR
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Old 08-12-2016, 05:51 PM
 
Location: Old Mother Idaho
27,030 posts, read 18,289,861 times
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Ammon and Idaho Falls have merged over the years, only divided by a canal. Each still has a separate city council, but Ammon schools are in the Bonneville County school district- #93, while Idaho Falls' schools are all within it's own district, inside the city limits-#91.

The county has grown larger than the city of I.F., so the county schools are very overcrowded now in the upper grades. A bunch of new elementary schools were quickly built about 20 years ago, but the Jr. High and High School went neglected in funding for too long. By the time additional schools were finally built, both were over-capacity as soon as they were completed.

There was a prolonged bond fight over building another high school; the bond was repeatedly defeated until just last in 2015, and another new high school won't be finished until 2017 at the very soonest. (I haven't paid attention to the issue for quite a while, so it could be even later than 2017).

I.F. chose to remodel and expand existing elementaries at the same time, as it had already undergone major school expansion earlier. In general, this is the way it usually happens. Idaho FAlls tends to pass school bonds in a timely fashion, but out in the county, there's always a fight over any new school bonds.
This is partly due to how spread out the county elementaries are. Some are in Ammon, others in Iona, Ucon, Lincoln, Taylor, and almost all have some bussing involved. Before the districts were consolidated into 93, each small town had its own high school and Jr. High, often combined into one building.

You won't have any problems looking Hispanic at all here.

Other things to consider;
While the home prices in the county, including Ammon, are lower, the utilities are higher. Idaho Falls produces its own electricity and has the lowest rates in the state. The county is on Idaho Power, which is more expensive.

Idaho Falls has it's own city-owned garbage and sanitary department, but garbage collection in the county is done by a privately-owned service.

Same with water. I.F. has it's own wells and Water Dept., but the county is on either private wells or a privately-owned water company.

Sewer is the same. The county's sewer charges are higher, as a new main line was just completed that connects to a new purification plant built on the southern edge of Bonneville county. The plant is also used by part of Bingham county, and a bond was passed for this just a few years ago.

Winter streets in the county subdivisions aren't plowed by the county. The county plows the main roads, and that's it. I don't know the situation in Ammon, but in the subdivisions that lie outside of Ammon, plowing is done by private services, if at all.

Idaho Falls' streets are plowed by the city by city-owned equipment and city crews. The system used was developed over much experimentation, as it's a major issue every winter. Currently, all the arterial streets are plowed after the first big snowstorm, so everyone can get to work without fighting the snow, and then the neighborhoods are plowed, first the sub-artierials, and then all the connecting streets. The streets are cleared no longer than a week at most after a major snowfall, but when there are a series of big snow storms that come in a string, sometimes those take more time.

All this is paid by city taxes, but overall, the total utilities costs are much lower in Idaho Falls. A big part of this is due to our power generation, which goes into the great power grid, and pays back more than it cost to build. These payments are applied to our other city services, so our taxes go a long way in town.

Other advantages to living in Idaho Falls is the closer proximity to all our fine parks, zoo, 4-season swimming pool, shopping districts ( got lotsa shopping here), the river walkway, and other attractions. Our housing additions all have a nearby park, and the older half of the city is quite compact. Biking lanes are currently under expansion and plans for greater accessibility without causing bike riders to face car traffic. In time, a pedestrian or bike rider will have traffic-safe lanes to anywhere in town.

Out in the county, none of this exists as yet.
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Old 08-12-2016, 06:08 PM
 
8,440 posts, read 12,240,670 times
Reputation: 6280
Quote:
Originally Posted by milwife99 View Post
We are considering the area because of a prospective job opportunity. I focused on Ammon because of proximity to IF and also because the school ranking on the real estate website. I tend to do a lot of research on data but often times find that getting advice from folks who actually live there is so much more helpful ��. But I am definitely open to suggestions of neighborhoods or towns that aren't too far from IF.
Milwife,

I think you'll do far better READING threads here and asking specific questions after you read 5-6 posts on this page and the next one that already address your questions. In Ammon, that is Bonneville School District #93. There is an entire thread for D #93 here including links to websites.

After a person in the Northeastern U.S. asked about schools, I looked at the local school ratings and laughed!!!! One I consider very good had a grade much lower than I would expect. I read the reviews. A bunch of 11-13 y.o. girls had written them 8-9 yrs. ago Another was equally ridiculous!! I wouldn't trust those sites for anything.

I think you are far better off reading directly about the schools from their websites.

It appears you don't want to live in Idaho Falls, which is fine. I'd only look at Idaho Falls or some County locations. But that is just me. However, for anyone here to suggest any other locations, it would help if we knew where your potential job offer is (city). You don't have to name the company, but it makes a difference if we recommend other areas depending on your overall commute time etc.

Ret.InAmmon gave you great info.

District. #91 is Idaho Falls with a Magnet School the existing high schools are going to follow in curriculum. District # 93 just started construction of the district's third high school.

DanQ is someone you may want to connect with. You'll see his posts in the District #93 thread. Retired Navy, as are many here since this was a Navy facility at INL and many have returned to live here. Post your questions to get a larger response, but I'd also suggest you contact DanQ.

BTW, Idaho Falls has private schools including one private high school, parochial, charter schools, Internet programmed schools and all the choices people have in other states. Theotherdude may have forgotten which private school expanded to high school, IDK.

Good luck in your search

MSR
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Old 08-12-2016, 06:13 PM
 
8,440 posts, read 12,240,670 times
Reputation: 6280
Quote:
Originally Posted by banjomike View Post
Ammon and Idaho Falls have merged over the years, only divided by a canal. Each still has a separate city council, but Ammon schools are in the Bonneville County school district- #93, while Idaho Falls' schools are all within it's own district, inside the city limits-#91.

The county has grown larger than the city of I.F., so the county schools are very overcrowded now in the upper grades. A bunch of new elementary schools were quickly built about 20 years ago, but the Jr. High and High School went neglected in funding for too long. By the time additional schools were finally built, both were over-capacity as soon as they were completed.

There was a prolonged bond fight over building another high school; the bond was repeatedly defeated until just last in 2015, and another new high school won't be finished until 2017 at the very soonest. (I haven't paid attention to the issue for quite a while, so it could be even later than 2017).

I.F. chose to remodel and expand existing elementaries at the same time, as it had already undergone major school expansion earlier. In general, this is the way it usually happens. Idaho FAlls tends to pass school bonds in a timely fashion, but out in the county, there's always a fight over any new school bonds.
This is partly due to how spread out the county elementaries are. Some are in Ammon, others in Iona, Ucon, Lincoln, Taylor, and almost all have some bussing involved. Before the districts were consolidated into 93, each small town had its own high school and Jr. High, often combined into one building.

You won't have any problems looking Hispanic at all here.

Other things to consider;
While the home prices in the county, including Ammon, are lower, the utilities are higher. Idaho Falls produces its own electricity and has the lowest rates in the state. The county is on Idaho Power, which is more expensive.

Idaho Falls has it's own city-owned garbage and sanitary department, but garbage collection in the county is done by a privately-owned service.

Same with water. I.F. has it's own wells and Water Dept., but the county is on either private wells or a privately-owned water company.

Sewer is the same. The county's sewer charges are higher, as a new main line was just completed that connects to a new purification plant built on the southern edge of Bonneville county. The plant is also used by part of Bingham county, and a bond was passed for this just a few years ago.

Winter streets in the county subdivisions aren't plowed by the county. The county plows the main roads, and that's it. I don't know the situation in Ammon, but in the subdivisions that lie outside of Ammon, plowing is done by private services, if at all.

Idaho Falls' streets are plowed by the city by city-owned equipment and city crews. The system used was developed over much experimentation, as it's a major issue every winter. Currently, all the arterial streets are plowed after the first big snowstorm, so everyone can get to work without fighting the snow, and then the neighborhoods are plowed, first the sub-artierials, and then all the connecting streets. The streets are cleared no longer than a week at most after a major snowfall, but when there are a series of big snow storms that come in a string, sometimes those take more time.

All this is paid by city taxes, but overall, the total utilities costs are much lower in Idaho Falls. A big part of this is due to our power generation, which goes into the great power grid, and pays back more than it cost to build. These payments are applied to our other city services, so our taxes go a long way in town.

Other advantages to living in Idaho Falls is the closer proximity to all our fine parks, zoo, 4-season swimming pool, shopping districts ( got lotsa shopping here), the river walkway, and other attractions. Our housing additions all have a nearby park, and the older half of the city is quite compact. Biking lanes are currently under expansion and plans for greater accessibility without causing bike riders to face car traffic. In time, a pedestrian or bike rider will have traffic-safe lanes to anywhere in town.

Out in the county, none of this exists as yet.
But Ammon has a Splash pool, Mike!!! Where are your priorities LOL
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:36 AM
 
5 posts, read 19,640 times
Reputation: 15
Wow. This is all great info! I have used City-data forums prior to us moving to other places we have lived and I must say this is the first time I have got so much prompt and very informative feedback. Thank you all. I really do appreciate the time taken to answer my questions and also adding in super helpful info ��. Leaves me with a good feeling about folks in the area.
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Old 08-14-2016, 02:11 PM
 
8,440 posts, read 12,240,670 times
Reputation: 6280
Quote:
Originally Posted by milwife99 View Post
Wow. This is all great info! I have used City-data forums prior to us moving to other places we have lived and I must say this is the first time I have got so much prompt and very informative feedback. Thank you all. I really do appreciate the time taken to answer my questions and also adding in super helpful info ��. Leaves me with a good feeling about folks in the area.
You're welcome for anything I've added. Because we do try to address posts of others, the odds are high we've answered the same questions in the past 6-12 months for others. That is how come we encourage others to search existing threads.

I hope you sent DanQ. a private message. He may have moved from Bremerton as well. He relocated from WA to here. His prior Navy experience, travel around the world and relocation here with teens allow him to share some information many of us don't know.

Post general questions here or on other forums. Yes, ID tends to have friendly people who help if they can (We also expect new residents to adopt that one quality, but otherwise be yourselves while respecting and enjoying the differences of others). BTW, I posted the Census data in a thread. I encourage you to look for Bonneville County. I think it was something like 14% Hispanic. I can't remember bi-racial family info. But you can find it in the census data.

Happy Reading
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