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Old 06-25-2007, 09:11 AM
106 posts, read 396,471 times
Reputation: 59


So I am looking at moving to the quad cities from New England.

Looks like a pretty nice place to live. One thing I was wondering about is can people tell me about the culture? I am coming from a kind of artsy / liberal kind of town. How would you describe the quad cities? I am willing to try new things and don't have to share my politics with all my friends.

Plus everybody tells me there is nothing to do. That has to be a bit of an exaggeration. I live in an area of about 100,000 people and I am never bored. The quad cities have over 350,000. People have to do stuff right?

Sports, arts, night life, outdoor life? I donno. What does Davenport have going for it?

Is Davenport at all similar to Columbus OH? I spent a week there a few years ago and was really impressed.

Thanks for any help!
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:27 AM
3,376 posts, read 12,423,322 times
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I know a lot of people from the quad cities and they all say there is nothing to do there. Very small town feel. Definitely not artsy. Very industrial, with lots of manufacturing plants.

Again, that's just what I always heard, but I knew hundreds of people in college from the quad cities and they all said the same thing, even now as adults.

If you want artsy, move to Iowa City. It is the most liberal and multicultural area in the state, very educated town (where the UI is). I cannot recommend IC enough (very biased, i know)
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Old 06-25-2007, 05:54 PM
Location: Midwest
1,903 posts, read 7,468,102 times
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I returned late yesterday from a weekend trip to Iowa City. I highly recommend it. The adjacent 'suburb' of Coralville has plenty of hotels/motels and a large shopping mall with an ice skating rink attached to the food court. More interestingly, the University of Iowa campus spans the river, with downtown starting at the feet of the main quadrangle of campus (like Ann Arbor, kinda like Madison).

Highly recommended. Washington Street is a decent outdoor shopping arcade with an attached indoor mall, although not as upscale as Charlottesville. Beware that Saturday night in the summer are a little less than family friendly, with every punk in the near radius being drawn to there. I did not see any tornado damage from last year.

I took a quick trip up to Cedar Rapids and drove back to Illinois via Davenport. If one lived in Iowa City, you would be between Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, and Davenport - very ideal.
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Old 06-25-2007, 06:36 PM
54 posts, read 406,270 times
Reputation: 69
Default Lots of Stuff to do

I grew up around the QC and if people can't find things to do they aren't looking. There are all sorts of sports. There is always something going on at the Mark. There are a lot of things going on in the Summer from Art In The Park to things Happening on the river front and Ben Butterworth parkway. We no longer live in Illinois but we lived in Davenport for a time as well as on the Illinois side of the river. There were things going on all the time and actually the QC area is a very Art/Crafty place. Michael Blazer has his studio in the QC and he's nationally famous. There are other good artists and writers there as well.
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Old 06-25-2007, 09:41 PM
Location: Chariton, Iowa
681 posts, read 2,850,396 times
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Allow me to slide in here somewhere between PearlBob and San's opinions.

It's true that the QC is still a very blue collar town, with a lot of manufacturing plants and a big US Army munitions plant. It's certainly much more of a factory town than Columbus, for sure. It also lacks the a lot of the cultural/entertainment amenities of Columbus and other cities.

That said, it isn't the town it used to be. There are more service/white-collar jobs now then in the past, for one. The QC has also worked very hard to rework it's downtown (or is that downtowns?) and develop a cultural life, with several new museums and that goofy skybridge thing. (I've been dying to go see the Figge myself, but havn't been able to make the trip yet...)

I would give serious though to Iowa City as well...
Iowa City is some what smaller (probably around 90k all together, plus students), but has always had the aura of being the "cultural mecca" of Iowa. It sounds like a very good match to the "artsy/liberal" city you hail from. Politically, well....more than one state pundit has called it the "People's Republic of Johnson County".

We have a lively music/theater scene, art museum and incredible college sports. While much of the nightlife during the school year is student orientated (including punks \m/ ), the city really goes out of the way to cater to "townies" as well, especially during the summer months.

(As you can tell, though, I'm also biased! )
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Old 06-26-2007, 07:35 AM
106 posts, read 396,471 times
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Iowa City sounds kind of like where I am from now. I really like my current location. But the only reason we are moving is because my fiancé is going to chiropractic school.

Palmer has three campuses, Davenport IA, Daytona FL, or San Jose CA. Daytona just had too much of a ****** tonk party town feel to it. It’s not somewhere I would actually want to live and work. All the jobs out there are tourism based, and low level.

San Jose looks great, but it is just too hard to get home from there. Plus the cost of living is out of control. I would need to make like 100K to keep up my current standard of living.

So Davenport looks like it might be a nice middle ground. A few more jobs, very low cost of living, it’s actually the closest of all the locations and I keep hearing how nice the people are. But everybody tells me how boring it is, and not that great.

I am just thinking that it can’t be all that bad. I have only been to one Midwest town (Columbus) but I was impressed. The people there were not behind the times at all. In fact I would say they were a little trendier than my NE home.

I’m hoping the QC has a similar feel to it. All the towns like the in Napoleon Dynamite must be in the middle of nowhere and the people in the cities must have their act together.

I don’t need, or even want, a bunch of stuck up 5 star restaurants, and every night club to have a dress codes. But I would like somewhere to go get a nice meal out, and enjoy the local night life a little.

There must be tons of out doors things to do. I don’t hunt, but I like hiking, swimming, camping, rafting, ect. I know this is a stupid question, but are there mountains in Iowa? Rivers? Lakes?

I used to wrestle and I know Iowa is a mecca. Maybe I could get involved in an intramural league or something. And Miletich fighting systems started in the QC. Maybe I could go check that out.
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Old 06-26-2007, 08:50 AM
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You could easily live in IC and commute to Davenport for work/school. It's only an hour away. Especially if your wife would only be in class a few days a week.

No mountains in Iowa. Only rolling hills. Plenty of lakes and rivers though.

I'm happy to hear the QC is doing more culturally. I know the many times I have driven through (years ago) it always seemed...well like an industrial town. If you are going to be visiting, DEFINITELY make the drive over to IC. Of course it is student oriented downtown on campus, but there are plenty of non-students who eat/shop there too, and the area itself is very huge (Coralville is miles from campus and seems to be where most families are now moving...it's just a twin city of IC, but newer).
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Old 06-26-2007, 08:53 AM
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And also, may I add, I remember being in school in IC...every weekend when we'd go out, we'd meet people who were students at the chiro school in Davenport. Apparently the a ton of the young people who lived in Dport for school would drive to IC on the weekends to go out. If that tells you anything.

But don't think that IC is aimed at young kids only....it's really a big area and there are a ton of places for older non-students to go and things to do. Tons of festivals, art centers, museums, sports, etc.
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Old 06-30-2007, 04:17 AM
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Hi Oceanfit185,

I just moved to the Quad Cities a few months ago from Salt Lake City so my husband could attend Palmer. Everyone we have met has been very friendly. There aren’t mountains in the area (coming from Utah I do miss them), but there are lots of rivers. My husband has been fishing quite a few times since we moved here.

I noticed at the Palmer gym that they have an Outdoor Club. The students also seem really friendly and helpful with finding things to do. There seems to be quite a few festivals here as well.

My husband and I have been trying out the local restaurants and have found a few really good places that we can afford on a student’s budget. I don’t really know much about the night life though.

On a side note, and maybe its just my situation, it seems to be a little harder to find jobs here and the jobs that are available pay less than we’re used to. That being said, the cost of living is lower. And it could just be me
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Old 06-30-2007, 04:37 PM
Location: Iowa City/Dubuque, IA
100 posts, read 503,900 times
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I would NOT say that Davenport or the Quad Cities are very comparable to Columbus. There are many nice areas of the QC, but by the same token, a lot of it seems pretty trashy. To understand the Quad Cities, you have to realize that it was the birthplace of the John Deere Corporation (Moline), and as such, has relied heavily on manufacturing (even today). It is also home to the Rock Island Arsenal, which for a long time, gave the area a significant military prescence. Its an industrial town.

I would not recommend against moving there, but I would use some caution. You are from a smaller area, so I hope you realize that the Quad Cities have a fair amount of crime among them. Rock Island and Davenport seem especially bad. I would recommend Bettendorf as the cleanest, newest, most family-friendly of the 4. Don't be afraid to explore other areas of Iowa, though. Iowa City is very nice, but so is Dubuque, so keep all of your options open. Good luck.
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