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Old 07-08-2009, 09:30 AM
4 posts, read 7,819 times
Reputation: 10


Hello, I am thinking of moving to Knoxville and have a few questions. First, a little background. I am a 40-ish single mother to a ten year old daughter. It will be the two of us, plus my 67 year old mother. I homeschool my child, and I work from home so I don't have to worry about the employment issue. Currently we live in south central KY (in the town I was born and raised), in a very small town where Walmart is the "exciting" part. (ha!) I went to college in Louisville KY and remained there for several years, so I am comfortable with larger towns/traffic and such. I am Christian, but I enjoy a diversity of friends/neighbors. I don't care what someone else believes, I just care about them being friendly. I guess I would say I'm a "live and let live" kind of person.

About time for the questions, huh?

I would like to rent before buying, to be sure that we like the area, and to give us time to pick the right neighborhood before buying. Are rentals very hard to find? I am wanting a 3-4 bedroom, 2 bath, 2 car garage. Does anyone have a ballpark figure for rentals such as that? Can anyone give an idea of what area is a safe area to live? (such as east side, etc.) Are there any areas to steer clear of?

I know there are many homeschool groups there, but I am concerned about other activities for my child. Are there many choices for dance lessons and music lessons? Or any other types of activities for children? I know we'd like to do dance, guitar lessons, maybe swimming lessons, but we're hoping there may be other things as well.

Bookstores? Are there any? Many? And how is the public library? In my lovely little town, we have no bookstore, you are limited to the selection at Walmart (thank goodness for Amazon.com). Our library is pathetic unless you want to read a romance. (no thank you.)

This question might sound strange, but here goes...do people frown upon single mothers? They seem to here. Many, many times when I have talked to people here in my small town, they'll ask what my husband does, and when I say I don't have one, they cut me off cold. This has happened several times over the last ten years, and it just baffles me. Obviously not everyone has acted this way, but it seems like so many have.

Oh...a few more...festivals/events/concerts. Are there things like barbeque festivals, etc? What about concerts? While I'd love something on the Jimmy Buffett scale and scope, I also like small venues like Arlo Guthrie. And are there farmer's markets there, and if so, are they very large? And a question from my mother the seamstress, are there fabric stores?

I do plan to take quite a few trips there prior to the move, but there is such a big difference between living somewhere and visiting. I apologize for the novel-length post, but would appreciate any answers, to any of the above questions. Thank you.
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Old 07-08-2009, 07:09 PM
Location: The Conterminous United States
22,584 posts, read 53,339,115 times
Reputation: 13599
I'm a 47-year-old mother with a nine-year-old. I'm married but it doesn't really matter around here. I work with lots of single moms. No one has ever said that anyone looks strange at them.

It sounds like you come from a much smaller place. Knoxville has all the things you want, and then some.

By the way, I am an avid reader and you will be satisfied! I am always at the library. I got my card the first business day we were here!

I really have to go, so I don't have the time to fill you in on all the things that you listed, so I am going to keep this short.

Knoxville is a city but it feels much more like a large town, to me. People are very friendly and rarely are they judgmental. I'm an atheist and most people just don't care.

I have also considered homeschooling, and yes there are groups.

I really think you will like it here! Sorry that this message is so rushed and disjointed! But welcome to Knoxville and the forum!
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Old 07-08-2009, 09:52 PM
Location: Knoxville
1,155 posts, read 3,332,657 times
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Welcome Noelpopsicle, you will love Knoxville, and we have many great towns in Knoxville, and some of the better schools to choose from. I do not think being a single mother, will be any problem and you would find lots of friendly folks, in several areas. Renting should be fairly easy as so many homes on the market. Rent will be anywhere from 1,000, to up to whatever you would want to spend. All the activiites you mentioned, we have, and you can find much to do. Several Church groups, have great support for home schooling and you can find many to speak with. Good luck, and once you visit more, you can have a better feel about which parts of town, would work best.
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Old 07-09-2009, 05:55 AM
Location: The Conterminous United States
22,584 posts, read 53,339,115 times
Reputation: 13599
Okay, I'll try this again.

Far too many bookstores to name, but includes a fabulous used bookstore called McKay's which seems to always be packed, which is a testament to the avid readers of Knoxville.

Believe it or not, we actually have a farmer's market going almost every day of the week, in several different locations. Although they were slow to take off, the selection in now excellent, including locally raised beef, eggs, etc. We have a food co-op and a couple of organic stores, too.

Lots of churches and many, many, many that would welcome a single mom.

Lot of concerts, small venues, etc.

Oh, and MOST areas of the city and county are safe.

Sounds pretty good, eh?

I know this is still not very specific, but you are just starting your journey, and I hope this gives you a good idea of our happy area.
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Old 07-10-2009, 07:31 AM
4 posts, read 7,819 times
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Thanks everyone, for your answers. That does give me a good idea of what to expect, and it sounds lovely. We're planning a three day trip soon to take our first look around, and I definitely will find McKay's and check it out!

When we first started discussing moving, my first impulse was "move to Florida!" as I am a bit Disney crazy. My little girl and my mother both out-voted me and said "NO, move close to the mountains!" After reading a lot about Florida's expenses, crime and such, I see that my daughter and mother have far more sense than I do.

If anyone is still reading my ramblings, I have another sort of goofy question. Are there places you can buy fresh fish? Where I live in Kentucky we have the Green River Lake, which I suppose is a fisherman's paradise, but you cannot buy fresh fish to eat anywhere. You'd think you'd be able to. Our Kroger never has fresh fish, and I don't know that I would trust it if they did advertise some. I have fond memories of fresh fish that my grandfather had caught that same day, but it's been some time since I enjoyed that. So, are there places to buy it, or is my best bet to befriend a fisherman? Heck, I'll be happy to catch my own if I learn where to go, and stick myself with a hook a few million times.

Sorry, I am rambling...focus! Again, thanks for the answers, I cannot wait to visit your town.
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Old 07-10-2009, 10:00 AM
Location: Powell, TN
451 posts, read 1,178,477 times
Reputation: 185
There are 7 lakes in the Knoxville area. You're in a good area for catching your own. The Market in Maryville sells farmraised and local catch. There are 4 Shrimp Dock locations in East Tennessee which sell fresh catch from the Gulf of Mexico, flown in on ice daily.
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Old 07-10-2009, 10:54 AM
4 posts, read 7,819 times
Reputation: 10
Thank you thank you thank you!!!! I just googled the Shrimp Dock, and WOW I am very impressed! That will perfectly suit my needs! (okay, my wants )

Goodness, it's like everyday I find three more reasons to live in Knoxville.

I'll throw one more question out there....do they do anything "big" for Halloween? (or is Halloween frowned upon?) The reason I am asking is that we might drive down there around that time, and I would like to take my daughter somewhere to celebrate/get candy if there is anything of note around that time.
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Old 07-10-2009, 11:21 AM
Location: Knoxville, TN
2,171 posts, read 7,543,983 times
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The Police Department sponsors Halloween at Safety City, a fun, safe event for kids.
City of Knoxville - Safety City Halloween
There's also Boo at the Zoo. A night of spooky fun at the Knoxville Zoo.
You'll find lots of things for your daughter to do and lots of home-schooling enrichment programs and other programs. UT offers Kids U in the summer. I've been tempted to take a few myself!
Kids U Courses (http://www.outreach.utk.edu/ppd/kidsu2009/courses.html - broken link)
Ijams has lots of programs.
Ijams Nature Center - Welcome to Ijams Nature Center
If you're daughter is interested in working in clay, Mighty Mud offers classes for children in wheel throwing and hand building.
Mighty Mud Kid's Classes
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:02 PM
16,160 posts, read 31,840,506 times
Reputation: 20501
In Maryville Halloween mostly consists of trunk or treat a lot now. Churches organize parking lot trick or treating or some other activity.
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Old 07-10-2009, 08:52 PM
Location: The Conterminous United States
22,584 posts, read 53,339,115 times
Reputation: 13599
I'm originally from New England and I am absurdly picky about my fish. The Shrimp Dock is EXCELLENT. Also, Earth Fare offers excellent wild caught American seafood. I will not eat anything else. Fresh Market has a good selection, too.

Earth Fare Home

The Fresh Market - Experience the Food!
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