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Old 02-15-2014, 08:31 PM
 
15 posts, read 33,446 times
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Hi All

I am considering relocating BACK to the Pacific Northwest and am hoping you guys can help me with a few questions. I previously lived outside Bellingham Washington and relocated 30 miles west of Cody WY 3 years ago. I really miss the Washington/Oregon area and my sons who are there.

While the area I live in is gorgeous I discovered I need to be closer than 30 miles to a grocery store, would like to be somewhere where fresh fruits and vegetables aren't just a memory and would like to have neighbors who are accepting of different views. I would also like to have a Costco and medical care closer than 2.5 hours away.

We are looking for a medium to small sized town that has a few nice restaurants and maybe a little bit of an artsy-fartsy feel. We would like to be able to garden a little and volunteer, maybe take a couple classes whether at a school or something art/woodworking related.

Work doesn't figure into my decision too much. My husband is retired and we have a modest income. I am willing to work anywhere part time.

I spent this weekend in Ashland Oregon and it felt like home. For someone like me who has been moving around a lot looking for the 'perfect place' that means a lot. I'm looking for somewhere to put down roots and get involved in my community. I don't want to change it, just want to contribute.

I've lived where there is a lot of rain in the winter, that didn't bother me. I don't like lots of cold, which we have in Wapiti WY.

Can someone tell me if it's possible to garden in Astoria... I haven't gardened much in the past but my husband and I would like to try it. Also, do they have a farmers market? What's it like? And, can I have a wood burning fireplace.

Thanks in advance for any answers/suggestions/advice you can give me.
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Old 02-23-2014, 02:57 PM
 
15 posts, read 33,446 times
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I'm (hopefully) bumping this to the top. Can anyone tell me anything about Astoria? I was their recently and was very taken by the town.
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Old 02-23-2014, 03:50 PM
 
Location: Mountains of Oregon
16,986 posts, read 20,701,618 times
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Howdy hippy.dippy.vegan

I haven't been to Astoria but it looks like they have farmers markets...

Astoria Sunday Market | Astoria, OR

https://www.google.com/#q=Farmers+Ma...Astoria+Oregon

I wood think you are allowed to have woodburners. Contact the local "Chamber of Commerce" probably best.

Make sure you get an Oregon Approved wood burner.

I'm sure you will get some posts from folks who have been there/lived there.

Best of Luck finding your place......
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Old 02-24-2014, 10:19 AM
 
4,060 posts, read 5,213,011 times
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Astoria does have a farmer's market, and I've even been there to confirm it's real. Much of the produce comes from the valley. It's of a pretty good size, and a decent mix of produce, prepared foods, and crafts. There is a local co-op, but even the local Safeway actually has a pretty good selection of organic produce.

Astoria was also the filming site for a variety of 80s films - Goonies, Short Circuit, Kindergarten Cop, etc. and you can visit some of those sites for kicks. And of course there's the barking of the sea lions to keep you company.

Astoria has a lot of art galleries, and many of them happily make space for local artists of varying degrees of skill and they seem to be welcoming to new people. It also has good dining options, from the Rogue Brewery to lots of seafood (of course), and even Bosnian and respectable Thai.

As for gardening, the weather can be a bit harsh, particularly the winds. Most of the people I know there who do garden aren't planting tomatoes but often have luxuriant gardens of perennials, wildflowers, etc. But the OSU extension does certify master gardeners around the state, and Clatsop County hosts a branch Clatsop County Master Gardeners

So you can get a lot of advice on what does grow well in that climate and how to grow it.

I like Astoria quite a bit. It is a tad isolated (2-2.5 hrs from Portland), though compared to WY that's probably nothing. If it weren't for work I'd definitely consider moving there.
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Old 02-25-2014, 02:24 PM
 
15 posts, read 33,446 times
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Thank you bler144 and Hawk J for you answers. I think I'll try to visit again in mid-March and see what I can find out about the area.
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Old 02-25-2014, 02:43 PM
 
Location: Dallas, Oregon & Sunsites Arizona
8,000 posts, read 16,284,535 times
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Don't expect to grow your own. You can get the same fruits and veggies all the other farmers markets and chain stores get, but not local. Astoria is conservative despite efforts by progressive socialist late comer's to change it. The progressive socialist don't carry a lot of popularity in Astoria. Costco and medical will still be a good drive away in Portland. Astoria isn't Ashland. They are at opposite ends of the state and the rain amounts are much higher in Astoria. Jobs even menial are few and far between.
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Old 02-25-2014, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Just outside of Portland
4,828 posts, read 6,924,587 times
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Warrenton, which is a mile or so away from Astoria, has a Costco, a Fred Meyers, and a Home Depot, and will have, if not already does have, a Walmart, among other stores.

As far as medical, I believe Astoria has a hospital, and both Warrenton and Astoria have urgent care facilities.
Seaside, which is about half an hour south of Warrenton also has a Hospital.

THEY ARE NOWHERE NEAR ON PAR WITH THE HOSPITALS IN PORTLAND, which is about a 90 minute to two hour drive from Astoria (via HWY 30) depending on weather and traffic.

I have no idea about gardening, but Astoria is cool, wet, and windy through much of the year.
My SIL lives in Ilwaco (in WA across the river).
Next time I talk to her I will ask about gardening.
Honestly, I have never seen any large gardens in that area, but then again, when I go there, I don't look for gardens.
They do grow a lot of cranberries on the Long Beach Peninsula just north of Astoria though.
Find out what conditions cranberries thrive in and that might give you some idea of what else may grow there.

Nobody will really care what political leanings you may have.
It's pretty much be a decent neighbor and mind your own business.
The Astoria area has it's roots in fishing and logging, so there definately will be conservative types there.
And redneck types.
LOTS AND LOTS of tourists during the summer, so you'll get all kinds.

Astoria/Warrenton/LBP will have a slight artsy fartsy feel in the summer time, but it's for the tourist dollars, not indicative of those towns populations.

Steve is probably right about long term well paying jobs, but then again, in the summer time you stand a good chance of finding something seasonal because of all the tourists.

Did I mention there are LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS of tourists in the summertime?
If you are a crafty person with some talent, you may be able to make some bucks from them.
A lot of people do just that.

Be warned that weather and ambience wise, Ashland and Astoria are two totally different types of towns.

Last edited by pdxMIKEpdx; 02-25-2014 at 03:57 PM..
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Old 02-25-2014, 04:12 PM
 
4,060 posts, read 5,213,011 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdxMIKEpdx View Post

Astoria/Warrenton/LBP will have a slight artsy fartsy feel in the summer time, but it's for the tourist dollars, not indicative of those towns populations.

Steve is probably right about long term well paying jobs, but then again, in the summer time you stand a good chance of finding something seasonal because of all the tourists.

Did I mention there are LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS of tourists in the summertime?
If you are a crafty person with some talent, you may be able to make some bucks from them.
A lot of people do just that.

Be warned that weather and ambience wise, Ashland and Astoria are two totally different types of towns.
I agree Astoria is far from a hippie liberal art commune, but there's a large enough local basis for someone interested in the arts to have a community to participate in. Some of the local arts and craftspeople rely on the local industry (pilot boats and fishing) for their muse and some just paint seascapes.

So if you're saying it's not a commune, I agree, but there is a real and thriving community of people who participate in the arts for money or for pleasure. So I wouldn't scare someone interested in being part of an art community away. I know people who live there and love it for precisely that reason.

And yes, Ashland and Astoria are two different towns, particularly in terms of climate. Ashland would presumably be ideal for tomato growing (sunny and dry) whereas Astoria it would seem a doomed project unless you were greenhousing or had some other sort of weather barrier.
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Old 02-25-2014, 04:42 PM
 
Location: Dallas, Oregon & Sunsites Arizona
8,000 posts, read 16,284,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdxMIKEpdx View Post
Warrenton, which is a mile or so away from Astoria, ... ...
Warrenton is in Washington and the bridge is more than a mile across. It's actually over 6 miles.
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Old 02-25-2014, 04:53 PM
 
Location: Portland Metro
2,314 posts, read 4,340,350 times
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!!! Geography alert !!! Apparently somebody shifted the state lines.

Warrenton is in Oregon. The bridge across Youngs Bay connecting Astoria to Warrenton is about a mile across.

Facts, my friend. Facts. Maps are online now.
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