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Old 04-25-2012, 12:41 PM
 
2 posts, read 16,417 times
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Hello,

My husband is in the early stages of considering jobs in State College. He loved the town as a student, but we're not sure what it will be like for a young family (kids 7 and 8). We have visited several times, but it's hard to imagine actually living there. I would love some feedback! Specifically:

- Do most residents work for the university or are they connected in some way?
- Does the town have a friendly feel, overall?
- Does the university affect daily life of residents? (Would it feel much different from a town without a large university?)
- Would you consider it fairly easy to meet people and make friends? (haven't had problems with this in our other 2 towns)
- Are parents actively involved in the elementary schools?


Any other helpful feedback would be great.

Thank you!
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Old 04-25-2012, 12:44 PM
 
126 posts, read 391,475 times
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Most people, about 80% are connected to the university in some way, shape or form. If they're not connected to the university, they work for the defense contractors that occupy the surrounding area. The town is certainly friendly to a point. It's very cliquey and transient at the same time. You are reminded it's a university town based on traffic and such during summers and breaks. Prices and such are also reflective of a university area. Schools are good for the most part as well. Just beware of property and income taxes that are high for the central PA area.
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Old 04-25-2012, 02:06 PM
 
3,605 posts, read 5,484,969 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Callie82 View Post
Hello,

My husband is in the early stages of considering jobs in State College. He loved the town as a student, but we're not sure what it will be like for a young family (kids 7 and 8). We have visited several times, but it's hard to imagine actually living there. I would love some feedback! Specifically:

- Do most residents work for the university or are they connected in some way?
- Does the town have a friendly feel, overall?
- Does the university affect daily life of residents? (Would it feel much different from a town without a large university?)
- Would you consider it fairly easy to meet people and make friends? (haven't had problems with this in our other 2 towns)
- Are parents actively involved in the elementary schools?


Any other helpful feedback would be great.

Thank you!
Most people recommend the State College area for young families, due to excellent schools and plenty of outdoor activities.

You would always be aware of the presence of the university and the students, but I think it would be a good place to raise a family. Actually, I've never met a young family that hates the area. The ones I know seem to love it.

I don't find the town particularly friendly, but I'm from the west, where people are much more friendly than the east. I attribute it to east coast mindset, where people seem to be interested primarily in their own family or close friends, without much interest in being friendly to random people. But as far as the east coast goes, State College seems to me to be as friendly as anywhere else.
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Old 04-25-2012, 09:31 PM
 
190 posts, read 654,177 times
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Welcome (potentially) to Happy Valley! It is such a wonderful place to raise your family. Most residents are connected to the university. Most work there, and if they don't they are still huge Penn State "people"(they went there, their kid goes there, etc..). Additionally, the university supports the community in many ways, such as concerts, plays, and family activities. Compared to other cities, I think that State College is very friendly. Especially with children, you will find that you fit in very quickly. Because new people are always moving in due to many residents being professors, everyone is welcoming to newcomers. The university affects the town dramatically. If Penn State wasn't here, then State College as it is today would basically not be here. Therefore, it enjoys many of the amenities that other towns this size without a large University (like a suburb of a major city) wouldn't really have unless they left their town and went into the city. Of course, this also means more traffic and people during football games and graduation weekends, but also more relaxed summers and breaks. In my experience, parents are very involved in the elementary schools. The PTAs seem well run and have enough volunteers. Of course, I am not sure about all of them, only the ones I have experienced. Best of all with living in State College, it is extremely safe! The crime rate is extremely low. State College sounds great for you, and I think you will find that you would fit in well with many of the other young families in the area. My advice is to take some time to look at homes on the internet, and next time you visit, drive through these neighborhoods/areas. You can't really get a grasp of what it is like driving down College Ave. or Atherton. But you can when you drive through a neighborhood like Park Forest or College Heights. Additionally, if you want smaller-town/smaller-school district living within 15-20 mins. of State College with lower home prices and property taxes, look at Bellefonte (Bellefonte school district) or Centre Hall (Penns Valley school district).
Some helpful links:
State College - Philipsburg : Macaroni Kid (WONDERFUL guide to kid's events)
State College, PA Real Estate & Homes for Sale (easy to search for homes in the whole school district)
State College Area School District / Home Page (schools website)
State College CENTRAL
State College PA Events: Penn State Community Calendar (community calender)
HappyValley.com - State College and Penn State Football, Hotels and Lodging, Restaurants, Bars, Attractions, Sports and Entertainment
Good luck with your new journey!!

Last edited by Lion11; 04-25-2012 at 09:39 PM..
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Old 04-27-2012, 02:23 PM
 
2 posts, read 16,417 times
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Thank you all for the helpful feedback! If the rest of the population of SC is as helpful and friendly as the city-data posters, I think we'll be in good shape!

We've lived in NY and MA so we're used to high taxes. I'm assuming PA would be lower?
I will spend some time on realtor.com looking at different houses/neighborhoods. From what I've seen so far, I think the College Heights neighborhood or Holmes-Foster (is that right?) would be good fits. Also, does anyone know much about Boalsburg? I see it is still in the SC school district and having more land for a garden, etc. might be nice.

I have to say, I'm very excited at the prospect of great restaurant options! We ate at the Green Bowl and Cozy Thai Bistro the last time we were there and loved them both. Another benefit to our possible move.

Thanks again everyone!
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Old 04-27-2012, 04:19 PM
 
190 posts, read 654,177 times
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College Heights and Holmes-Foster are both great neighborhoods! Children from College Heights attend Radio Park Elem, and Holmes-Foster kids go to Corl Street. These neighborhoods are great because they are within walking distance to both campus and downtown but they have a really great family-friendly, neighborhood feel. Boalsburg is a tiny village(birthplace of Memorial Day!!) with some cute historic homes, churches, and shops. There are also newer, bigger houses on large lots on the outskirts of it. All of it is still in the SCASD, with kids from Boalsburg going to Mt. Nittany Elem. Some other places that are still in SC schools are Lemont, Stormstown, Pine Grove Mills, and some areas of Port Matilda, as well as PA Furnace and some Warriors Mark addresses. However, some of those areas can be 20 minutes from downtown. The school district really covers a lot of area!

Glad you enjoy our restaurant options! Those are two of my favorite too
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:59 AM
 
1 posts, read 8,122 times
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Hi Callie,
I'm currently not a resident but I'm moving my family up to State College in November... We bought a house in the Holmes-Foster district that's been rented out while we sold our home down here in Atlanta. Now that the house is sold we can finally make our move. We usually stay in SC on our way to and from visiting our families, and currently have a few friend who live in town. We looked in College Heights, the Highlands and Holmes Foster district. We liked Holmes-Foster because it was far away enough from the stadium that game days would have less impact on our lives and we bought right by the park which was further from a lot of the student housing. We were told that 70% of the kids in our neighborhood walk to elementary school with their parents every day (Corl Street elementary which I was told was the best even though they are all fantastic) We have a 4 year old so he will be starting kindergarten there. We also liked that we could walk to almost anything we would need, and downtown was just a 8 minute walk. I just thought I would add my opinion because we went through the same process you are going through... Good luck with your potential move!
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Old 12-06-2013, 08:41 AM
 
260 posts, read 253,012 times
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The Highlands seem better located to the downtown. How is that elementary school compared to Holmes-Foster? I do worry that the Highlands is a little close to Frat Row. I have three boys, ages 6, 4, and a new-born. Thinking about relocating to State College, and I would want an easy walking distance to downtown, so I'm considering either Holmes-Foster or the Highlands.
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Old 12-09-2013, 04:51 PM
 
190 posts, read 654,177 times
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Children in The Highlands attend Easterly Parkway, again a great elementary school. All the elementary schools in State College are good; I wouldn't say that I could pick out one that isn't as good as the others.
This map will show you were each school's area is: District Maps / School Enrollment Areas
As far as being close to frat row, it really all depends on where the house is. Overall, the neighborhood is safe, but if you are near frat houses you could be dealing with noise on Thursday-Saturday nights. However, this isn't the whole neighborhood. It would just be a matter of seeing where the house is for yourself.
Good Luck!
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Old 12-09-2013, 04:54 PM
 
Location: Pa
42,760 posts, read 48,676,511 times
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I would live in towns outside of state college.
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