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Old 07-19-2008, 06:04 AM
 
1,566 posts, read 4,423,546 times
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Can anyone provide info on Petaluma? I'm considering moving there.
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Old 07-19-2008, 10:02 AM
 
Location: California, USA
21 posts, read 89,800 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nmguy View Post
Can anyone provide info on Petaluma? I'm considering moving there.
After 13 years in Petaluma/Rohnert Park, here's my perspective.

Pros:
Mild temperatures if you don't like extreme inland heat
good proximity and easy access to San Francisco
Good downtown
excellent public school system and also plenty of alternative school choices
Good pay scale if planning to work close to town
Easy access to beautiful coastline and outdoor recreation
Very country/yuppy feel if you like that
No urban vibe at all, very 'away from it all' feel
Very visible police, low crime, very safe community

Cons:
Mild temperatures bordering on cold if you like inland heat
Terrible commuting traffic if planning to work out of town in Marin County or San Francisco
Practically no diversity. The town is at least 90% Caucasian with some Hispanic, but really no other racial groups
Not very good shopping, will have to frequent Santa Rosa/Rohnert Park for good shopping
Very country/yuppy feel if you don't like that
No urban vibe whatsoever if you do like that
Prejudiced police force. I'm white and even I know this to be true.
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Old 07-19-2008, 12:34 PM
 
Location: San Diego
110 posts, read 376,946 times
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One time I was walking the main in street in downtown Petaluma and I went into this antique store. There was a nice little lady behind the counter selling knitted puppy dogs and stuff like that. Then I saw these stairs leading down to the basement level and when I looked down there, there was a giant Nazi flag on the wall and Nazi collectibles and Nazi memorabilia everywhere. They had real Nazi daggers, flags, helmets, etc. It was weird.
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Old 07-22-2008, 06:10 PM
 
53 posts, read 216,747 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Palmer Eldritch View Post
One time I was walking the main in street in downtown Petaluma and I went into this antique store. There was a nice little lady behind the counter selling knitted puppy dogs and stuff like that. Then I saw these stairs leading down to the basement level and when I looked down there, there was a giant Nazi flag on the wall and Nazi collectibles and Nazi memorabilia everywhere. They had real Nazi daggers, flags, helmets, etc. It was weird.
That was just the militaria store. I live in PA and visited there. It has Japanese, Italian, you name it. Frankly one of the best stores in the nation for that.

John
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:39 PM
 
2,779 posts, read 7,521,394 times
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Don't forget the Meth problem.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:41 PM
 
2,779 posts, read 7,521,394 times
Reputation: 745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Palmer Eldritch View Post
One time I was walking the main in street in downtown Petaluma and I went into this antique store. There was a nice little lady behind the counter selling knitted puppy dogs and stuff like that. Then I saw these stairs leading down to the basement level and when I looked down there, there was a giant Nazi flag on the wall and Nazi collectibles and Nazi memorabilia everywhere. They had real Nazi daggers, flags, helmets, etc. It was weird.

When I looked for a home there I was very excited until I spent a couple of days looking all over town and did notice everyone was white. Petaluma gives me the creeps. And as posted by others here, the traffic is a nightmare if you are trying to get anywhere on 101. I'd look further south in Marin.
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Old 07-24-2008, 08:08 AM
 
Location: California, USA
21 posts, read 89,800 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by norcalmom101 View Post
Don't forget the Meth problem.
It's true. People sort of paint Sonoma County as countrified-yuppy or something like that. It's only become 'yuppy' over the past 10 or 15 years since Marin and SF people started moving there for affordable housing. Petaluma has always had a strong police force (though racist), so compared to other places, it has a low crime rate. That, combined with the high cost of housing, ensures that Petaluma attracts 'the right people'. It's always been an agricultural area (still is), but it was very 'down home', not at all what it is today. Many other parts of the county still has a (I hate this term) 'white trash' culture with some hippy elements, and drugs have always been plentiful around the county.

Sonoma County's proximity to Mendocino and Lake counties ensures that drugs are always around. Santa Rosa has a fairly large and active gang culture and drug dealers a plenty. I worked for Sonoma County in a job that tried to tackle this problem, so I've seen it get bigger over the years. In fact, I left Sonoma County as my children started to get older because of the drug problems in Petaluma. There are loads of rich, bored teens there who have parents that commute long hours. I still think the school system academically is very good in Petaluma, but there is no diversity. We moved to the East Bay a few years ago, and while most of my relatives couldn't understand our leaving Petaluma, I'm so glad that we did. While I do like to visit Sonoma County and appreciate things there, I don't think it's the best place to live.

Also, the huge shift towards the wine industry in Sonoma County is fairly recent as well. There were always vineyards in the northern and eastern parts of the county, but nothing like it is now. I have to laugh when someone says how yuppy Cloverdale, Windsor, and Healdsburg are. Anyone who remembers what those towns were like will understand the humor in that.

Last edited by jtorres; 07-24-2008 at 08:29 AM..
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Old 08-19-2013, 09:51 PM
 
6 posts, read 13,014 times
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This thread is interesting. My husband and I have been looking to purchase a home in Petaluma and have noticed the real estate people seem really toxic and enmeshed. We realize that real estate professionals are probably not the best representatives of any place. But in Petaluma from appraisers to loan agents to real estate people they all know each other and really seem to have a dishonest creepy thing going on. Someones "cousin" does your homes inspection and wow it is a "GREAT HOUSE IN PERFECT CONDITION" someone elses "cousin" does the appraisal and it comes in exactly at the amount of your offer.... stuff like that. We also saw a house that had "White Power" and the nazi swastika on the side of the back yard kids tree house. I kid you not!

Just the experience of looking for a house alone and meeting the creepy players in real estate has been enough to make us second guess living there. We also have noticed the drug use- we were at a kids park with our 5 year old daughter and the smell of pot was wafting over us all and all the kids playing. Right across the street people on their porch were obviously "tweaking" out and yelling and running into the road.

Also have noticed it seems small in this gossipy way- where you go into a store and you feel like they might be whispering about you. That might have been paranoia from all the pot fumes! but felt that way in a couple of places.

Also we saw the NAZI store too that someone posted about above. It was just way way too much Nazi memorabilia to not be a fan of the Nazi's. It was seriously scary and inappropriate.
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Old 08-19-2013, 11:29 PM
 
143 posts, read 296,161 times
Reputation: 157
Not that I am I fan of this show, but several years ago NBC ran one if their "To Catch A Predator" episodes in Petuloma. I'm sure it was all intrapment, but a ton of men were arrested.
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Old 08-20-2013, 08:26 AM
 
104 posts, read 190,297 times
Reputation: 79
Interesting how people are trashing Petaluma for being all-white. I can imagine the outcries of racism if you plugged in a different race. Anyway, all-white to me is a "pro", not a "con".
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