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Old 01-20-2013, 08:08 PM
 
13 posts, read 14,026 times
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So here is the deal: I live in a suburban city near the beach in Southeast Virginia. It is boring here, especially being a 25 year old, single, lesbian Jew. I need a change and want to uproot myself to someplace new. I am a teacher. I am interested in moving to a city that would not make me feel so isolated from people that are like me. The problem is I don't want to teach inner city schools, but I do want to live the city life.

What neighborhoods in St. Louis would be good to look at to be able to experience a positive Jewish gay life, but still commute to school districts that are not inner city. Any advice/suggestions??
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Old 01-20-2013, 08:14 PM
 
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Central West End. Its walkable, diverse and has many transplants. I would expect CWE probably has a gay nightlife scene and there are plenty of clubs there. It borders St.Louis County and you could probably drive within 20 minutes to Ladue and Pattonville (both are good school districts) .
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:58 PM
 
Location: St. Louis
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You've come to the right place! STL was recently ranked one the best gay cities in America by the HRC's Municipal Equality Index (one of only 11 cities in the country to score a perfect 100) and was ranked #15 overall by the Advocate. There's also a sizable Jewish population here, mainly centered in the Central West End through Clayton and the mid-St. Louis County area. I would suggest the Central West End, Tower Grove, Soulard, or Downtown if you want a city experience. They're all very walkable, progressive, fun neighborhoods. The City of St. Louis is quite small geographically and is surrounded by suburban St. Louis County, so it shouldn't be more than a 20-30 minute commute to any of the more affluent suburban school districts from the City. Clayton and Ladue are probably the best school districts in the the metro area and both of those would definitely be under 20 minutes from the Central West End.
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:01 AM
 
817 posts, read 1,273,423 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kbook View Post
So here is the deal: I live in a suburban city near the beach in Southeast Virginia. It is boring here, especially being a 25 year old, single, lesbian Jew. I need a change and want to uproot myself to someplace new. I am a teacher. I am interested in moving to a city that would not make me feel so isolated from people that are like me. The problem is I don't want to teach inner city schools, but I do want to live the city life.

What neighborhoods in St. Louis would be good to look at to be able to experience a positive Jewish gay life, but still commute to school districts that are not inner city. Any advice/suggestions??
As other posters have suggested, the Central West End is a great choice. Central Reform Congregation is in the CWE and has a thriving LGBT community component to its congregation: Shalom! | Central Reform Congregation

Another neighborhood possibility is University City which is only 3-4 miles west of the CWE. U City has a significant Jewish population with many congregations, albeit orthodox for the most part. Beautiful brick houses, so many trees and parks. If you have a dog, there's a great dog park University City, MO - Official Website

U City is the home of Washington University and Fontbonne University so overall, the community is quite progressive. University City, MO - Official Website

My wife and I live in U City (we're a lesbian couple) and LOVE the neighborhood we moved to two years ago. We are within walking distance to the Loop Visit The Loop and Clayton Home with its numerous restaurants and yearly huge art fair Cultural Festivals - Home

If we hadn't found the perfect house for us in U City the other neighborhood we were looking at was Tower Grove South Tower Grove South | An active and vibrant neighborhood on St. Louis' near south side . OMG. Gorgeous architecture, great restaurants (Thai, Vietnamese, Lebanese, Ethiopian, etc.) TOWER GROVE PARK!!! Welcome to Tower Grove Park TG Park has many spring and summer festivals through the season. Unfortunately LGBT Pride has been moved this coming summer to downtown from TGP but there's a smaller Pride festival being organized at TGP as well. TOWER GROVE FARMERS MARKET!!!! Tower Grove Farmers' Market

So keep asking questions and we can give you our $.02. St. Louis is very affordable with lots of big city amenities.
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:26 AM
 
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These responses have been helpful, I definitely I appreciate it! Just a couple other logistical/living questions.

What is it like having a car and parking in the city (ie, availability, permit prices, etc.) and what is public transportation like?

Second, what is the weather like (ie how much snow/how cold does it get in the winter, and what weather phenomena are prominent? Being from Hampton Roads in VA, all I really deal with are hurricanes from time to time)

Thanks!
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:44 AM
 
817 posts, read 1,273,423 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kbook View Post
These responses have been helpful, I definitely I appreciate it! Just a couple other logistical/living questions.

What is it like having a car and parking in the city (ie, availability, permit prices, etc.) and what is public transportation like?

Second, what is the weather like (ie how much snow/how cold does it get in the winter, and what weather phenomena are prominent? Being from Hampton Roads in VA, all I really deal with are hurricanes from time to time)

Thanks!
You don't need a parking permit to park on STL city streets. In the neighborhoods there's the typical park on the street thing. A lot of houses have either parking pads or garages behind the houses that face an alley.

Public transportation: we have a tiny little light rail system: MetroLink Stations, St. Louis, MO - Google Maps

You can use the above map to compare where you're looking at places to live in proximity to MetroLink.
There is the typical bus system as well. The light rail unfortunately is not close to Tower Grove South or Shaw neighborhoods. Shaw is just north of Tower Grove Park, another great city neighborhood:
Shaw Neighborhood in St. Louis- Welcome!

Weather: hmmm..... This week it's been pretty cold (low in the low teens, highs in the twenties) but today it's supposed to get up to 40 degrees. We had a beautiful little snow event yesterday, maybe a half inch. It made the cold temperature worth it. But by next Tuesday, the projected high is supposed to be 67!!

Last winter was a bust, so is this season, as in little or no snow. Summers can be brutally hot, IMHO. If you like hot weather, come to Missouri. We do have tornado events here. There are tornado sirens that are tested at 11:00 am on the first Monday of every month in St. Louis City and County.

On that note, if you come here and buy a house, get one with a basement. You will be spending time in that basement during severe thunderstorms when the sirens go off. We have a brick house with a basement that was built in 1929 (solid as a rock) that has survived decades of severe thunderstorms.

St. Louis City and the inner ring suburbs have a lot of brick houses that are solid construction and very charming. STL had a Chicago style fire in the 1800's and building codes were changed to require safer building materials, hence, brick construction predominates.
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:52 AM
 
1,816 posts, read 5,480,761 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kbook View Post
These responses have been helpful, I definitely I appreciate it! Just a couple other logistical/living questions.

What is it like having a car and parking in the city (ie, availability, permit prices, etc.) and what is public transportation like?

Second, what is the weather like (ie how much snow/how cold does it get in the winter, and what weather phenomena are prominent? Being from Hampton Roads in VA, all I really deal with are hurricanes from time to time)

Thanks!
Stl weather is roughly similar to D.C. weather. Others have you covered pretty well with neighborhoods and parking. The Metro public transit, is not as conprehensive as as D.C.'s system but is fine if you live near a stop or park and ride near one.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:50 PM
 
46 posts, read 131,406 times
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Reading your bio, I think the absolute best place for you would be the NYC area. There is a very large gay population AND a very large Jewish population. You can live in the City and do a reverse commute to NJ or LI to teach. NYC has improved so much in the past 20 years, it's hard to understate. COL is high however, but probably worth it.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:02 PM
 
13 posts, read 14,026 times
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Unfortunately, The north is way too cold for my liking;also NY is too big city for what I'm looking for.
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Old 01-24-2013, 09:06 AM
 
1,816 posts, read 5,480,761 times
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Originally Posted by Kbook View Post
Unfortunately, The north is way too cold for my liking;also NY is too big city for what I'm looking for.
NYC weather isn't dramatically different than D.C. area weather. The difference is much more pronounced between St. Louis and the Upper Midwest, i.e. Chicago. And, while definitely, solidly different, it's not like comparing a deep Southern or desert or coastal place to something significantly different. I wouldn't considered Stl weather dramatically different from D.C. nor NYC. Four pretty equal seasons, all can be to the extremes in terms of heat, cold. St. Louis doesn't get the quantity of wind of the upper Midwest nor quantity of snow, making winters much more forgiving but not ideal for someone who prefers sunny and warm all the time. Wind chills were -15 or so two nights ago in Chicago. Bone chilling past few days. If you are seeking significantly warmer or sunnier weather in Stl vs D.C. you will be disappointed. It's pretty similar. Hot humid summers, wet cool Spring, drier fall, some snow depending on the year, but the kind that melts quickly because temps rise above freezing unlike the Upper Midwest where snow can sit there for months because temps don't often rise above freezing in winter.
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