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Old 06-25-2016, 09:15 PM
 
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Let me start by saying thanks to all for so helpful and forthcoming with info about the town most of you seem to enjoy so much. Extra points to Kathryn and Mark Sr. for each being a wealth of information.

My wife and I are considering moving our family to Tyler from Bakersfield, CA. We are planning a scouting trip for around February without the kids to check it out over a long weekend. So, if you were to recommend a conservatively budgeted weekend trip to Tyler, what would the itinerary look like? Where to stay, eat, see, housing to check out, attractions to take in? What should we do to get a good sample of Tyler?

Can't wait to read the responses. Thanks for the help.
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Old 06-26-2016, 07:34 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
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Yay! Sounds like fun - as long as you keep in mind that Tyler is not really an "entertainment" or "tourist" destination - LOL.

Tyler is a very pleasant small city though so I do hope you get a good feel for it over a long weekend!

OK let me think - what would I do on a long weekend in Tyler? I will pull from my daughter's recent experience, I guess. She just moved back to the states from Guam and flew into Dallas and headed straight for Tyler for about five days. Here's what she gravitated to first:

1. She wanted to drive around and just look at the various neighborhoods (Tyler has some beautiful neighborhoods and a wide range of housing options). She especially enjoyed driving around the Azalea District (brick streets, lots of historic housing). Another neighborhood she drove through a lot is the Green Acres area. Both of these neighborhoods (out of probably hundreds of various neighborhoods) are full of housing in just about every price point.

2. She loved going to Fresh, which is Tyler's version of Whole Foods. It's owned by Brookshires, which is a very successful grocery store chain based in Tyler. You really should check it out if you're considering moving here.

3. You may want to consider staying at a hotel that is close to Rose Rudman walking trails - this is a series of trails that is in the center of Tyler but feels very secluded - very wooded and beautiful, even in February. The trails are a total of about 7 miles long, maybe more.

4. Speaking of neighborhoods and property, if you want a good buyer's realtor, I can suggest several to you. I loved the realtor we worked with when we bought our house a couple of years ago. She's won lots of awards over the past several years too. She's terrific. She might be able to spend a couple of hours with you looking at some properties.

5. Tyler is a town that loves to eat out. There are so many great restaurants here - many which are locally owned. Tell me the types of food you like and I can recommend some really good ones to you! One thing for sure - you've gotta try some Tex Mex and some BBQ while you're here!

6. If you like shopping, check out Cumberland Park:
Village At Cumberland Park - Tyler, Texas - Home Page - 700,000 sf of shopping -
But there are also lots of locally owned shops as well.

Mainly what I would do is drive around and scope out various areas. Check out the Azalea District and Bergfeld Park. Rose Rudman trails, Tyler State Park (north of town), Lake Tyler and Lake Palestine, and I'd drive out to Bullard and Flint and Chandler and Lindale and Chapel Hill as well (those are bedroom communities to the south, west, north and east of Tyler). Take a drive out to Edom (artsy enclave) and Ben Wheeler (interesting little town that's been revitalized) and stop at the Shed for lunch (think country cooking and delicious pies) and Blue Moon Nursery to peruse plants and check out their class schedule.

If you like ginormous flea markets, you may want to time your trip to check out Canton Trade Days:
First Monday Trade Days 2016 & 2017 calendar of dates of upcoming flea market weekends in Canton, Texas
Canton is always a hoot!

The adorable town of Jefferson is not too far from Tyler and is chock full of antique stores. However, Gladewater is a lot closer if you're into antiques. Gladewater is about fifteen minutes northeast of Tyler.

Here's a good guide to local events and attractions:
Attractions | Welcome to Tyler, Texas
Calendar | Welcome to Tyler, Texas
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Old 06-26-2016, 07:55 AM
 
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Thanks for the reply. We are not concerned with being entertained. The suggestions you made are very on point with objective of our trip. We have read about the area and think it may be a good place to raise our kids. Keep the suggestions coming.
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Old 06-26-2016, 08:02 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian75 View Post
Thanks for the reply. We are not concerned with being entertained. The suggestions you made are very on point with objective of our trip. We have read about the area and think it may be a good place to raise our kids. Keep the suggestions coming.
Are you planning on public or private schools for your kids? And what are their ages? This will make a big difference in which neighborhoods to focus on.

One thing to be sure to do is just drive around outside of Tyler and take in the East Texas scenery. Personally, I think East Texas is beautiful.

I also like that it's close enough but not too close to Dallas and Fort Worth. If you have time to spend one day and one night in Fort Worth, you really ought to do it. Fort Worth and San Antonio are the two most "Texan" cities in Texas in my opinion. "Nice places to visit but I wouldn't want to live there," because I personally am not a fan of the congestion and high cost of living in major metros. But I do like having a major metro area close by,
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Old 06-26-2016, 10:11 AM
 
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We are most likely going to homeschool our 3 and 1 year olds. We think we will probably rent in Tyler and then take day trips to the surrounding small towns and bedroom communities of Tyler until we find where we would like to buy. We would like to have a couple of acres away from town a few miles.
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Old 06-26-2016, 10:18 AM
 
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I think we will definitely check out the DFW also. We are very curious about the culture there. I have lived all over the country, but my wife has not. She really has no idea what the day to life differences are. I have lived in the south for plenty of my life, so I think I have a decent start on what to expect.

What are the people like there? I expect it to be slower and (hopefully) a bit friendlier.
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Old 06-26-2016, 12:27 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
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DFW is worth checking out but my personal opinion is that:

1. The growth rate is phenomenal - with all the dust, traffic, and hectic activity that goes along with it.

2. The cost of living is significantly higher than in Tyler

3. The people aren't as friendly. I mean, it's just not as laid back and the feeling is more one of anonymity there.

To me, having Dallas and Fort Worth nearby is great - but personally I wouldn't want to live in the middle of all that. My GPS can't even keep up with all the changes and growth there!
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Old 06-26-2016, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
59,251 posts, read 47,863,599 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian75 View Post
We are most likely going to homeschool our 3 and 1 year olds. We think we will probably rent in Tyler and then take day trips to the surrounding small towns and bedroom communities of Tyler until we find where we would like to buy. We would like to have a couple of acres away from town a few miles.
Sounds good.

One thing to keep in mind is this - it's not that you won't be able to find a "couple of acres away from town a few miles," - eventually - but be prepared to spend a chunk on it. Seems that's what everyone wants!

My husband and I moved back to the Tyler area a couple of years ago and so we looked at a lot of real estate. We were truly shocked at the price of smallish acreage (3-10 acres). That sort of thing is in very high demand around here.
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Old 06-26-2016, 03:39 PM
 
2,984 posts, read 4,333,095 times
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Kathryn pretty much said it all. I would only add or really subtract. In early February it could be fairly cold and even some wintry precipitation. Last year, nope, we hardly had any "winter" as we call it, lol, no threat, if you call "winter precipitation" a threat. I like a little snow, without the ICE, thank you very much.

But the only greenery will be evergreens, pine tree types, but it will look, rather dead. Not at all like mid-March or at least April. Those later months are when the azalea driving trails (miles long) are in bloom, plus all the dogwoods, tulips and it all "greens up" into late May. Then comes the Texas heat and humidity, that we "endure" for almost four months.

Just to point out, the weather in February, most likely, will not be very inviting, but we could have clear Colorado blue skies and 50 to 70 for highs. Or if a cold front "came thru," 30 - 40 highs for a few days. Just to let you know. Glad you're giving Tyler a visit.

I'm told they're a lot of home school groups that get together for activities, even sports teams, like football, of course, this is Texas after all, lol

Let us know before you come for specific restaurant or food choices. Yes, there really are many. Best to you !

Oh, if you have enough time, check out the Caldwell Zoo, weather permitting, it only takes an hour or two visit. Which is covered in the links Kathryn sent you.
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Old 12-22-2016, 03:55 PM
 
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All of this is wonderful information! My husband and I are thinking about retiring from Marble Falls (northwest of Austin), TX to Tyler or Palestine. How do the cultures compare?

Can you suggest a real estate agent? We are looking for a house about 2,000 sq ft with either a separate workshop for him or at least an acre to build one on.

Debbie
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