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Old 07-09-2012, 02:22 AM
Location: Netherlands
45 posts, read 204,000 times
Reputation: 22


Hi there,

I'm Michael and I live in the Netherlands and (for shame & unfortunatly) I have never been in the United States. One of my greatest hobbies is writing. Now I have started a new project and my character has to live in the state of New York and somehow I stumbled upon Ossining. Okay, my character lives in Ossining, but now I want to capture the feeling of living there. I would like to know ALL about Ossining. I want to be able to imagine living there and not be far from the truth.

What stores are there? Where do people go when they go out? What kind of town festivals are there? What kind of schools are there? What kind of sports do people play in Ossining? What's the mayor's dog called? Wich street has some lose tiles where I could trip over? What's the weather like generaly? I want to know everything you know and can tell me about Ossining and the feeling of living there. All information you have for me is very much welcome!

Also, I would very much like details (whatever you can tell me about it) on the Sing Sing Correctional Facility.

I thank you in advance.

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Old 07-09-2012, 02:17 PM
Location: Chappaqua
79 posts, read 286,404 times
Reputation: 53
I leave nearby, not in, Ossining, but I will give you my thoughts. I am sure residents will give you a better feel for the sense of the place (and you'll probably want to defer to their comments over mine in the event of any disagreements.)

1. It is on the Hudson River, and has an active boating culture.
2. It has beatiful river views from much or most of downtown.
3. It is extremely hilly, which leads to less walking about than one might expect in such a small and picturesque town.
4. It is a very affluent part of the US (Westchster County, New York State, northern suburbs of New York City).
5. By Westchester County standards, it is considered a bit on the scruffy side (likely on account of the correctional facility).
6. Per 5, it is more economically diverse than most Westchester towns of its size (and is more racially diverse as well, though does not require a very sizeable minority presence.)
7. It was recently voted one of the best places to live in Westchester by a leading local magazine.
8. Among people who speak of the public schools in Westchester, Ossining is not normally mentioned as desirable.
9. However, the high school does extremely well in science-oriented high school competitions.
10. It has a really nice park with lake and animals that I expect you would enjoy visiting (Teatown Lake Reservation: see teatown.org).

Last edited by TAK8; 07-09-2012 at 02:33 PM..
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:44 AM
Location: Netherlands
45 posts, read 204,000 times
Reputation: 22

Thank you for your input!
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:21 PM
796 posts, read 1,707,790 times
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It might be expensive, but who knows; maybe it might be worth it.

Why not pay a visit to Ossining some time and have a chat with the locals?
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:01 PM
Location: Manhattan
19 posts, read 78,099 times
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We are in the process of moving to Ossining...(next week!) and here is why we picked it:

Ossining is only 40 minutes from Grand Central Station, so the commute is tolerable. Also, the views during the train ride are stunning.....the ride goes all along the Hudson River.

Ossining is a nice mix of races and socio-economic backgrounds (although its still very wealthy). Some Westchester towns are very snobbish and materialistic, but due to its heritage, the prison, and its immigrant population, Ossining does not lean toward those values. Ossining has a high Ecuadorian population. I think the high school is roughly 50% Spanish speaking and 50% English speaking. We liked this for our kids. We didn't want them to think the world was all white. We also want them to be bilingual, and the schools there offer that option.

Ossining is fairly big for a town in Westchester with about 24,000 residents.

There are tons of parks in Ossining and the Croton Aquaduct trail runs through it.

Also, Ossining has a non-profit group that is trying to make the town more "green" or environmentally friendly. You can keep chickens in the town of Ossining, but not in the Village of Ossining.

Ossining has a great selection of homes that are on larger lots than lower Westchester homes. You can get an acre of land and a house here for about $550,000.

When we interviewed people in Ossining about living there, they all agreed it was pretty amazing for many reasons....mostly they liked the location, the diversity, the restaurants, and the schools. Those things are important to people in Westchester.

Also, the "ghetto" part of Ossining is situated right next to some of the most amazing, river-view homes in Ossining. So some of the impoverished residents have some of the best views.

As a whole, you should check out the demographics of Westchester. It's an interesting place. For very different reasons. We chose to live in Westchester because of the schools, the safety, and the proximity to NYC. But at the same time, there is a quiet desperation about the place. Hence, many novels written about it.

I have not had the privilege of living in Ossining yet, but I have to say I have been impressed by the friendliness and helpfulness of the people thus far. Some Westchester residents might think it's a pit. And it's not perfect. But it does not possess the elite, SAT-score driven, rabid parenting vibe that some of the other towns do. We hope it's a positive, mellow place to raise children.

Good luck.
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Old 07-10-2012, 10:31 PM
Location: Netherlands
45 posts, read 204,000 times
Reputation: 22
Thanks, this all is very helpfull!

And I'd love to visit Ossining as would I love to explore the entire USA...though my budget at this point is not helping.
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Old 07-11-2012, 01:41 AM
Location: Netherlands
45 posts, read 204,000 times
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Originally Posted by Ma Kettle View Post
Hence, many novels written about it.
Could you or any one else name me some examples?
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Old 07-11-2012, 09:12 PM
Location: Harrison
863 posts, read 2,419,485 times
Reputation: 507
This Is Where I Leave You, by Jonathan Tropper

I just happened to read this book (it is hysterical btw). It is set in a fictitious town in Westchester, but really captures the vibe of the place well. Maybe not Ossining specifically, but you would get a feel for the general area. The author lives in Westchester and teaches writing at a college here.
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Old 07-11-2012, 10:24 PM
Location: Netherlands
45 posts, read 204,000 times
Reputation: 22
Thank you, streetsmart. I'll check it out!
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Old 07-15-2012, 10:14 PM
2 posts, read 19,864 times
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Recent Graduate from Ossining High School -
- Great School , doesn't stand out much to the public eye. But we have a great deal of accomplishments . Have a fantastic science program that is ever expanding. An additional floor is being built in the science wing of OHS. Student body i would say is 65 % white 25%spanish 10% african-american.
- After school everyone goes to the Recreational center to play basketball, play billiards or go swimming. I usually went to the Public library. It has a great view on the third floor over looking the hudson. The library is relatively new (5 years i think). has teen reading room.
-Ossining has Two shopping centers . The ARcadian Shopping center and the Chilmark shopping center (even though it is located in briarcliff by zipcode. i still consider it a part of ossining.)
-Ossining has diverse population of majority white , hispanic and black redidents. Very low asian pop. South ossining i would say is a little rough but it still has it's beauty as it is the oldest part of ossining. South ossining is what we call "ghetto" but not by much . It has main street which holds alot of history along with the old aquaduct trail which slaves used to cross. The stores along highland ave include Lucy's pizza"Lucy's" , china ossining "China" and many others. Ossining high school is located facing overlooking the grandeur of the Hudson. Best thing is Lucy's pizza and china are just right accross!!!

There is alot more i could say about this Town. I really love living here.
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