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Western North Carolina The Mountain Region including Asheville
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Old 01-12-2015, 06:15 AM
 
6 posts, read 11,700 times
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Hey there. Jersey Boy here, 23 years old. Considering a bunch of places to move.
Asheville has the best weather east of the MS. river seemingly and from pictures and google street view it looks beautiful. However Asheville has a rep like Portland or SF (both of which I have been too and wouldn't ever live in) as a very granola, hippie, kind of place, there is an article online describing it as the "city with most dreadlocked, hairy legged women per capita" (not my quote BTW). While this is fine, the "peace bro" drum circle world isn't my scene.. I am sure there are plenty of families and retirees over there that are part of that, but I am young and single and I am wondering if me being a more "mainstream" (by that I mean I am not into the alternative scene, not a vegetarian or environmentalist, not into art, a somewhat practicing Catholic, my politics skew a tad to the right, don't smoke pot, do smoke cigs, work in blue collar professions etc.) would make the odd man out in my demographic. Are the hippie type s just a visible minority found in some areas of the city? (like they are in NYC) or are they the majority of young people? (like in Portland)

Likely would live outside of the city in a place like Black Mountain or Boone, but would be going into Asheville for work and nightlife etc.
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Old 01-12-2015, 06:52 AM
 
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Hey Jersey Boy! I'm originally from Queens, myself. Asheville is a great small city with a real mix of lifestyles. The elements you note are present, but there are many mainstream people as well. Black Mountain, Hendersonville & Waynesville are all nearby and much more "staid" then Asheville. Boone is a 2 hour drive and 2-lane roads. Not suitable for a weekly commute. Buncombe County tends to be more conservative than Asheville but my wife & I, both conservative in some respects, love the arts, theatre and atmosphere in Asheville. People "play" with strangers the same way they do in NYC, and on summer evenings (or fall, winter, spring), the city is crowded at the clubs late at night even on weekdays.

We plan to retire north, due to our families, but if we didn't, Asheville would be at the top of our list.

Pegleg
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Old 01-12-2015, 07:08 AM
 
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Boone is two hours away? I didn't know that it is mentioned online in Relation to Asheville so I assumed it was a suburb.


Buncombe County is the suburbs, yes?
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Old 01-12-2015, 07:39 AM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,581 posts, read 9,344,414 times
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Buncombe County...map has a fine red line outlining BC:
https://goo.gl/maps/wnp2S

Buncombe C ranges from 'downtown Asheville' to areas where few have walked or driven lately, and includes some 'suburbs'.

Wider look:
https://goo.gl/maps/HkMSN

GOOG Maps and GOOG Earth are your friends when one wants a look at an area.

Difficult to describe what one might find in greater Asheville to fit a lifestyle of anyone, as it really varies, and it is difficult to give 'advice' to a poster, esp a young seeker.

However, I don't think that the entire under 30 pop is all trust fund bums, freaks, ne'er do wells or street buskers,

I lived in NJ/NY for decades: think of this area as north western NC, Poconos, upstate NY, with even less people, less traffic, less 'stuff' once one is very far outside of Asheville. Not bad per se, but not Jersey or metro NY by any stretch, even if one squints out of focus...at the same time this area has more things to do, more 'culture' (depending on one's definition), and more cool stuff than most of those areas I ref'd., fwiw.


The critical part to consider for anyone wanting to move to the Asheville area or even western NC, is the lack of well paying jobs and the cost of housing, imo.
GL, mD
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Old 01-13-2015, 08:49 AM
 
16,299 posts, read 35,003,379 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motordavid View Post
Buncombe County...map has a fine red line outlining BC:
https://goo.gl/maps/wnp2S

Buncombe C ranges from 'downtown Asheville' to areas where few have walked or driven lately, and includes some 'suburbs'.

Wider look:
https://goo.gl/maps/HkMSN

GOOG Maps and GOOG Earth are your friends when one wants a look at an area.

Difficult to describe what one might find in greater Asheville to fit a lifestyle of anyone, as it really varies, and it is difficult to give 'advice' to a poster, esp a young seeker.

However, I don't think that the entire under 30 pop is all trust fund bums, freaks, ne'er do wells or street buskers,

I lived in NJ/NY for decades: think of this area as north western NC, Poconos, upstate NY, with even less people, less traffic, less 'stuff' once one is very far outside of Asheville. Not bad per se, but not Jersey or metro NY by any stretch, even if one squints out of focus...at the same time this area has more things to do, more 'culture' (depending on one's definition), and more cool stuff than most of those areas I ref'd., fwiw.


The critical part to consider for anyone wanting to move to the Asheville area or even western NC, is the lack of well paying jobs and the cost of housing, imo.
GL, mD
That's it in a nutshell ^^^^. We didn't live in Asheville, but did have a second home there for a few years for vacations etc. The "crunchy granola hippie etc. vibe is prevalent downtown, West Asheville and to an extent the northern side of Asheville (off Merrimon) is what I found. The east side where we lived was all "regular" folk, as well as the south side. So there is a real mix there. If you hang out downtown a lot you will think the whole town is a mini San Fran. But get outside downtown and it changes fast.

We like Weaverville and Black Mountain a lot, and if we were ever to get a place again would look in those areas. Real estate is expensive, and jobs are scarce.
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
10,601 posts, read 21,147,640 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjts9599 View Post
Boone is two hours away? I didn't know that it is mentioned online in Relation to Asheville so I assumed it was a suburb.
Which just proves that maybe you haven't studied quite enough about the area--there is more to research than Google Street View.

Quote:
Buncombe County is the suburbs, yes?
Asheville (city) is IN Buncombe county (county). Suburbs defines parts that are still Asheville, but not urban neighborhoods. And yes, there are towns around Asheville, some of which are in Buncombe county, some which are not.

If you're thinking of moving there, the best thing to do to answer your questions is to plan a trip to visit, and see for yourself. Asheville has its own "flavor" and is hard to describe in black and white terms. But it's true that those who are looking for a Portland/SFO "vibe" love Asheville, so it may not be at the top of your list if you are specifically trying to AVOID such. There are plenty of places in Appalachia with similar weather, if that's the primary reason you chose Asheville.
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Old 01-13-2015, 12:33 PM
 
2,421 posts, read 3,144,374 times
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Who is moving in are retirees and the counter culture. Who is moving out are the young people who want a career after college. May be a generalization, but there are no high tech industries or banking centers moving in.
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Old 01-20-2015, 11:09 AM
 
1,537 posts, read 1,618,744 times
Reputation: 1413
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjts9599 View Post
However Asheville has a rep like Portland or SF (both of which I have been too and wouldn't ever live in) as a very granola, hippie, kind of place, there is an article online describing it as the "city with most dreadlocked, hairy legged women per capita" (not my quote BTW). While this is fine, the "peace bro" drum circle world isn't my scene..
In the city the downtown area is definitely like that. Worse in some respects because there are also enviro-hipsters (i.e. if you're not into tree hugging type stuff they look down on you). Also, whenever I wear Portland anything to the city (I lived in Portland for a while) people always think it's the coolest/want to buy my shirt and so forth. Don't know what you'd call them, Portland groupies maybe?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjts9599 View Post
I am wondering if me being a more "mainstream" (by that I mean I am not into the alternative scene, not a vegetarian or environmentalist, not into art, a somewhat practicing Catholic, my politics skew a tad to the right, don't smoke pot, do smoke cigs, work in blue collar professions etc.) would make the odd man out in my demographic.
Most of the little towns around Asheville lean a little to a lot to the right. However, if you want small city over small town life check out Greenville/Spartanburg, SC. Maybe Myrtle Beach if you're missing the beach lifestyle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjts9599 View Post
Are the hippie types just a visible minority found in some areas of the city? (like they are in NYC) or are they the majority of young people? (like in Portland)
It's a very weird mix of ultra conservative and those hippie types. A lot of retired folks too. Less so if you go outside of downtown proper.

As others have said the cost of living is a little on the high side for what the jobs pay and what you get. Still likely to be lower than Jersey though. NC also has weird taxes that change rates on food, eating in restaurants, clothing, and non-prescription drugs. Expect to do a few double takes.
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Old 01-30-2015, 11:32 AM
 
45 posts, read 72,649 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlhm5 View Post
Who is moving in are retirees and the counter culture. Who is moving out are the young people who want a career after college. May be a generalization, but there are no high tech industries or banking centers moving in.

Not entirely true. Asheville ranks second on a recent study of innovative businesses. Young people, who have new ideas, are coming here to create new businesses. There's an advisory group, out of UNC-Asheville, I believe, of retired executives who offer free services on setting up businesses and how to create a business.
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