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What's the nicest community in the USA?
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amother
OP


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 12:49 pm
DH and I both grew up OOT and currently live in a large "in town" community. We've been here nearly 20 years! At this point we are tentatively exploring moving out. (We've thought about it before but decided to stay because of family nearby, but now it's up for consideration again.)

Our hometowns are not options at this point.

Our jobs can be transferred (I work remotely, his can potentially be moved, though staying in the NY/NJ area would be easier, but we can make it work).

We can afford to live in an expensive community, BH.

Our kids range from baby to teen. The teen would also do well staying in the NY/NJ area, but it is negotiable. Younger kids are girls so we need a great girls' school, JPF/BY type. We want a warm, friendly, low-pressure, nonjudgmental community without the in-town "shtick." We're just regular normal people.

We've been to Houston and liked it, except for the summer weather. Not crazy about Florida (Orlando or Miami). We like Baltimore but it is not an option for us. Need to stay in the US (so no Toronto or Montreal, or Israel, halevai - we would love to make aliyah but it is not practical at this juncture of our lives, so please don't suggest it).

What's your favorite OOT community and why?

Thank you!
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mha3484




 
 
    
 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 12:50 pm
Im super happy in Chicago.

People are very friendly.

I love the schools.

Its a good middle ground not too big but not too small.

Its just the right level of yeshivish for my family.

My kids who struggle get a lot of help in school without me shlepping them around.

Lots of greenery. There are like 5 parks in a 2 mile radius.
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amother
OP


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:06 pm
Thanks! I forgot about Chicago Very Happy somehow I always pictured it as a big urban city. What’s the housing like? I should mention that we value privacy and would love a decent backyard as well.
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effess




 
 
    
 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:08 pm
Suburban Detroit is great, like west Bloomfield.
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mha3484




 
 
    
 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:10 pm
Housing is a big range. West Rogers Park which is the main neighborhood, is on the edge of the city bordering the suburbs so its kind of semi urban. Mainly houses, town houses a few big condo buildings and the rentals are like 2/3 floor buildings. You can really have a city feel in some parts and a few blocks north, forget your in Chicago.

You can look on redfin for 60645. There is also a suburb called Lincolnwood that could be interesting to you. Its getting more popular. With the JPF/left wing yeshivish crowd.
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amother
Steelblue


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:12 pm
Rochester NY

Literally everything you described:
Not far from metro NYC
Beautiful place to raise a family- nice large and affordable houses with beautiful yards in a suburban setting
Warm, welcoming and super friendly people
JPF BY community that's welcoming to all types (MO contingent and Sephardic contingent in the community too)
Zero pressure

The OU does a community fair every year, it's coming up in March
It's a great starting point for anyone looking at OOT
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amother
DarkMagenta


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:40 pm
I live OOT (not in the US) and we're happy. I always thought what could be wrong about moving OOT and recently listened to a podcast (Rabbi Gewirtzman?) where he mentioned things to take into consideration when moving OOT and it really made a lot of sense. (I've added some of my own) Most likely you will have to compromise on the level of education. If you have an children with special needs and need services this will be a very big challenge. Your teens will most likely find it challenging. Moving from a "fast paced" society to a "chilled" environment is not suitable for everyone. Most OOT communities don't have bussing and life with carpools is very different. Many don't have the selection of takeout, restaurants, Judaica, clothing...that you're accustomed to.
You really need to do a lot of research before making such a move. Definitely go spend a week or so in any community you're considering before moving.
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amother
Almond


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:50 pm
Born and bred in Chicago and still living here.

The community has really grown in the past 5-10 years but you still have that OOT feel. Everyone is really friendly, there are lots of kosher options (and more opening in the near future), so many different types of shuls, beautiful nature- lots of greenery, we have our own lake! (I do not recommend swimming in it, but really nice to walk near it).

Housing- the market currently ranges around $300-$600k in the frum areas. Unless you live in an apartment, most people have a spacious backyard. One of my favorite sights is walking around on a summer Shabbos afternoon, or even just a regular weekday, and seeing families taking walks together or kids riding their bikes up and down the block. It really feels like you're in a Jewish neighborhood.

Can't speak for the school situation since I'm not in that parsha yet, and things have probably changed since my childhood.
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mha3484




 
 
    
 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 1:53 pm
amother DarkMagenta wrote:
I live OOT (not in the US) and we're happy. I always though what could be wrong about moving OOT and recently listened to a podcast (Rabbi Gewirtzman?) where he mentioned things to take into consideration when moving OOT and it really made a lot of sense. (I've added some of my own) Most likely you will have to compromise on the level of education. If you have an children with special needs and need services this will be a very big challenge. Your teens will most likely find it challenging. Moving from a "fast paced" society to a "chilled" environment is not suitable for everyone. Most OOT communities don't have bussing and life with carpools is very different. Many don't have the selection of takeout, restaurants, Judaica, clothing...that you're accustomed to.
You really need to do a lot of research before making such a move. Definitely go spend a week or so in any community you're considering before moving.


I think is true in what you call a red state like Ohio or Florida.

I am in a blue state and we have bussing and more resources for special ed.
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amother
OP


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 3:47 pm
amother DarkMagenta wrote:
I live OOT (not in the US) and we're happy. I always though what could be wrong about moving OOT and recently listened to a podcast (Rabbi Gewirtzman?) where he mentioned things to take into consideration when moving OOT and it really made a lot of sense. (I've added some of my own) Most likely you will have to compromise on the level of education. If you have an children with special needs and need services this will be a very big challenge. Your teens will most likely find it challenging. Moving from a "fast paced" society to a "chilled" environment is not suitable for everyone. Most OOT communities don't have bussing and life with carpools is very different. Many don't have the selection of takeout, restaurants, Judaica, clothing...that you're accustomed to.
You really need to do a lot of research before making such a move. Definitely go spend a week or so in any community you're considering before moving.

Thank you for pointing that out! I grew up OOT so I am well aware of the downsides and compromises. Granted, I haven't been a parent under those circumstances and I'm sure it will be an adjustment, but I know what I'm in for.

My teen is actually likely to have the easiest adjustment, it's my almost-teen that I'm more concerned about.
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amother
Linen


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 3:49 pm
I don't know what you mean by nice, but most of the time when I meet people from Baltimore in particular I'm struck by how nice they are.
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amother
OP


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 3:55 pm
amother Linen wrote:
I don't know what you mean by nice, but most of the time when I meet people from Baltimore in particular I'm struck by how nice they are.

I don’t want to get into the whole in town vs OOT discussion because that will go downhill fast LOL but yes, generally the people from OOT don’t have that hard edge like in towners often do. As an OOT kid who went to NY camps I keenly felt the difference, and even now I gravitate naturally to OOTers. I want that for my kids. I agree, Baltimore people are generally nice, and I’ve noticed the same with Passaic kids and several other communities.

Thanks all for the suggestions so far, I’d love to hear more!
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amother
NeonGreen


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 3:58 pm
I have only been to Atlanta twice but both times I was struck by how amazingly nice everyone was

Also Baltimore
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amother
OP


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 4:28 pm
amother NeonGreen wrote:
I have only been to Atlanta twice but both times I was struck by how amazingly nice everyone was

Also Baltimore

Thanks. Isn’t Atlanta very small? I think we need a more mid size community.
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amother
Purple


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 5:36 pm
Pine lake park lol and it’s right near lakewood
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amother
Junglegreen


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 5:39 pm
Edison?
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tichellady




 
 
    
 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 5:49 pm
I would look into Denver, Las Vegas, Atlanta and skokie
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amother
Cerise


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 5:53 pm
Why are you looking to move after 20 years?
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amother
OP


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 5:54 pm
amother Purple wrote:
Pine lake park lol and it’s right near lakewood

Yeah, so Manchester is really Lakewood LOL just like Tom’s River and Jackson. Don’t try to convince me otherwise Wink

Edison is an interesting idea. It seems like it checks a lot of our boxes. Any idea what areas to look at to get an idea of housing?
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amother
Yarrow


 

Post Thu, Jan 04 2024, 5:55 pm
You mentioned Passaic. What about Passaic?
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