Relocating to the Shenandoah Valley


Dec 2nd, 2005, 01:38 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
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sorry for delay in replying. as for the schools - montevideo middle school feeds spotswood high school. that is where both my brother and i went and we loved it. both graduated top of class, attended strong private colleges and have CPAs. so... your children will be fine as those schools. would be interested in what area you will be living, may have some contacts for you. i cannot remember the MS that feeds Turner Ashby but in my opionion they are equal to the others. hope that helps. one little bit of info, the area is growing tremendously, i think you'll find a wide range of very warm friendly locals and some folks from different areas to offer some variety. i was just there at thanksgiving and got a little homesick..
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Dec 7th, 2005, 05:12 PM
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To Gearclan and Saraho:

How were your trips to Virginia??
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Dec 7th, 2005, 08:58 PM
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Ronkala, we just got home from a week's trip looking at different towns in the Shenadoah Valley. We had a wonderful time. My husband who has been luke-warm about the whole idea is now pretty enthusiastic about moving there when he retires.

We spent three days in Winchester. It is definitely at the top of our list. It is a charming town- especially the old down town with its walking mall. There is lots to do there. We felt like we were "on vacation" there and that it would take a long time to see everything, plus it would be a great place for our grandchildren to visit us. The people that we met there, including one on this forum, were delightful and very helpful.

We also went to Woodstock and liked it very much, too. It is a small town full of old houses and churches- very attractive in a setting beside the Blue Ridge. We will probably prefer a place that is larger with more choice of activities to retire in, although we met many retirees there who seemed to like it very much. We were surprised that the house prices seem to be not much cheaper than in Winchester. I guess that housing has gone up a lot everywhere within 80 miles of DC.

We went to Culpeper, too. It is a nice town considerably larger than Woodstock. It is definitely a possibility, although not as charming as Winchester. It has an attractive downtown, a choice of restaurants and shops and lots of older houses and very nice new developments outside of town. Our son and his family are moving here next year, so we are thinking more about it even though we really like Winchester better.

We also like Warrenton which is more comparable to Winchester in size. But Warrenton is probably out of our price range.

We are thinking about renting a place in Winchester for several weeks to see how we would like living there. We have two children in the DC area, so it might feel a little far for easy visiting.
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Dec 9th, 2005, 04:58 AM
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So glad your trip went so well! It was a pleasure meeting you and your charming husband.

Feel free to ask more questions at any time. If only housing prices hadn't gone up so much in the past few years.....

Good luck and have fun with the planning.
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Dec 9th, 2005, 06:39 AM
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Glad that you had a good trip. It's hard making that where to retire decision. We had considered Orange at one time and Culpeper, but once we got away from having horses we opted for the mountains. Then the question was where between Winchester and Roanoke until we decided on Woodstock.

When do you plan on making the move?
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Dec 15th, 2005, 04:40 AM
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Ronkala, the mountains close to Woodstock are lovely, even in December. We drove down a side road towards the Blue Ridge and really enjoyed the views. I am sure we would like it even better in the spring and fall when the leaves are on the trees. We also liked the friendly little library there. We are still considering Woodstock as a possibility although we were surprised that the house prices seemed to be similar to those in Winchester. Also people we talked to expressed concern about drug and gang problems, but I expect that is a problem in most places.

We are leaning towards Winchester though, because we have lived in a small town for the past twelve years and feel ready to have the greater choice of activities and stores that would be available in a larger town.

We will probably be ready to move in about eight months. Hopefully, we will spend a couple of weeks in Virginia this March to make a final decision, Then we will put our house on the market, and if it sells quickly, I will probably find a rental place in Virginia and move there to house hunt( and visit grandchildren) while my husband finishes some job assignments.
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Dec 15th, 2005, 04:52 AM
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Hi. Your info. is really helpful, as we are looking to do the same, albeit not so soon. We will be visiting in April to check things out.

Wondering if you saw Charlottesville and what you thought of it, and did you see Fredericksburg, Staunton or Lexington?
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Dec 15th, 2005, 07:35 AM
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The county is doing fairly well with the drug situation, and I wouldn't call it a drug problem. We don't have any a major crime problems either. There is a drug problem in Winchester according to court cases listed in the local paper.

The library in town is maintained by an endowment left by one of the founders. They do a good job bringing in the latest best sellers.

Home prices have gone up recently because of new construction in the Winchester and Strasburg area by the northern Virginia builders. (Fairfax & Loudon Counties)

Did you get to see the town park where the basketball and tennis courts and pool are located? There is another small park on Main St. where small concerts are sometimes held.

Were you by chance driving through the streets of Woodstock with another woman in a gray car?

If you are in the Baton Rouge area, and still there in mid September, stop in at the USS Trathen reunion being held in the Sheraton.

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Dec 15th, 2005, 07:43 AM
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Fredericksburg is a nice city, but the surrounding counties are in a building boom and traffic will be horrendous.

We considered Staunton and Lexington, but selected Woodstock for its smalltown charm, being fairly close to Dulles airport, and being able to go to Washington D.C. in an hour and a half.
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