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We may be relocating to Kansas - help!

  • Hi Ladies,

    My husband recently found out that he may be transferred to Overland Park, Kansas in the next few months!

    We are very excited to be trying something new (we have lived in Orlando for 12 years), but don't quite know what to expect! I have done some research and it definitely seems like a very family friendly/community-friendly type of place with good schools etc. We have 4 kids so that is very important to us!

    I guess my main fear is that the few people I have told all say "Kansas...nothing happens there!"

    So...I want to know from the experts -- whats it really like

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Linda on 29th April 2008
  • I <3 Kansas City. Overland Park is a great place to bring up kids. The schools are fantastic, it's a very up and coming area, and it's near very nice shopping. We live in a different part of the city, but I enjoy that part too. I know everyone thinks that nothing happens in Kansas, but I wouldn't say that's true at all. We have lots of cool cultural centers around, and there are tons of things to do with the whole family. Kansas City is pretty spread out though, so it does take a while to get places...if you're traveling across town. Hope that helps. Feel free to ask more questions.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by mamajama on 29th April 2008
  • Thank-you mamajama -- I knew there was more to Kansas than most people think

    I was wondering what kind of weather to expect -- are the winters really rough? I also know its part of tornado country -- is that something you deal with often or is that more in the rural parts?

    We love to hike and camp -- is that popular there too? Are there many lakes around that you can swim in? We can't swim in the Florida lakes at all (gators), but we have the ocean not too far away!

    Thanks so much for your input!

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Linda on 30th April 2008
  • Hi there! I live in Overland Park (but, we just got back from WDW in Orlando and I will say , i LOVED orlando!). Please check out the premier online destination for Kansas City moms on

    There are tons of moms there who can help share info with you and you'll meet some great friends and gain insight into the community as well. Take care!
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by on 8th May 2008
  • I was born and raised in Prairie Village Kansas - right outside of Overland Park. My parents are still there (I'm now in Sacramento California - moved here for work.)

    Pros: The schools are excellent, there is a lot to do, it's a wonderful place to raise kids. The housing prices are amazing. The people are friendly and the communities are supportive and warm. Neighbors actually talk to each other. And OMGPONIES the BBQ is out of this world fantastic. (I miss really really awesome Kansas City BBQ ribs - Gates was my personal favorite.)

    Cons: The weather SUCKS - so humid and hot in the summers and the winters are absolutely terrible. Cold and painful - icy, yucky, so cold your nosehairs freeze. Honestly, the weather is terrible - I think there may be a few days in spring and fall that are comfortable. However, I do miss me a really raging thunderstorm. There is something special about thunder rolling by when you get to sleep in on a Saturday morning.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by hecticmom on 8th May 2008
  • Hi Linda-

    I'm a native Kansan actually moving back to KC for a year for my husband's work, and I've lived in lots of different parts of the country, so I think I have a pretty good perspective on the pros and cons of KC. Frankly, I think it's an undiscovered gem, and I hope it stays that way! Weather-wise, I think it's better than some of the places I've lived (S. Georgia, similar to Fla), because I find hot and humid to be more uncomfortable than cold. It's true though, that it can be really frickin cold in the winter. And it is hot in the summer- but this peak of heat is much shorter than Fla (and central Tx, another area I've lived).

    Culturally, it's a fabulous city! Lots of highbrow and lowbrow options, and if you're willing to step outside of the box, fairly diverse as well. It's a city with a lot of history, which I still enjoy learning about, even though I grew up there. Overland Park has a history of being really "white," but I think that's changed some, and other parts of KC are really culturally diverse and interesting (the historic jazz district has been built up over the last few years, and is amazing). Housing prices are comparatively low, and the schools are terrific, despite the state school board's attempts to the contrary in the last few years (sorry, just a little politicizing).

    In terms of recreation, yes there are definitely areas for hiking and camping, and good access to some pretty lakes. But you'll have to look a little bit, if you're used to North Georgia-type camping- no mountains here). The Ozark Mountains are a relatively short trip, and they're really beautiful.

    I hope you enjoy it! I too have fond memories of growing up in NE Kansas, and agree that the bbq is amazing. Very different than bbq in the southeast though, and no Low Country Boil.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Traci on 8th May 2008
  • Thanks so much -- we found out that we are definitely relocating! It will be around the first/second week in July and we are very excited!

    I must admit we are a bit nervous about the weather, but honestly looking forward to some seasons again (I know some of you are chuckling now . Florida is a great place, but the constant heat and sun and absolutely no winter does wear on you after a while!

    Everything we have looked into seems to indicate that it is a great place for families which will be awesome - we are looking forward to settling into a good community!

    Thanks again for all your input - it is really appreciated!

    We are looking forward to digging into some good bbq!!
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Linda on 8th May 2008
  • Hi Linda -

    I'm a native Kansan too - Overland Park is a great place for families and the whole metro area has a lot to offer. I'll just go ahead and shamelessly plug my own site here - check out when you get to town to find fun things for your kids and your family to do around town. I hope it's helpful with your kids' transition!

    And let us know if you have any other questions about the area, schools, subdivisions, etc. - there are a number of Overland Park moms here and I'm sure we'll be able to help!

    Welcome to town!
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Kate on 29th May 2008
  • Thank you Kate -- what an awesome website! We will still have a good few summer weeks when we get there so I am excited to see what there is to do! Thanks for sharing!

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Linda on 30th May 2008
  • I recommend investing in a good board game and some ruby slippers.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Javacat on 30th May 2008

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