Best place to live in the US for four seasons?

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Posted 4/17/2014 by Lesley/ish in NSBR Board
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PeaNut 222,672
September 2005
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Loc: Scotland

Posted: 4/17/2014 7:52:13 AM
One of my oldest friends is moving to the US in the next few months. Her DH has been offered a job where he can more or less choose where he wants to be located. She is adamant she wants to live somewhere that has four distinct seasons and I told her I had the best source for such information!
So where offers cold snowy winters, fresh warm springs, long hot summers, and crisp autumn days?!
She would also like to live within an hour or two of a city that offers culture, cosmopolitan restaurants, and good shopping. They have no young kids, so schools are not an issue, but they want a house with plenty of outdoor space, and not a city apartment.
So Peas, where is this Utopian location?
(And they have a preference for the East rather than the West, simply for ease of getting back to the UK, but that's not a huge issue.)
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PeaNut 94,569
July 2003
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Loc: NE Illinois

Posted: 4/17/2014 7:57:08 AM
She could have all of those in the Chicago area, although after this past winter I don't know. This winter was rough!


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PeaNut 279,995
October 2006
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Loc: Rockville, MD

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:01:13 AM


PeaNut 278,258
September 2006
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Loc: Pa.

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:01:29 AM
Same for the Pittsburgh area!
We've got it all!



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PeaNut 139,174
March 2004
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:01:44 AM
Definitely New England! You can live in Mass, NH, RI and get to Boston in an hour. Southern Maine and you're looking at maybe 90 minutes.

We do have longer winters than summers, muddy/rainy spring but gorgeous autumns. Winter sports, beaches, professional sports, world class museums, world renowned hospitals and schools.


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PeaNut 41,258
June 2002
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Loc: Minnesota

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:11:01 AM
Minneapolis/St Paul would be another option. Four seasons and within two hours of the metro area there are countless opportunities for outdoor endeavors and affordable properties with a lot of land. It's not as cosmopolitan as say, NYC, but it's a beautiful city with all the requirements.

However, I'm guessing somewhere in New England is more likely what they are thinking, but bottom line, anywhere from Colorado to New England and north of the middle of the country would provide distinct four seasons.


PeaNut 595,029
September 2013
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:12:22 AM
Well, I am partial to Florida, but I hear that there are a lot of people who don't appreciate our summers.

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PeaNut 265,810
June 2006
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Loc: Idaho

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:14:25 AM
I'm in Boise, Idaho and we have four beautiful seasons.


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PeaNut 221,552
September 2005
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:17:32 AM
North Carolina foothills!

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PeaNut 337,804
September 2007
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:19:49 AM
North Carolina or Virgina.

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PeaNut 552,272
April 2012
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:20:38 AM
East Tennessee (Knoxville) or western NC (Ashville). Our seasons are so special and distinct. This spring has been spectular, and there's nothing like the mountains in the fall ablaze with color. And the folks in this area are nice and friendly. Really a great place to live.


PeaNut 259,367
April 2006
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Loc: Midwest

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:23:22 AM
While I am partial to Chicago, they may want to look at Colorado Springs and surrounding areas.

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PeaNut 176,832
November 2004
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:23:58 AM
Colorado or the Mid-Atlantic up to New England!

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PeaNut 242,768
January 2006
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Posted: 4/17/2014 8:25:39 AM

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PeaNut 76,343
March 2003
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Loc: Past tense.

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:25:43 AM
I agree -- either Knoxville, TN, or Asheville, NC. Nothing harsh and near all the amenities.

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PeaNut 233,457
November 2005
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Loc: Stuck in the middle

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:34:56 AM
NC. Asheville is a great suggestion.



PeaNut 71,090
February 2003
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Loc: Indiana

Posted: 4/17/2014 8:34:57 AM

East Tennessee (Knoxville) or western NC (Ashville). Our seasons are so special and distinct. This spring has been spectular, and there's nothing like the mountains in the fall ablaze with color. And the folks in this area are nice and friendly. Really a great place to live.

This is where I want to move! I would avoid anywhere in the far north. The winters are way too long for me.

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PeaNut 74,479
March 2003
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Posted: 4/17/2014 9:03:29 AM


PeaNut 101,638
August 2003
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Loc: New Hampshire

Posted: 4/17/2014 9:26:27 AM
New England! Close to the Beaches to enjoy in the Summer, the Foliage in the Fall, Snowy winters to ski and enjoy the snow and Spring in all areas is nice. Driving from NH to all the touristy destinations in VT, MA, ME, RI & CT is all within a 1-3 hours.

(We can have all four seasons in a week. 80 Degrees on Monday and we had snow on Tuesday night! )

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PeaNut 14,521
April 2001
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Loc: Washington State

Posted: 4/17/2014 9:50:07 AM
I wouldn't say Seattle. We don't get enough snow for it to really be a typical winter and our summer is way too short. Plus we are West Coast.

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PeaNut 274,243
August 2006
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Loc: Northeast

Posted: 4/17/2014 10:00:01 AM
Come to New Hampshire! I'm in the Monadnock region and we are less than 2 hours from Boston. That fits our weather pattern perfectly! We moved here from Boston for the green space and you get a lot more house for your money than Massachusetts. No income tax, but you pay for it in property tax.

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PeaNut 220,574
August 2005
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Loc: Boise, ID

Posted: 4/17/2014 10:06:25 AM

I'm in Boise, Idaho and we have four beautiful seasons.

I'll second that! Love it here!

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PeaNut 15,872
May 2001
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Loc: USA

Posted: 4/17/2014 10:12:45 AM
Richmond, VA

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PeaNut 596,083
October 2013
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Posted: 4/17/2014 10:38:06 AM
New England. Maybe knowing their hobbies/interests would help narrow it down.


PeaNut 568,835
October 2012
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Loc: In the boot state at the parish line

Posted: 4/17/2014 10:41:05 AM
Another vote for Asheville or hickory NC

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PeaNut 417,169
March 2009
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Posted: 4/17/2014 10:45:38 AM
Definitely New England!! Not only does it have the four seasons but it's also close to the beach. There are so many wonderful places to live that are an hour or so outside of Boston.


PeaNut 51,943
October 2002
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Posted: 4/17/2014 10:50:06 AM
Michigan! Bonus she can use her hand to point out where she lives to family and friends!

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PeaNut 477,269
August 2010
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Posted: 4/17/2014 10:51:00 AM
Lake Tahoe Nevada

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PeaNut 151,660
June 2004
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Loc: KY

Posted: 4/17/2014 10:53:53 AM
Cincinnati tristate area, we've experienced all 4 seasons this week! LOL

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PeaNut 13,501
April 2001
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Loc: east coast

Posted: 4/17/2014 11:00:47 AM
Pittsburgh gets all 4.

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PeaNut 140,176
April 2004
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Posted: 4/17/2014 11:00:47 AM

Pittsburgh. Definitely.

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PeaNut 135,321
March 2004
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Posted: 4/17/2014 11:03:10 AM
I agree with Virginia or NC. My favorite memory of living in Virginia years ago is the distinct four seasons.

I would NOT agree with Minneapolis/St. Paul. My sister lives there and the winters can last forever! And they can be very harsh...


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PeaNut 264,166
June 2006
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Loc: Colorado

Posted: 4/17/2014 11:04:20 AM
Colorado! And Denver does have some direct flights to the UK.

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PeaNut 395,153
October 2008
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Loc: Here

Posted: 4/17/2014 11:16:19 AM
Having lived in New England, upstate NY, and the DC area my vote is New England! Boston is a great city, and there are so many lovely day trip/weekend getaway options, such as Portland, ME; Newport, RI; Portsmouth, NH; Burlington, VT; the Berkshires in Western MA; Cape Cod in Southeastern MA; and the North Shore of MA, just to name a few. We are famous for our autumn leaves. You can also get to NYC from the Boston area in about 4 hours driving or 1 hour flying. Boston's airport is large, so getting to the UK or to other American cities, like DC, is pretty easy. I am partial to the Western suburbs of Boston, but there are beautiful areas North of the city, like Salem and Gloucester.

For a much lower cost of living I would consider Western New York as well. Buffalo is only a two hour drive to Toronto, Ontario. It has a decent sized airport, or you can drive to Toronto and pick up international flights there. Buffalo itself has a decent amount of culture and a large destination mall. Again, flights to places like DC, Boston, and NYC are under 1.5 hours.

I don't think the "four seasons" in the DC/Northern Virginia/Maryland area can compete with states northeast of it. Fall is pretty short and the trees don't look that great. Spring is nice and winter is pretty mild, but the summers are long and too hot and humid for me.


PeaNut 56,234
November 2002
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Loc: Western Burbs of Chicago, IL

Posted: 4/17/2014 11:31:40 AM
I love living in the suburbs of Chicago, but our taxes suck and so does our state government. This winter was brutal and I have a hunch we'll have no spring weather and jump right into the 90's. Seems like we have two seasons, winter and summer.


PeaNut 178,513
November 2004
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Loc: New England

Posted: 4/17/2014 11:56:33 AM
Another vote for New England! From NH, you can drive to Boston in an hour, even NYC isn't that bad of a drive. The beautiful oceans of ME and mountains of VT are easily accessible from NH too.

Like a previous poster said - we've had all 4 seasons just this week!

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PeaNut 257,022
April 2006
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Loc: USA

Posted: 4/17/2014 12:01:15 PM
Knoxville, TN or tri-state Cinncinatti

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PeaNut 138,670
March 2004
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Loc: Oregon

Posted: 4/17/2014 12:14:54 PM
Portland Oregon!
We have four distinct seasons as well as mountains if you want more snow, dessert if you want more sun, and beaches if you want more SAND. Plus tons of pretty trees.


PeaNut 102,718
August 2003
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Loc: Sandusky, OH

Posted: 4/17/2014 12:20:43 PM

Cincinnati tristate area, we've experienced all 4 seasons this week! LOL

I was going to suggest anywhere in Ohio because we sometimes experience all 4 seasons in just a matter of days like we did this week.

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PeaNut 190,373
February 2005
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Posted: 4/17/2014 12:23:37 PM
Colorado Springs! Close to Denver but there is culture here too and we have all 4 seasons. Of course we have had all four seasons this week!

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PeaNut 96,783
July 2003
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Posted: 4/17/2014 12:37:05 PM
Do they have to select a location before arriving in the US? I would want to check out various locations before deciding. If I wasn't able to do that I'd select Colorado and use the Denver airport for flights.

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PeaNut 93,127
June 2003
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Loc: Somewhere over the rainbow

Posted: 4/17/2014 12:40:00 PM
To me anyplace in Northern GA, TN, KY or VA are great places to experience all 4 seasons


PeaNut 82,074
April 2003
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Loc: CT

Posted: 4/17/2014 2:05:19 PM
How about Connecticut?

We have 4 seasons, Long Island Sound and the ocean for boating in summer and we get snow in the winter. It is beautiful in the fall.

NYC and Boston are close enough to drive to in an hour or 2 for a day of shopping, have dinner, or see a play or concert.

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PeaNut 468,133
May 2010
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Posted: 4/17/2014 2:40:26 PM
Many years ago the company I was working for wanted to transfer me to the DC area. But after talking with some people who lived there, I took it off the table. They told me that in the summer, it is so humid as soon as you walk outside your shirt gets soaked. As someone who hates heat and humidity, that was not very enticing to me.

When I inquired about an area to live where I would feel safe walking my dogs after dark, they told me such areas were expensive. (More than I could afford on my moderate salary at the time.)

I can only speak first-hand to Colorado as the places I've lived with 4 distinct seasons, although I understand the fall colors in Colorado pale in comparison to the colors in New England.

ETA: Another consideration is winter. In some places (I see Buffalo mentioned) I've heard that once the snow falls, there is snow on the ground until spring. In Colorado, it's melted within hours or a few days at most.

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PeaNut 82,634
April 2003
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Loc: Seattle, WA

Posted: 4/17/2014 2:49:36 PM
I've gotta cast my vote for Seattle. We see all four seasons.
Some winters aren't terrible, other we get snow. So, not counting on big snowy winters, this would be your place.


PeaNut 562,444
August 2012
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Posted: 4/17/2014 3:26:09 PM
4 seasons? or 4 good seasons and how long do you want them to be? I have never found a place that have great seasons all year long.

Heat, snow, cold, wind, tornados hurricanes, earthquakes, humidity. LOL


PeaNut 570,639
October 2012
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Posted: 4/17/2014 4:04:50 PM
NOT Utah. Spring sucks.


PeaNut 587,882
May 2013
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Posted: 4/17/2014 4:19:43 PM
Metropolitan DC area.


PeaNut 326,119
July 2007
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Loc: Ohio

Posted: 4/17/2014 4:27:03 PM
Central Ohio, and Columbus has an airport. There are county fairs in the summer, tons of festivals, craft fairs, and gorgeous leaf color in the fall, beautiful spring flowers, and the winters aren't normally as harsh/cold as this one was. We have Easton and Polaris as shopping/dining/cultural destinations. Polaris is basically in my back yard. (I'm about 6 minutes from it.)

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PeaNut 69,081
February 2003
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Posted: 4/17/2014 4:28:55 PM
Upstate New York -Albany and points west.

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