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Amarillo, Texas SperlingViews



"Great place to live"


Great place to live - 9/24/2006
10 2
Abhd
Lake Dallas, TX

I've lived in Amarillo twice for a total of 35 years, but now live in Dallas due to a job change. I would move back to Amarillo if I were able. You get 4 seasons for the most part. It usually snows several times in the winter, sometimes as early as early Nov and as late as April. Most of the time it is only a few inches but every few years you'll get a foot or more. But usually melts off quickly due to the abundance of sunshine. The northers that bring snow blow in quick and leave quick. Fall and spring are beautiful. The least desiraeable part of the weather is the wind. Winds can be very annoying in spring and sometimes in fall. Summers are pleasant with highs in 90's but evenings and mornings cooling into the 70's and sometimes 60's due to the high elevation and low humidity. Amarillo is flat, farm and ranch country. Oil, gas, and cattle play a big part in the economy. Bell Helicopter is a large employer in Amarillo as this where they assemble the Osprey for the military. Owens Corning fiberglass has a large plant there, as well as Iowa Beef Processors has a large slaughter/process facility there. Pantex is located about 15 miles east of Amarillo and is another large employer, where nuclear weapons are disassembled, put back together , stored, etc.. (Nobody can really tell you.. secretish you know). Anyway I like Amarillo. The low humidity and mild weather allows me to tolerate the wind and occasional cold spell. Palo Duro Canyon is about a 40 minute drive away and is a nice place to mountain bike & camp. It is a nice place to raise a family and is fairly conservative in a good sort of way. However there are a percentage of people who move here who feel uncomfortable with the lack of trees, mountains, and the fact you can see about 30 miles when you get outside of town. My advice... try before you buy. ;)

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janet
Amarillo, TX

amarillo - 11/19/2014

Great size town, but very hot in summer. Must belong to a church to develop friends.

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Robert
Amarillo, TX

Amarillo - 5/16/2014

Amarillo is a city of about 220 thousand people. The cost of livinbg there is one of the cheapest I have found during my cost-of-living analysis of other cities. The climate is good for the most part with a low humidity. The only down other than heat in the summer is the constant wind that blows through the panhandle. I describe Amarillo as the best place to fly a kit.

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Art
Austin, TX

So glad I got out of here! - 3/17/2013

I unfortunately spent my first 18 years in this city. On a positive note, growing up here taught me not to take more lively, active cities for granted. Had I grown up on the coast, in the mountains, or in a sprawling metropolis, I probably wouldn't appreciate it as much. That being said, everything else about Amarillo is quite depressing. It's extremely segregated, wildly lacking in diversity, and a culturally-poor city. In terms of economy, this place leaves much to be desired. The majority of jobs here are low-paying, service occupations, and if this trend continues, I can see the area having major financial problems in the future. The scarcity of water is another thing to monitor. Not many people want to live here, and that's why the major high-tech and creative industries are not blowing up here. Salaries are low, education levels are low, and crime is fairly high for a city it's size in this part of the country. Recreational opportunities are practically non-existent, and attractions are few and far between. The Texas Panhandle is really just a flat, dead, dry, desolate wasteland. Only a few months of the year really offer attractive weather. The summers are scorching hot and the winters are freezing cold. If you're looking for a music scene or an emphasis on the arts/entertainment, you will be sorely disappointed. The low cost of living and lack of traffic are both positive aspects. You can get anywhere in about 10 minutes..not that there's many places you would really want to go.

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Alex
Amarillo, TX

A REAL opinion + Facts - 1/3/2013

I've lived in Amarillo all my life and reading these opinions of other people disappoint me. I want to do our city justice. Amarillo as a city has everything you need except an apple store. - The restaurants are numerous and great! The schools.. education is above standard in the primary high school (Amarillo High) but lacks in other schools. Jobs are easy to come by and pay well. The housing is excellent! Real estate is very popular and there are new housing developments. Healthcare is mediocre. The public sanctuaries... awful. A city of this size deserves a aquatic center. People are kind and calm, tough and resilient. Amarillo's weather is mild, warm bare able summers and a swift cold winter. There is a lot of sun! Sports are competitive on the high school level (Excluding Amarillo High, they dominate at there level) but most great athletes go on to other places. It's a great place for your kids.. as long as your decent people. Amarillo is renowned for is crazy High school parties often not destructive or deadly but usually ends in everybody going home late. Amarillo has 4 parts (according to me) The colonies, Puckett, sleepy hollow etc. are middle class - upper middle class neighborhoods (Amarillo High or Tascosa High school) The "ghetto" or lower class neighbor hoods are terrible and usually under maintained (poverty line). "Middle Town" Chase building etc, usually businesses some lower class residential. Lastly the country. This is "Randall" middle class and open area, your neighbors are maybe 50 yards away from your house so you have a fair amount of privacy. Amarillo has houses ranging from nothing to upwards of a million+. Charity and personal kindness is big in this town it is one of the best places to raise children and live a quiet calm life. Panhandling is a major problem but other then that there is very little crime in amarillo aside from a rare bank robbery or shooting. If your a good person your always safe. Amarillo I might add.. has a substantial car paradise. Usually not to buy but many people own extremely expensive cars! I've seen a Bugatti Veyron cruising down my street! In conclusion... Amarillo is that city everyone who grows up in it say they hate it but always end up coming back. Its a great place, I love it! LASTLY-- It is about a 5 hour drive from red river, Taos, Angel Fire, Dallas/fortworth. Also the Palo-duro canyon is near buy, (2nd largest canyon in US). Amarillo is a simple paradise. Im proud to call this my home.

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Jennifer
San Antonio, TX

Leaving Amarillo: Bitter Sweet endings The GOOD Th - 11/23/2012

We lived in Amarillo for 5 months after my husband took a job there. We went sight unseen and I honestly tried to find great things about Amarillo before going and had a hard time finding anything "good" about Amarillo online. When we pulled into town my husband and I wanted to turn around... YES it was that bad, but I rest assure you there are some great things about Amarillo, which I never thought I would be able to say. Most of the people are very lovely when we first moved in to our house my husband was at work and our neighbor came and helped us unload! The cost of living/Housing: When you look on line it looks like Amarillo is cheap to live, but they are under going a housing crisis there are A TON of jobs there, but there is a housing shortage. If you have a large family get ready to pay big bucks or get a lower priced 3 bed for around 1200/month if you want to be in a descent neighborhood. Housing is usually much higher like 1400-1600 for 3 beds and up to 2400 if you want a 4 bed. Yes you can find one for lower price but let me tell you they are hard to find. We looked for 4 months before we moved and what we found is that there are a few main players in town with rentals mostly private owners with multiple properties and the rent is about the same between each property and if you want to pay under 1000 get ready to live in farm country in an old mobile home or in the GHETTO and I mean gangs, crime, drugs anything on the north side of town is ghetto. Also, most of the homes in Amarillo are older homes so be prepared to live in an old home unless you want to fork out big bucks. Schools: In my opinion the best high schools to live near are Amarillo High or Tascosa. Amarillo does not transport your kids to school unless you are more than 2 miles from your school and they have it set up so almost no one is 2 miles away. We lived 1.8 miles away and all the kids started at the same exact time whether grade school or high school. My kids could arrive at 7:30 AM and then end times were 15 minute increments for each school and grade level, so it would give me adequate time to make it to the next pick up on time, but it resulted in tons of in car time transporting kids. We have lots of kids this did not make me a happy mom. My suggestion find a place in walking distance to school at whatever distance you are comfortable with or get ready to drive!!! The schools are also very strict with good old fashioned values. I love this about them. They have a no cell phone policy and they fine the students for using their phones. If papers are late they won't accept them. They help reinforce manners and discipline from home. Most of the teachers are christians and they do offer christian educational classes like old testament history for instance at school. My younger kids went to Coronado and I loved the school so much when we left I wanted to take it with us! The administrative staff there is better than any school any of my kids have ever attended and it was the next best thing aside from having me care for my own kids or homeschool. I really felt like these high standards were helping me to teach my kids responsibility. I have lived in the Seattle area and Idaho and honestly other places are so care free students don't have any sense of the value of education and these schools help students realize how valuable education is and I saw a difference in the attitudes my kids left with in the 5 short months we were there and really only 2 1/2 in school. There is also a lot of educational opportunities for older students to get education directed to career specific focused material through the Amarillo Area Advanced Learning Center which is open to the entire city no matter what high school you are zoned for and the teachers there push and challenge the students, hold them accountable and it is one of the most advanced programs for the entire state of Texas. Medical: Medical is horrible. If you are a basically healthy family medical is fine but if you have any health issues get ready to travel to Lubbock, Dallas, San Antonio, or Houston. We have children with GI issues and the ONLY pediatric GI doc in the area is in his 70's or 80's and he does not stay up to date on new research or even research new info you inform him about. He is very prideful and works at Texas Tech but cannot fathom the idea that some one else may be wiser or have more info about a particular subject it hurts his feelings. Although there is Texas Tech I found some of the techniques they use there are even out dated as compared to Seattle or Boise State. My teenage daughter was going to get her tonsils removed in Idaho but they couldn't get her in before we moved and at Texas Tech they told us it takes too long for children to recover so they only take them as a last resort, but in other places we were told the exact opposite so go figure. Traffic: There isn't usually much traffic you can get around fairly fast, but there are a lot of accidents, people don't know how to drive in Amarillo the roads are crazy and confusing, but fine once you get used to them. People are killed regularly due to poor driving. Expect the unexpected and be careful on those access roads people will run you off the road and if you make them mad expect road rage. The road rage is Amarillo is worse than Seattle and when you get honked at expect to it to be 4 times longer than any other honk! Ethnicity: Whites are a minority in Amarillo. Their are total black neighborhoods and if you wind up in the wrong area you will feel like you are at a park straight out of boy in the hood. I am not prejudiced but I am from the NW where there has never really been prejudice before and the blacks seem to not like the white folk. Churches: There are some amazing churches and people in Amarillo. My personal favorite was the Arena of Life Cowboy Church. The people their are super nice and they hear God. You can see the love of Jesus on the people and the pastors are like family. They genuinely care for you and want to see you grow into spiritual maturity. It is a great man's church NOT just for cowboys but for any one! They have a fabulous womens bible study that meet the first Tues of each month and they have an adult teaching on wed nights for an hour while the youth meets which is really nice for it to be at the same time. They have lots of family activities, festivals, rodeo's, camping trips, etc they do as a church. Food: There is a ton of good places to eat La Bella Pizza you can get a gigantic pizza for under $20 and it will feed your large family! I love tea in the gas stations you will find tea bars with tons of different flavored tea's and lemonades as well, at some of them you will find unsweetened flavored teas which were my favorite. I miss the raspberry already! Things to do: The zoo is free on Mondays that is when we'd go and it only takes about 10 minutes for a tour so that is a good time to go. Wonderland is pricey but they have good deals daily depending on the day. There are less crowds on Sundays before 7pm then it becomes packed. It was a lot of fun. Weather: There is a saying if you don't like the weather, just wait 5 minutes and it will change. During the summer it was 117 for weeks. The wind would blow like crazy every day and it would be hot like a blow dryer or cold depending on which direction it would come from. We never experience the wind we heard about, but when it stormed everything flooded. Fall seemed to be really cold one day and really hot the next very unpredictable. Amarillo isn't a pretty town by any means, but the people there are genuinely nice and all around have good values even the Market Street grocery store is christian owned and has a prayer request box on the counter and a free dietician. The people are what makes this city a great place to be and although I couldn't wait to leave I miss it already!

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Ann
Olathe, KS

Amarillo: the good, the bad and the ugly - 4/5/201 - 4/24/2012

Josh, thanks for your very candid review of Amarillo. Some of the things you'd mentioned I had already suspected.

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Josh
Amarillo, TX

In closing - 4/5/2012

All in all , if my wife and I didn't have two small children we would leave like yesterday. If you want to move to Texas , there's lots of great places Amarillo isn't one of them.

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Josh
Amarillo, TX

Amarillo: the good, the bad and the ugly - 4/5/2012

I've lived hear for nine years so hear's my objective opinion on Amarillo The Good- Despite what others have said the people hear are very hospitable and welcoming of outsiders. I've made several friends hear and met my wife hear as well.With two interstates running through town Amarillo is a very easy city to get around. Also, if you like barbecue , mexican and asian food , there are plenty of good restaruants to choose from.Finally despite the complaints the winters hear are actually pretty mild but then again I'm originally from Indiana. The Bad- Where as Amarillo has several barbacue, mexican and Asian restaruants too choose from , nothing else much other than your typical chains. The local music scene is horrible. Our so called baseball team barely registers as a minor league team. They play in a semi - pro league with no affiliation to a major league team.The air service from our "International" airport is a joke. There are only three air carriers to choose from so the selection of flights is poor and the air fares are extremely high compared to other cities. There is no Amtrack servive . On the rare occasions that it does snow the streets are a mess because no won in this town knows how to run a snow plow. On the few occasions that it rains the streets are a mess because the drainage system is pathetic. Road conditions are less than adequate and crime has been getting worse. Amarillo, also, has one of the worst teenage pregnancy rates in the country. Sure there are plenty of jobs but none of them pay anything.Oh did I mention the wind blows , forget Chicago , Amarillo is the windy city. The Ugly- Amarillo is a depressing looking city with it's dust and yellow grass (only Lubbock is worse). Amarillo is far way from everywhere and close to no where( literally stuck in the middle of no man's land). Also, this town is run by a silent but arrogant political machine that's comprised of the city commission , the mayor and the local newspaper which acts as ministers of propaganda for the powers that be.

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Julie
Amarillo, TX

Life in Amarillo - 2/12/2010

Amarillo is the best place to live and raise a family. Our community holds dear the ideals of being polite, courteous, and respectful. I wouldn't live anywhere else.

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Wayne
Clarendon, TX

The reopening of Amarillo AFB, 1950 - 7/12/2008

I was part of the first USAF elements to reopen Amarillo AFB back in 1950. The were no military structures to live in and the base had to be built from the ground up. We live in an aircraft hanger (Post WW11 leftover) until military living quarters were built. Wheat had been stored in the hangers from 1946 to 1950 and the rats some as large as dogs shared our living quarters. Born and raised in the farm heartland of Indiana, Amarillo was a tremendous change for me and many others. The population of Amarillo at that time was around 70,000. Homes for sale were around $12,850.00 for a three bedroom and single garage. Presently living in Clarendon, Texas and USAF Retired, Amarillo brings back many menories when I shop there today.

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Dave
Amarillo, TX

Weather - 6/6/2008

The weather here (and forecast) can change rapidly. The daily high temperatures sometimes vary greatly withing a few days. For example, I remember a Monday when the high temperature was 33 and we had a significant snowfall (roads covered with snow and ice); that Wednesday the high temperature was 69.

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Nichol
Amarillo, TX

Not Just a Truck Stop - 5/18/2008

Amarillo has a wide range of entertainment options. Approximately 20 miles south of town is Palo Duro Canyon state park: Palo Duro Canyon is the second largest canyon system in the US (only the Grand Canyon is bigger). There are several museums in the area, including the Amarillo Museum of Art, and the American Quarter Horse Museum. In nearby Canyon, TX is the very large and diverse Panhandle Plains Historical Museum. There are two theatre groups in town for those who like plays. Amarillo also boasts a symphony, chamber music group, ballet and opera. In the fall is the Tri-State Fair, sort of a giant county fair. The convention center and the event center host a wide range of events from rodeos to concerts. Amarillo has professional minor league hockey, baseball and football teams for those who enjoy watching sports.

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Jeff
Amarillo, TX

Will you wake up in the morning,with the Pantex Nu - 5/15/2008

Accidents are possible,and there have been several employees fired for sleeping on the job..The people of Amarillo are nice,and respectful..Unemployement is low. The bad things are high Burgulary rates,flat lands...{ A few rolling hills Northwest of city] .We have the most most Apartment complexes in the Nation at 49% {MAY 2008 city census].49% of population is renting.....This is because Amarillo has probably the highest property Taxes in the Nation,thus making it unaffordable for many to own houses...Entertainment is few.No beaches,Mountains..There is a Wonderland Carnival,with about 20 rides,and the Fair comes in August..People are really big on eating out here..Minumum wage is $5.85......State Health care is really hard to get.If you are single,you need to make under $308 a month to get it.So you can see all homeless people qualify

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Kathy
Xenia, OH

New nurse traveler to Amarillo - 12/8/2007

I haven't been to Amarillo yet. I have a travel nurse assignment at the hospital on Coulter. The assignment is to 'tentatively' start on Dec 17. I have searched online, and have gotten some information on Amarillo. I realize that it is a relatively small city, but if anyone has any tips, etc,. for my assignment to be a success, let me know. I also would like any information about Texas, and nice cities to take on another travel assignment. Thanks Kathy, RN

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Optimistic
Amarillo, TX

A mixture of the good and the bad - 7/23/2007

I've lived in Amarillo for about a year, and see it as having some strengths as well as some significant weaknesses. Rental housing can be inexpensive, but the most economical places to live are often of substandard quality or in bad neighborhoods. Salaries are low because employers believe that the cost of living is also low. If you can afford to buy a house they are probably right. If you are renting they are not. If you do find decent housing the area feels very safe. I sleep with my windows open and don't worry about crime. People are friendly, but the friendliness is limited. For example, the clerk in the grocery store will be very pleasant and chatty, but it's very difficult to build real friendships beyond "Hi! How y'all doing?" Social opportunities are few and far between unless you are active in a church, or very involved with family. Most people who live here have always lived in the area, so are not especially open to expanding their social circle to include you. Nor are they especially skilled at making a newcomer feel welcome in any substantive way. Entertainment opportunities are limited. There are mainstream movie theaters, a wide range of franchised restaurants, and there is a pretty good shopping mall. There are a few decent museums, and there are musical and dramatic performances at West Texas A&M University. The local newspaper is awful. But the local television news coverage is some of the best I've seen. The landscape and skies are very impressive. Winters are surprisingly cold and snowy, but this summer has been mild and comfortable. The wind is pretty constant. If you can find a home with a storm shelter you will feel more secure. Amarillo is not a horrible place, but I find it hard to recommend it. Salaries are low and I've had an impossibly hard time building a social life as a middle-aged, single woman who isn't interested in attending church. The people I know who like it here have other reasons to like it, such as having family locally, or having lived here long enough (upwards of 20 years) to make personal connections.

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joseph
Amarillo, TX

Paradox in the Panhandle - 7/1/2007

This is my second tour in Amarillo, the first was 1979-1984. Like everywhere else, Amarillo changed while I was away. It is truly a paradox; some great things, some horrible things and the normal day to day stuff you find anywhere. First the good; Healthcare is a main employer in the area with continued expansion of facilities, physicians and good care. Baptist/St Anthony's rated as a top hospital. Several local physicians are on the Texas Monthly annual "Top Docs" list. I relocated from central New Jersey this last time; Don't believe what Amarillans tell you about the traffic. There is none to speak of. I can get from the airport (far east) to the mall far west in 10-15 minutes any day, any time. No rush hour to speak of, minor delays for road construction and the like. Summer nights are the best in the world-Cool temps (high 60s-70s) low humindity and often a nice breeze. Sunsets are legendary. If you are a photographer spend one season here and just shoot the myraid of sunsets. Palo Duro Canyon is 18 miles to the south-the best kept secret of the American West is this one of kind canyon environment in the middle of the flat plains. Cool, really cool. Flat plains-few trees, views for miles, either you like it or you don't. It's either very "freeing" or incredibly depressing. Some get "island" fever. Now the bad; Economy is chocked full of service minimum wage type jobs. A year or so ago a consultant warned the city that in 15-20 years the economy would "worsen" significantly because of an uneducated work force and few opportunities. The only bleaker outlook in the state was the Rio Grande Valley. Don't believe the population percentages. Potter County (northern Amarillo) is 47% hispanic. This includes a large hispanic culture of Spanish as primary language. The east end of old route 66, Amarillo Blvd, resembles Tijuana with primarily Hispanic signs and businesses. 20% of the population of Potter County is on food stamps. That lends to job market statistics. Cultural events are limited to local ballet and symphony (hey, they try) and primary chain type eataries (Chili's, Applebee's, Olive Garden, etc, et al). All of the above are fine if you are not accustomed to other opportunities. Housing market is overpriced for job opportunities. Houses are higher for similar size found in Dallas/Ft. Worth. Crime is a problem. Violent crime: murder, rape twice national average. Property crime: twice the national average. High percent

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BRIAN
Clovis, NM

constant visitor - 4/23/2007

I lived in a town about the size of Amarillo when I was a teenager. Couldn't wait to get out of there because there was nothing to do. Sometimes you just have to look a little harder. I travel to Palo Duro Canyon, close to Amarillo one or two times a week to mountain bike. I've lived in the area for 20 years and was introduced to the canyon by my son. It's a beautiful place with the plants changing in color almost weekly during the spring. My grand daughter and I discovered 11 different creatures in about an hour and a half including the first dung beetle we'd ever seen other than in a book. Of course the outdoors is not everyone's cup of tea, but if you like that kind of thing it's the best in the area.

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karen
Amarillo, TX

Big truck stop - 3/7/2007

have lived here for almost 4 years now and I can't wait to leave. There isn't any entertainment unless you eat out at restaurants or go to the movies. (I have gained weight and seen almost every movie that has come out in the theaters.) The next biggest "town" for entertainment is Lubbock which is a 2 hour drive. Albuquerque is 4 hours away (gambling) OKC is 4 hours the other direction. The pay here is pathetic. Having a bachelor's degree means nothing when you get paid a quarter more an hour that someone doing the same job with a high school diploma. Houses are more expensive here than in DFW metroplex and gas here is notoriously the highest in the state. If you have young kids, it would be a great place to raise a family as there are activities for young children (Discovery Center, Wonderland, a zoo..) There are 4 seasons, which is good. The wind is a constant companion as are the rolling tumbleweeds in the springtime.

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karen
Amarillo, TX

Big truck stop - 3/2/2007

I have lived here for almost 4 years now and I can't wait to leave. There isn't any entertainment unless you eat out at restaurants or go to the movies. (I have gained weight and seen almost every movie that has come out in the theaters.) The next biggest "town" for entertainment is Lubbock which is a 2 hour drive. Albuquerque is 4 hours away (gambling) OKC is 4 hours the other direction. The pay here is pathetic. Having a bachelor's degree means nothing when you get paid a quarter more an hour that someone doing the same job with a high school diploma. Houses are more expensive here than in DFW metroplex and gas here is notoriously the highest in the state. If you have young kids, it would be a great place to raise a family as there are activities for young children (Discovery Center, Wonderland, a zoo..) There are 4 seasons, which is good. The wind is a constant companion as are the rolling tumbleweeds in the springtime.

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Lee
Amarillo, TX

Nice Weather - 12/16/2006

four seasons

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