Yankees Urge Invasion of Charlottesville

Jack writes: The New York Times (free registration required) has an article today entitled “36 Hours | Charlottesville, Va.” This article is unique in national coverage of Charlottesville as an upscale tourist destination, as the writer seems to have found the Downtown Mall. Unfortunately, no mention is given to essential tourist stops such as the White Spot or Matthew Farrell. Gems in this article include the assertation that “Jeans and quilted barn coats pass for chic in this horse-crazy town.” Note to self: mug homeless man for wardrobe.

16 thoughts on “Yankees Urge Invasion of Charlottesville”

  1. Is it just me, or do others think that anyone who took the NY Times up on their advice to visit Cville would be disappointed? Don’t get me wrong–I love it hear and I think it’s a neat gem of a town. But I feel like you have to live here to begin to experience the best of it. I imagine someone coming down for a three-day weekend and dutifully visiting the spots named in the article would get a couple good meals, some tourist snaps of the Rotunda, and mostly a sense of being on the outside looking in.

    I don’t know–I don’t travel that much, maybe I don’t understand what people are looking for when they go to "hot tourist destinations."

  2. Interesting…I agree. I think the charm is in living here, in seeing the leaves change over time, and in falling in love with a small-ish, quirky-ish, friendly-ish town.

  3. Have you ever been to NYC? Charlottesville is a utopia in comparison. Why do you think there are so many NY refugees here?

  4. I almost have to agree. As a NY refugee myself, this is quite a change. I loved it when I lived there, and there are things I miss (the beach most of all), but for the most part, I like it here – more than I thought I would.

    I can’t say I’d never move back, but for now I’m quite happy here. My dad calls Charlottesville the 6th borough. :)

  5. That reviewer sure managed to hit all of the expensive points of Charlottesville. I could blow an entire paycheck in a weekend if I followed this gal’s instructions!

  6. Probably because they wanted to raise their families in a suburban setting but didn’t care for the cookie-cutter suburbia that is Westchester County, NJ, or CT. And here they can afford a fabulous house and supplement their salary (which was probably cut in half) with the money they made off of the sale of their 2 bedroom co-op.

    As far as utopia goes, I think it’s what you make of it. I moved up to NYC from Charlottesville in May, and I have to say, I think NYC is great, in spite of the financial struggle required for me to be up here…multiple reasons for that, just a few of which are: diversity (and really seeing what happens when people of diverse backgrounds interact–both good and for ill), knowing that everything you really need is within a 2 block radius of your apartment, being a single girl in Charlottesville was WAY worse than being a single girl in NYC (more fish in this ocean than in the puddle, i suppose), nearly endless opportunities to experience art in all forms and (for me at least) a sense that the opportunities are limitless if you’re willing to put your nose to the grindstone and go for it. Yeah, rent is high and taxes are ridiculous, but the rest of the things you need can be had for cheap (or at least at the same price as C-ville) once you figure out where to look for them.

    Don’t get me wrong–C-ville is a great town–I had a lot of good times here, but C-ville and New York are apples and oranges, and to compare them does neither justice. It may be too soon to say that the C-ville boomerang effect won’t suck me back down south, but I feel like New York is becoming home more and more every day. That said, when I have vacation time and don’t want to head back to the midwest to see family, I’ll probably come down to the ‘ville…there is something comforting about wandering down the downtown mall and bumping into 10 people you know (sometimes).

  7. Uh, yeah. Why would anyone vacation here? You’d be bored by lunch time.

    Don’t get defensive people, I know how rabid you all get when someone doesn’t think this is the best place on Earth. I’ve lived in a lot of places, and Cville ranks about a 5 on a 1 to 10 scale.

    It’s OK – not bad, but certainly nothing that I get excited about.

    The shopping is inadequate. Yes, it IS. Traffic is to heavy (weird since there’s no shopping, what IS everyone doing?) Real estate prices are insane. Most employers think they provide lower salaries because it’s so wonderful here.

    Yeah, we’ve got UVA games, the downtown mall, proximity to the national park, and a couple of other things that add up to this being an "OK" area to live in.

    But what’s annoying is the attitude of local resident that seem to want LESS to do in this area rather than more. I don’t want to bulldoze the countryside either, but we can’t cram 100,000 people into the metro Cville area and never build anything to support their needs.

    As far as the leaves changing, etc. that was mentioned earlier, hey, that’s nice – and just as nice if not nicer in New England as it is here.

    I don’t dislike it here. I am just marginally satisfied if not slightly annoyed. But I am certainly not excited.

  8. You are certainly right on the mark when you say that comparing Cville to NYC is an unfair comparison, yet surpirsingly I hear this comparison from Charlottesville Fan Boys all the time.

  9. Correct me if I am wrong … but didn’t the Yankees already invade Charlottesville once already, and it was only for the grace of Mr. Lincoln (who gave specific instructions that that Mr. Jefferson’s school be left untouched) that the town and University wern’t torched.

  10. I’ve found that boriing people are easily bored.

    I’m pleased that Charlottesville fails to meet the needs of recreational shoppers. I think that speaks volumes as to the values of many of the people who choose to live here. No doubt there are many places with better shopping facilities. If that’s important to you, it might be a good idea to either relocate nearer to those facilities or resign yourself to making a bit of a trek to indulge your need to shop.

    In any case, please don’t try to re-make this place into a shopper’s paradise. All places don’t have to be alike. Allow us to retain our boring home?

  11. agreed–richmond is close enough if I really really must have access to every national chain and warehouse.

    and richmond is also just FAR enough away to keep all that crap out of my life. (Full disclosure: I’ve only felt compelled to travel to Richmond for shopping when I was pregnant and could not find any decent maternity clothes here for decent prices. Target, it turns out, is the mecca for affordable not-ugly maternity clothes.)

  12. Charlottesville life isn’t for everyone, which is one of the things that makes it great for those of us who love it here. People who want everything a big city has to offer (e.g., lots of shopping choices) should be living in or much nearer to one; if your values are in line with NYC or LA, you probably won’t be happy here. Complaining about how boring you think our town is won’t improve your enjoyment of life in Charlottesville. (mmike87, I’m not directing that last comment at you in particular; it’s just a general observation.)

    But what’s annoying is the attitude of local resident that seem to want LESS to do in this area rather than more. I don’t want to bulldoze the countryside either, but we can’t cram 100,000 people into the metro Cville area and never build anything to support their needs.

    Once you consider that many local residents don’t want 100,000 people crammed into our metro area, it all makes sense. An elitist attempt to hold onto a good thing? Maybe. But this attitude nonetheless exists for a reason.

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