Winston-Salem, North Carolina

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What's it like to live in Winston-Salem?

Moving to Winston Salem

As others have said, both pollen and humidity can be wicked. Winters are mild. In my neighborhood over the 16 years I've lived here we've only had a few incidents of crime. My dog kept my house from being broken into once.

I feel perfectly safe here (in Winston) walking my dog at night. I'd check into the specific neighborhoods for crime reports.

Winston has some treasures. One is Salem Lake, a large lake with a seven mile trail around it, surrounded by lots of woods. Another is Reynolda Gardens, the former home of RJ and Katharine Reynolds. There's a large green lawn out front (great for a picnic) and lots of walking trails. The house itself is a home to a museum of American art. The downtown transformation has been amazing, including repurposing of old tobacco factories.

In non-covid times Winston hosts the national Black Theater festival and River Run film festival. If you like sports, there's minor league baseball and hockey, and teams from Wake Forest University and Winston-Salem State University.

You'll find total strangers speaking to you as you pass by, and generally there are a lot of good hearted people here. The person who said that it's really more like a town than a city nailed it. Older Southern women (I'm in my 60's, so I count I guess) have been trained from a young age never to communicate directly, especially if it's confrontational. If they say, "bless your heart," you know it wasn't a compliment. I've found this to be one of the confusing things for transplants.

The worst weather we get is the occasional tornado. TAKE THE WARNINGS SERIOUSLY. (I have family members who are alive today only because they went to their basement.

One of the downsides to Winston is that it's pretty car dependent. Ardmore is one of the few walkable neighborhoods. We have outstanding medical care with two major health systems in town, including a medical school.

Well, this is long, but I grew up here and have been back here for about fifteen years.

Moving to Winston Salem

Winston-Salem is great. It is truly welcoming to all types. As someone said, the city itself leans to the left politically, but the suburbs and surrounding rural areas are very conservative. IMO, the political idealogy diversity a good thing. Nobody seems to shove their politics down your throat here.

There are some nice places to eat, and a few good breweries. Not really a "nightclub" scene here, but for me that doesn't matter.

We are a short drive to the Blue Ridge Parkway and an hour or so to Boone for great hiking and other outdoor activities. We also have Hanging Rock State Park and Pilot Mountain just up the highway for an even closer day trip. The city itself is also quite charming. It feels like a really big town more than a small/mid sized city.

We don't have all the amenities of a large city, but we have several larger cities within 30-90 minutes away. Greensboro has a great international airport only 25-30 minutes away, and you also have easy access to Charlotte or Raleigh.

As for crime, it isn't that bad in most areas. Do your due diligence in researching neighborhood ls before you move. Generally the west side is fine. I'd also recommend looking at Lewisville/Clemmons/Pffaftown areas.

Hope you enjoy this town as much as I do. Welcome!

What advice would you give to someone who is moving to Winston Salem, NC?

I have lived in Winston-Salem for almost six years now. I can tell you that it's the most historical place ever to visit. It's full of culture. The famous Krispy Kreme was founded there; you can go to old Salem to visit the doughnut store where it all started. R.J. Reynolds tobacco company was founded here too. If you love history and historical places, you will love Winston-Salem

If you are more of entrepreneur person, there is a place call venture cafe were like-mind people go to meet up. I have been there a couple of times, and it's very friendly and welcoming.

Overall Winston Salem is a beautiful place to live full of friendly people to meet. If you ever decided to move here, you would not want to leave. From great places to eat to a nightlife full of culture, you will not run out of things to do.

What advice would you give to someone who is moving to Winston Salem, NC?

I came to an almost sleepy town in 1973. Dramatic change occured over the last 45 years!

I love to drive each morning through our different neighborhoods to see, even in the poorer sections of town, the well-kept front yards and the variety of architecture and trim. Around the bottom of downtown the houses are different from the beautiful homes in the West End.

The town was called bucolic by the departing chief of Nabisco. It was supposed to be a slam on us. I wore it with pride.

Winston was the second largest town in NC when I came. The home of Reynolds tobacco, Hanes, Bowman Grey School of Medicine ( now called Wake Forest School of Medicine.

Winston-Salem State University is a gem. I taught a BGSM summer program for minority premedical student. It was truly enjoyable.

Salem College is the oldest women's College in the USA. one of their young ladies did summer research in my lab. A smart woman.

The countryside is just beautiful to drive through in the early mornings just before rush hour begins.

I think I am telling you that W-S is a great place to have a family. Great public schools (with some exceptions), plenty of restauranrs, etc. Artbus great in downtown. NC School of the Arts in a here.

I think I made my point. I love it here. I came at the age of 30 and now I am 76. I do love Winston-Salem!!!!!!!

UPDATED…Living in Winston Salem, NC Pros and Cons