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An Expat Talks about Living in Cortland, New York

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Cortland

What activities, clubs and organizations would you recommend to newcomers to help them meet others?

Dowtown businessman’s association, elks lodge, Cortland State University.

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In terms of religious, racial, economic and cultural diversity, are the people of this city or town diverse? Are they accepting of differences? Describe.

Yes. It is a town that is starting to get more diverse.

What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?

Cortland has a dozen different factories that produce smith corona typewriters, buckbee mears television apature masks, brewer tichner tools, pall trinity micro chips, among others. Mostly blue collar and small town independent owners, this community is a half way between bigger cities like Syracuse, Binghamton and within 600 miles of 2/3 of the population of the USA. Most people find jobs through the college or local government or factories.

In general, what are peoples' priorities in this city? For example, do lives revolve around work, family, socializing, sports, etc.?

The four true seasons in cortland create a cycle of life that revolves around what the weather is like. In winter, it is cold and snowy, so snowmobiling, skiing at the local mountains (Greek Peak, Song Mountain), cross country skiing, making snowmen and having snowball fights are good fun for all. This creates the need for indoor entertainment: movies, games, arts and crafts are all things that keep us busy in the winter months when it is too cold to be outside for long periods of time. In spring, the weather shifts and the bustle of getting life ready for summer has people out and about fixing their yards, cars and homes. Not too many months of good weather so you will see people doing things in spring that most parts of the country would wait until the weather was warmer. Once things warm up and summer does arrive, we play outdoor sports like lacrosse, baseball/softball and soccer. Many leagues in the area keep the parks full until september. The local college, Cortland State University is in recess so the town of 20,000 goes back to the locals and population shrinks. Things are much more quiet in summer. In fall, the magic of Upstate New York happens. Anyone who has ever lived in the Northeast knows that this is the most magical time of the year. The leaves begin to change in the last week of September and continue to share their brilliant shades of yellow, orange, red, purple and green until all are brown and the trees are naked by november. This is the best time to be in Upstate New York. A magical time. Then, winter. We have a joke: there are only two seasons in cortland: 10 months of winter and two months of really bad skiing. But I wouldn’t want to have grown up anywhere else in the world.

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If a friend of yours was thinking of moving to this city or town from far away, what other advice would you give them.

You will need a good all weather car and if you like hunting, fishing and the outdoors you will enjoy this place.

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