So the moving truck is full, your car has a shiny new license plate, and you’ve already done your Yelp research on the best delivery pizza in your new neighborhood. You may think you have moving to Massachusetts all figured out, but here are a few things about your new home that may surprise you.
1. Degrees....degrees as far as the eyes can see.
In Boston, it might not be possible to throw a rock without hitting a PhD. With some of the top universities in the country right in our backyard, we have some pretty big brains around these parts and the credentials to prove it.
2. The weather can't make up its mind.
Thirty degrees and snowing in the morning, sixty degrees and sunny by noon. If you live in Massachusetts, you know that the weather can be incredibly fickle.
3. We take our teams seriously.
The Patriots, The Red Sox, The Bruins. Pretty much our holy trinity. You might as well have a sports jersey mailed to your future Massachusetts address so you can put it on first thing. It might even induce your new neighbors to help you move your furniture.
4. The economy is actually looking good.
The Massachusetts economy faster than the nation in all four quarters of 2015 and is projected to grow at a rate of 3.3% over the first six months of 2016, according to the Northeastern University School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs. Despite a sluggish global economy, things in the Bay State are looking bright.
5. It's pretty. Like, really pretty.
Between the beaches, the islands, and the rural beauty of the west, Massachusetts is incredibly gorgeous. And not just during the summer. Fall is an explosion of color, spring is a fleeting but gorgeously fresh season, and winter is absolutely breathtaking.
6. Oh my God the summer traffic.
Tourism may support the local economy (especially on the Cape) but once you become a year-round resident, you will soon know the curse of summer traffic. Plan an extra twenty minutes into summer transit time.
7. Western Massachusetts.
There's more to this state than Cape Cod, Boston, and the North Shore. Western Massachusetts and the Berkshires pack some serious natural beauty. From dramatic mountain ranges to rolling farmland, western Massachusetts is worth exploration.
8. Not everyone looks like they stepped out of a Lilly Pulitzer catalogue.
Yes, we own jeans and sweatshirts. No, pastel sundresses and pastel polo shirts aren't the state-mandated uniform of Cape Cod. Though I mean....not gonna lie, there's a lot of pastel going on over there.
9. Diversity and inclusion are the rule.
Though Massachusetts is pretty much thought of as the bluest state in the nation, we actually have a broad range of political discussion and representation. No matter who you are, there's room for you here.
10. Evacuation Day is a big deal.
Observed on the same day as St. Patrick's day (also a huge deal), Evacuation Day celebrates the day that British troops withdrew from Boston after the Siege of Boston early in the American Revolution. People get really into it and you better be prepared for some shenanigans if you're sticking around the city on March 17th.
11. Unless you live by the water, you definitely will need an air conditioner.
We get some serious winter cold and hardcore summer heat. A fan is just not going to cut it, unless you're moving from Florida or something and already have crazy heat tolerance.
12. Every other building is a historical monument.
In some towns, it seems like every single bar, hotel, and park is loaded with local history. Massachusetts played a crucial role in the founding of the nation and its colorful history only grew from there. This means that if you buy a beautiful old country home, make sure you know a bit about its past. In same areas you may not be allowed to do much home improvement if the building is over 100 years old!
13. Candlepin bowling.
Skinny pins and smaller balls mean a classic New England bowling experience. While a lot of places will offer "big ball" bowling in addition to candlepin, expect your new Massachusetts friends to insist on the game they grew up with.
14. Clam chowder is made the right way.
Depending on where you're moving from, you might be used to a thin broth (Rhode Island) or a tomato-based (New York) clam chowder. Don't worry, we'll set you straight.
15. Your new best friends live here.
For real. Some of the most open-hearted, generous, and fun-loving people you'll meet are here in Massachusetts.
Moving to a new place is always a little unnerving, but rest assured: Massachusetts will definitely steal your heart.