Retire in North Carolina ... poker wasteland?

Burke

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My wife and I have very different interests. My main hobbies are poker, some outdoor stuff like hiking and casual sports, and watching sports. She loves to travel, visit museums, and the arts. We don’t want to live in a big city, but want easy access to a city.
Just want to respond here one more time, because I'm a Virginian through-and-through and I don't often get to talk about why I love places. Big fan of NC too; half of my family is from eastern NC and I personally really like visiting OBX, Raleigh, Charlotte, Asheville, and Winston-Salem.

Live in Richmond, VA now and other than poker it fits your description big-time. There may be a poker scene (@Lil Tuna and @grebe) but haven't dedicated a lot of time to finding it. I grew up in Virginia Beach and Richmond is a way cooler city (only thing I miss a ton is the beach). Spent most of my time in undergrad around Charlottesville which is beautiful but the areas don't have nearly as much activity.

In terms of outdoor stuff, the main draw is the James River. I think Richmond is the only "major" city with class 4 rapids running through it. Lots of activities surrounding the river just next to the city. I feel like almost everyone that lives here is into outdoor activities. Not sure what casual sports means, but unfortunately (for me) Richmond probably isn't the biggest sports town. VCU and UR are the local colleges and there just aren't many professional teams around except the ones in DC (although that is only 2 hours to the north). UVA is an hour west. 1-2 hours away to the west you have great/easy hiking in the Blue Ridge Mountains and 2 hours to the east you have the ocean. Can't say much about bourbon, but there are over 30 craft breweries in Richmond - it's incredible in if you are a beer guy.

In terms of visiting museum and the arts, there are a few surprisingly good museums locally. The best one is the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. In the past few years since I have lived here I have had the opportunity to see exhibits of Edward Hopper, the terracotta army, and sunken treasures of Ancient Egypt (to name a few). Probably the bigger draw from a museum standpoint is the face that DC is just an hour north with all of its museums. Will also add that Williamsburg in an hour east - colonial Jamestown is a pretty neat trip.

I really think that Richmond is a gem that used to be hidden and now is starting to be discovered. It used to be run-over by crime 20-30 years ago (murder capital of US in 1997) but that aspect has significantly improved. Don't get me wrong there is still crime like any city, but nothing like there was. Anyway, I'm obviously biased because I live here, but I think it's a great city - not often that I get to discuss it!

In terms of Virginia weather - it can be great if you like seasons. I haven't been to Ohio, but VA summers are like walking through water most days due to the humidity. For people from here, it's no big deal cuz you get used to it. Most of my friends from the west coast absolutely hate the humidity. Winters get the occasional snow which sucks to me, but some seem to like it. Spring and Fall are really the highlights from a weather perspective. I feel that VA and NC are pretty similar in this regard. I think I'd like the climate of somewhere like Charleston, SC better from a year-round perspective.
 

grebe

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I read parts of this thread and would stay out of it, but since Burke tagged me.....

-I currently live in Richmond, which is a good city. Plenty of whatever you want and the traffic isnt bad. I MUCH prefer it to Charlotte....we have about the same weather. All the outdoors stuff you want, tbh. Great fishing, good hunting, disc golf and regular golf is pretty good. Lots of leagues for whatever sport you are into (I started playing ultimate disc by joining up in a league). We should have legal poker here within a year.
-Virginia is my 10th state of residence and do love it here. I can also talk to you about Arizona, Washington (state), North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and AZ. I also used to live in Ohio....and I would NEVER recommend living there. Sorry.
-IF family were not an issue and could live anywhere I wanted to right now, I would live in Wilmington, NC. Here's why: It's a college town, so there is a touch of refinery to it (nice restaurants, breweries, coffee, art and shit ). It's not a big city, but it is a city and doesnt have the urban sprawl that Richmond and Charlotte have. It is surrounded by water, and plenty of great fishing with some pretty ok hunting as well. It's the most consistent surfing spot on the East Coast outside Florida. It doesnt get snow or ice much....maybe a hurricane a year. Year round weather is great. Golfing is world class in this area. You are an hour or so away from Myrtle Beach, but any other direction is pretty rural. 2 hours to Raleigh-Durham if you want the bigger city life. A stark negative would be you are nowhere near legal poker.

-Another really cool place I would look into for retirement (and would be better for poker) would be some smaller cities in AZ, like Flagstaff or Tucson.

If you want to talk about anywhere that I have lived, send me a message, I'll give you my number.
 

Jeff

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I'm starting this thought process too...

Winter = yellow (beach)...really focus on Texas or Florida
Summer = red (lake)...not Oklahoma, but SouthernMO/Northern AR east to inland N and S Carolina.

Either way, acceptably warm year round.

Screen Shot 2021-02-22 at 4.40.09 PM.jpg
 

k9dr

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Definitely not the Sarasota/Bradenton area - I like my home game just the way it is.

Seriously though, it is a great place to live with lots of casino and home poker with outdoor activities too. You get used to the heat and humidity, and we have something called air conditioning.
 

Hornet

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Definitely not the Sarasota/Bradenton area - I like my home game just the way it is.

Seriously though, it is a great place to live with lots of casino and home poker with outdoor activities too. You get used to the heat and humidity, and we have something called air conditioning.
Definitely warming up to the idea of Sarasota/Bradenton based on all the good things I’ve heard.
 

ConsensualPresidency

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If poker is important to you, Virginia and North Carolina would be at the bottom of my list (see the What's Missing Here thread where @brains613 game got busted for seemingly no reason, then got his guns stolen by the cops - https://www.pokerchipforum.com/threads/whats-missing-here.47713/ )
So this is relevant to my current dilemma of whether to move across the river from DC to VA.

I looked at that 19 page train wreck of a thread, does anyone have a tl;dr on the legality of non-raked home games in Virginia?

My understanding is they are illegal in DC and MD, but legal in VA. This is the only reason I’d be moving there.

Hoping this isn’t viewed as a thread jack, will delete if anyone objects
 

Nanook

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Definitely warming up to the idea of Sarasota/Bradenton based on all the good things I’ve heard.
I have spent a lot of time in just about all parts of fl and am considering different places to retire as well. I really like the Tampa - Sarasota area. I am not a fan of the Atlantic side or Miami or the keys. Actually, the panhandle is nice too, but it is quite a bit cooler in Jan and Feb. Still nice, but 10 degrees colder than ft meyers. The panhandle is a little cheaper if that matters to you
 

RainmanTrail

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I looked at that 19 page train wreck of a thread, does anyone have a tl;dr on the legality of non-raked home games in Virginia?

AFAIK non raked home games are legal, raked home games are illegal, in MD. VA does not allow any form of tipping or rake either

Yes, that thread is a trainwreck, but there are some useful tidbits of information from it. One is that while unraked home games are technically allowed, they are not allowed to be held "regularly", and are not allowed to be run by someone who can be viewed as the "organizer" of the games. In other words, no, they're not legal, because every game has an organizer, and most games with going to are at least semi regular.

Brains613 contends that his game was never raked, and there were a few witnesses who have played in his games that attest to this. Yet his game was still raided by the cops.

DMack maintains that there must be more to the story and that the cops wouldn't do such a thing if they didn't think something else was going on as well (e.g., drug dealing or money laundering), but he doesn't live in Virginia. However, he does know a lot about cops.

Who knows why it was busted. But the charges brought against Brains613 were for running an illegal poker game, and the charges brought against the players were for playing in an illegal game. Everyone says it was not raked and never has been.
 
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B.C.

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Always thought the first consideration in retirement should be Health Care followed by preferred climate and access to local amenities.

This article is a couple of years old now, but ranks all 50 states by some of these metrics:

Best States to Retire Ranked

Colorado would be my choice.
 

ConsensualPresidency

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Yes, that thread is a trainwreck, but there are some useful tidbits of information from it. One is that while unraked home games are technically allowed, they are not allowed to be held "regularly", and are not allowed to be run by someone who can be viewed as the "organizer" of the games. In other words, no, they're not legal, because every game has an organizer, and most games with going to are at least semi regular.

Brains613 contends that his game was never raked, and there were a few witnesses who have played in his games that attest to this. Yet his game was still raided by the cops.

DMack maintains that there must be more to the story and that the cops wouldn't do such a thing if they didn't think something else was going on as well (e.g., drug dealing or money laundering), but he doesn't live in Virginia. However, he does know a lot about cops.

Who knows why it was busted. But the charges brought against Brains613 were for running an illegal poker game, and the charges brought against the players were for playing in an illegal game. Everyone says it was not raked and never has been.
Thank you very much for the detailed explanation.
 

Schmendr1ck

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No state income tax and lower cost of living.
Same for Florida - no state income tax, reasonable property taxes and cost of living.

I just worry a bit about finding (or starting) a good home game.
This is a worry no matter where you move, though in some states with stricter laws it's a bit more of a worry.

You have to worry about hurricanes and severe storms there and in the Carolinas. Gators in Florida.
Pshaw. As other Floridians have attested, gators are a non-issue unless you're an FSU fan.

And you do have to pay attention to the weather during hurricane season - June to November. But in thirty years, I've never had to do more than put up shutters/plywood and spend a few hours in the house waiting for the storm to pass. And even then, only a small handful of times. It's really a non-issue.

So where do I go for retirement if I already live there
Move to Ohio or New York and drive slowly in the left lane with your turn signal on all the time.
 
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My wife and I are looking at retirement destinations. Right now, our top two choices are North Carolina and Virginia.

North Carolina has a lot to offer, but the poker seems limited. Cherokee casino and not much else I can see. Is anyone aware of good games in the area?

Obviously Florida is an option and has plenty of poker, but we’ve eliminated it for other reasons. Certainly open to other suggestions.
Wherever you choose, VA or NC, I suspect I might know somebody that can fill your poker needs. NCs a bit of a drive, but once a month, with a guest bedroom to recoup in, the drive wouldn't be too unbearable. :)
 

grebe

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So this is relevant to my current dilemma of whether to move across the river from DC to VA.

I looked at that 19 page train wreck of a thread, does anyone have a tl;dr on the legality of non-raked home games in Virginia?

My understanding is they are illegal in DC and MD, but legal in VA. This is the only reason I’d be moving there.

Hoping this isn’t viewed as a thread jack, will delete if anyone objects
There is more to that story than made the thread. Virginia cops DO NOT care about poker games until they have to.

There are games that have been running around here for years...both raked and unraked. They are weekly/biweekly games that openly advertise on the facebooks. They get away with it because they are only doing poker. When you start to branch out, that's when the law takes an interest.
 

RainmanTrail

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There is more to that story than made the thread. Virginia cops DO NOT care about poker games until they have to.
Do you know more info than what was posted, or are you just speculating based on your own experiences in VA? It was a pretty wild thread. To our knowledge he was never charged with anything other than just running a poker game, and he got his chips back in the end (and most of his guns - sans the ones that were "lost"/stolen).
 

grebe

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Do you know more info than what was posted, or are you just speculating based on your own experiences in VA? It was a pretty wild thread. To our knowledge he was never charged with anything other than just running a poker game, and he got his chips back in the end (and most of his guns - sans the ones that were "lost"/stolen).
Not commenting on that, either here or there. Here is what I can state as fact: poker games that are busted in VA are EXTREMELY rare.
 

Poker Zombie

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Middle Tennessee is my retirement plan. I keep the door open to options, but so fat this place is the tops.
  • Warm, but not too hot. Roughly 10 degrees warmer than Detroit
  • Rural with both mid and big city proximity. It takes about 30 minutes to get to Nashville for a football or hockey game, bit houses are far enough apart that you can shoot a gun in your backyard without upsetting the neighbors.
  • Crime is low. I haven't locked the doors at night in roughly 15 years, and it is not uncommon for me to leave the house without "locking up". I do have a neighbor that shoots a gun in his backyard though, so if you get any ideas...
Interesting thread @Hornet David!

It seems we have a few things in common in this specific regard, man. Although it will be quite a few years before we have to make the same decision, wife and I constantly talk about it.

Wife is definitely more large city centric and I, on the other hand, would like no neighbors in sight, LOL! A medium city at about 40mins to an hour is all I need I think. The wife wants Starbucks, pilates, shopping and other things at walking distance. Hard to combine both things.

I like to say my perfect summer is Florida's winter, LOL!!! Based on that, year round in FL is a no-no for me. So I've been considering NC for year round. Or maybe a split between FL and somewhere outdoorsy with a mild summer.

It will be a give and take with the wife for sure.

As far as poker goes, I can get my casino fix a couple times a year in Vegas. Prefer a nice, challenging home game with friends and I already know it will be up to me to get that going wherever I end up, LOL!!!
Take a look at Brentwood Tennessee sometime. :whistle: :whistling: It's like Bloomfield Hills, but without the income tax - and even when (if) it snows it will be in the 60s a week later.
 

ChaosRock

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Middle Tennessee is my retirement plan. I keep the door open to options, but so fat this place is the tops.
  • Warm, but not too hot. Roughly 10 degrees warmer than Detroit
  • Rural with both mid and big city proximity. It takes about 30 minutes to get to Nashville for a football or hockey game, bit houses are far enough apart that you can shoot a gun in your backyard without upsetting the neighbors.
  • Crime is low. I haven't locked the doors at night in roughly 15 years, and it is not uncommon for me to leave the house without "locking up". I do have a neighbor that shoots a gun in his backyard though, so if you get any ideas...

Take a look at Brentwood Tennessee sometime. :whistle: :whistling: It's like Bloomfield Hills, but without the income tax - and even when (if) it snows it will be in the 60s a week later.

I definitely need to bring the wife to TN, KY, the Carolinas and other places we might consider for a future home. She hasn’t even been to the Tampa area yet.

Also considering WY, MT and ID for the warm months but it will be hard to convince Sigal.

MI (especially Up North) for the summer is definitely an option for me but she is not as enthused with the mitten state as I am, LOL!!!

Thanks for the suggestion MJ!
 

pltrgyst

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There is more to that story than made the thread. Virginia cops DO NOT care about poker games until they have to.

There are games that have been running around here for years...both raked and unraked. They are weekly/biweekly games that openly advertise on the facebooks. They get away with it because they are only doing poker. When you start to branch out, that's when the law takes an interest.
Exactly. My VA weekly home game was on FB and Craigslist. I was really careful about the rake aspect -- didn't ever allow players to chip in toward food and drink. Half the players in my game were LEOs -- city, state, and federal -- never a peep.
 

pltrgyst

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-IF family were not an issue and could live anywhere I wanted to right now, I would live in Wilmington, NC. Here's why: It's a college town, so there is a touch of refinery to it (nice restaurants, breweries, coffee, art and shit ). It's not a big city, but it is a city and doesnt have the urban sprawl that Richmond and Charlotte have. It is surrounded by water, and plenty of great fishing with some pretty ok hunting as well. It's the most consistent surfing spot on the East Coast outside Florida. It doesnt get snow or ice much....maybe a hurricane a year. Year round weather is great. Golfing is world class in this area. You are an hour or so away from Myrtle Beach, but any other direction is pretty rural. 2 hours to Raleigh-Durham if you want the bigger city life...
Hah! I happened to be playing tennis this morning with a neighbor and tennis friend who moved here from Wilmington with his wife about three years ago. They lived up there about ten years, and were very active in an assortment of cultural activities (she's a concert pianist and one-woman-show performer).

After he was through laughing, he offered to give you the straight poop on the weather in Wilmington compared to Sarasota... :cool He said there's nothing they miss about NC (or, as we referred to it when we lived in SC, "the other Carolina").

And politically, NC has become the new Georgia. Who needs that kind of stress... o_O
 
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Nuhockey

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It’s definitely on the list, but I think our preference right now is somewhere we could be year round.
Las Vegas area Possibly? My parents had a place in Henderson, NV which is about 10 minutes from Vegas. Pretty awesome IMO. Close enough to a local casino as their place was across from the Green Valley Ranch and it was far enough from the strip not be touristy. The house prices are good in Henderson. You'll have plenty of good food options in the area and in Vegas itself. One of my ideas was to move to Henderson area and get an IT job at one of the Casinos, but the wife shot that down immediately. She said the Casino's would be to close for me. Where we live in NJ Atlantic City and casinos in PA are far enough where I can't get to them all the time.
 

Anthony Martino

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Australia is a great place to be. One of the nicest beaches I went to in the late 90's was Byron Bay along the Eastern Coast of Australia, While I only went to Australia for 2 weeks it was a fun place to visit and everyone was nice.

Except that EVERYTHING IN AUSTRALIA IS POISONOUS AND TRYING TO KILL YOU!

usa usa usa!
 
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