Saturday, August 13, 2011

Why Are You Moving to Daybreak?

I've been buried with questions!
Underneath it all, I've got an answer.

Our new digs in Garden Park at Daybreak, Utah

Ever since I announced "We're moving," I've been asked

Let me tell you. Daybreak is a planned community below the Oquirrh Mountains in the southwest corner of Salt Lake Valley. It's four thousand acres and will eventually have 20,000 homes—it's already a thriving village after just a few years, and growing like crazy.

Houses of different design, price range, size all mingle together—like neighbors!

There are biking and hiking trails, a town square with shops and restaurants, and over a dozen parks, all built around a lake. Residents can use sailboats and canoes for free, fish and play on the beach; we can rent garden plots for $35 a season.

From our house everything is within walking distance: the TRAX Station (our local public transit) is a block away; there's a hospital, bakery, hair salon, florist and dry cleaners five minutes down the street. Plus a major shopping center just a mile away (movie theater, grocery store, Office Max and all the regulars—after ten restaurants I stopped counting.)

Oquirrh Lake in Daybreak

So what's Garden Park?

Garden Park is a 55+ neighborhood within Daybreak, "for grownups," the ad says. The idea is we've worked hard and now it's time to say no to yardwork, stairs and maintenance, and yes to anything we want!

Garden Club

The clubhouse is at the end of our street and is exclusive to the Garden Park residents. It's gorgeous, with a huge kitchen designed for parties, receptions and cooking classes. The work-out room offers aerobics, yoga and dance classes, personal trainers, treadmills, weights, etc.

(Plus a pool and hot tub.)

We were part of a focus group the other day, and Randy, (the guy focusing in on us) had us do an activity that couples or families could also use to help decide where to move.

How Much Would You Pay?
We listed things that were important to us about where we want to live: transportation, space, floor plan, neighborhood, yard, architecture, etc. and he wrote them on ten separate pieces of paper, which he spread out on the table. We were each given $100 in small bills (fake money, unfortunately) and we divided it up among the categories. It helped us see what matters most to us. I put my money on stability of Ivory Homes (the builder,) square footage (little but big enough,) and small town feel.

In reality, none of the many reasons I've listed is why we're moving to Garden Park in Daybreak. They are all perks of our decision. The real reason is the spirit of the place.

Back in 1970 my dad, a man of vision (he was an eye doctor) invested in some real estate and sold it quickly for a profit. He was anxious to repeat the experience, so he bought some more land and hired his brand new son-in-law (Dee) to help him develop and sell it. It was next to the Oquirrh Mountains. Dee got to know every well-wisher (people who search for wells) and sheep rancher for miles around—they were the folks who owned the land.

At the foot of the mountains is the Bingham Copper Mine, and there were several ghost towns (Lark, Copperton, Ragtown) where the miners had lived. Dee loves ghosts, and got to know them all. (Have you heard of Ivy Baker Priest, the humble copper miner's daughter from Bingham Canyon who became President Eisenhower's U.S. Treasurer from 1952 to 1960?)

Anyway. This summer our life was turned upside down and we decided it was time for a new chapter, a change of scenery, so we took a thirty-five minute drive to see what had happened out west. The surface had changed, but we could feel our roots—there was still a spirit of hope, vision, history. We felt energized when Lane (our great realtor) showed us through a few houses—it was like coming home.

Immediately I googled Daybreak, looking for bloggers who could give me the real scoop on the place. The official website came up with (interesting) sales-pitch-type-jargon, and a few private posts from 2009, but nothing current from a real, local Daybreaker. I had to do my research the old-fashioned way: by telephone, car and on foot.

I need a blog about Garden Park! There's stuff I need to know: Who's moving in? Is there a book club? Can anyone recommend a handyman? Who did your drapes?

I'd love to hear from any of you who live (or know someone who lives) in my new neighborhood.
My spirits are soaring because I'm moving to Daybreak!

(Now, maybe I'll be the one who pops up on Google!)


kenju said...

It sounds great and I know you will enjoy it - once you're over the hassle of moving. We need to do that too, but it will take dynamite to roust my husband out of here.

Diane said...

It sounds ideal. I've been out there, but don't know the area that well. My niece teaches at one of the elementary schools out there.

Mrs. Organic said...

I love that place. If I could, I'd move there in a heartbeat. Enjoy!

marta said...

this is such an exciting time for you! i've only heard amazing things about daybreak, perhaps we'll have to get out there and hunt around ourselves. i loved the community garden patches and the awesome lake too! thanks for doing all the research. xo.

mama jo said...

looks like it will be amazing!

The Grandmother Here said...

Our daughter lives in Herriman which is close to Daybreak. We were there last Saturday for a Herriman Arts Council play at Butterfield Park. First rate facility. The play was very well done. Great costumes, lighting, orchestra! Even the restroom tp was quality. If Daybreak does things as well as Herriman does, you'll have a great experience.

allison said...

wow. the next question is, why aren't I moving to daybreak? it sounds pretty wonderful..

Polly said...

i can't wait to see your new home. i know it will be beautiful. your style is unmistakable. how much fun to start with bare rooms! i love to arrange furniture!

Olive's Granddaughter said...

My fear of Daybreak is a common one in Salt Lake---Westsidephobia. I love Daybreak (esp. Garden Park). We looked at homes there several times. But it is so faaaaarrrrr away from the Eastside. Now that Trax is going to be there, it will help a lot. I'm really tired of Holladay. (Did I say that?)

Susan Adcox said...

I don't know Daybreak, but I love the idea of not doing yardwork and of having everything close by, along with ways to enjoy nature and good workout facilities--it sounds heavenly!