Need info about 3 towns in Maine

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My daughter is narrowing down her choices of colleges and we're looking for information about living in Orono, Brunswick or Biddeford as a college student. Some of the specifics are crime, part time jobs, entertainment and anything else that would be important to know about these places, good or bad. She decided that she did not want to be in a major city like Boston, NYC, LA or Hatrford and because of her major found schools in the towns mentioned and has always loved going to Maine for vacations and such. Any pros or cons that you can give us about these places is greatly appreciated.
 

Prepper

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How about Farmington? That's a nice little town with a well known university (UMF).
 
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Orono - Ayup, there's moose up in these parts.
Brunswick - Lots of moose, occasional attacks by zombie pets.
Biddeford - Vampires, and a Longhorn Steakhouse.
 

NHAtHeart

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My daughter is narrowing down her choices of colleges and we're looking for information about living in Orono, Brunswick or Biddeford as a college student. Some of the specifics are crime, part time jobs, entertainment and anything else that would be important to know about these places, good or bad. She decided that she did not want to be in a major city like Boston, NYC, LA or Hatrford and because of her major found schools in the towns mentioned and has always loved going to Maine for vacations and such. Any pros or cons that you can give us about these places is greatly appreciated.
If she goes to UMO I would think living in Old Town would be the best option. Easy bike commute to school, nice neighborhoods, old town kayaks are made there. I have been to Biddeford a few times, it's ok I don't know much about crime rate, same with Brunswick. If you want low crime though Farmington is probably the way to go, maybe UMPI as well :).
 
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I like the Bangor/Orono area. Only been through Brunswick once but it seems like a pleasant setting as well.
 

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Brunswick is a nice town. Of the three you listed, Brunswick is easily the nicest.

Biddeford is a shithole. If you are in the market for some meth, Biddeford is probably your best bet. Or maybe Sanford.

Orono isn't bad, but it is quite a ways up. With so much less going on, UMO is quite the college party spot.
 

knoxy

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I suspect you're looking at UNE in Biddeford. The campus location is a nice area but Biddeford itself is kind of a craphole. I've spotted some cro-mags and neanderthals there occasionally. Nowhere near as bad as old milltowns in MA though. Close to Saco, OOB, Portland, etc and not too far up.

Brunswick is nice and not too far up, but last time I spent any time at the colleges in that area it was overrun with moonbats.

Orono is a hike, ~3hrs from the NH border. Good school but not alot going on. Winters will be tougher up there, but the others are coastal so they can get pretty bad too.

I guess my recommendation would be the school in Biddeford, if it's UNE. If not living on campus, get a car and don't live/work in biddeford.
 

Zappa

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Orono isn't bad, but it is quite a ways up. With so much less going on, UMO is quite the college party spot.
My brother went to UMO in the late 80's.
He learned a thousand different things to do with a potato.
I heard many stories about going down to Wadleighs and getting PBR pounders. [laugh]
 

PennyPincher

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What about USM in Portland or Gorham? Things are around, jobs available, public bus in Portland (it's a city, for Maine). Gorham would probably make Mom and Dad comfortable. My niece actually goes to Gorham. My husband and I were married next to it (neither of us went there) and our wedding pictures were actually done on the campus.
 
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I've lived in 2 out of the 3:

-> Orono - There is a mall and restaurants in Bangor, an airport, and some other basic necessities, but I never thought there was a lot to do. UMaine is on an island (literally surrounded by rivers), and there isn't much to do in the immediate area except for college activities. Crime is essentially typical college issues - OUI, and the occasional assault, but for the most part it's a safe area. Boring, but safe. Part time jobs - I knew people who worked at the local movie theaters, restaurants, and on campus jobs.

-> Biddeford - this must be UNE, which is actually located in Biddeford Pool, which is nearly 15 minutes outside of Biddeford. It's a beautiful campus by the ocean, but there is nothing, I mean nothing there in the "non-summer" time. The city of Biddeford is an old factory town, and is really sketchy in most parts, but recently they opened up newer stores near the turnpike exit. I would guess that most non-campus jobs are based in this area, which is probably 15 - 20 minutes away from the UNE campus. Crime in Biddeford is bad for Maine standards, and is mostly drug based. I wouldn't want to live in Biddeford if I was attending UNE.

BTW, UNE also has a Portland campus which used to require travel back and forth. I also lived nearby this campus, which is an okay area, and has much more to do. I never had a problem / heard of a problem with crime in this end of Portland (near Merrill's corner).

->Brunswick - I've only visited here. It appeared nice, never lived here. Moderate city size.

I have also lived in the other towns people referred to here:

-> Farmington : There is nothing here but wilderness outside of town. The downtown area was very small, movie theater, a handful of restaurants and shops catering to a hippie college town. The people that I knew who went to UMF said that drinking and drugs were big - even for college standards. Crime here was mild, mostly college based issues. The problem with this campus is that unlike the other Maine campus, which aren't far from major (Maine standards) cities, Farmington is 1:45 hours to Portland, an hour+ from Auburn, and 1:30 hours to Bangor. Quite isolated. However, if you like skiing, they are less than an hour or so from Sugarloaf, and UMF used to offer classes at Sugarloaf.

->Gorham campus, University of Maine : I know this area as well. Very few things to do in the immediate area, but it's 25 minutes to Portland, which has all sorts of things to do. Crime here is nearly non-existent, it's a nice rural town, but for college kids I always thought there was surprisingly little. I would rather go to the Portland Campus rather than Gorham if I was going to go to college here.
 
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Many thanks to all of you, this is exactly the kind of info we're looking for. The colleges in these towns offer her major, MD, and UNE is the top contender. She is considering the schools in the other 2 towns and big part of her decision is where she'll be living. One school is 5 plus hours away from home but is still better than driving an hour or so to Boston and dealing with all of the crap that goes on there. The amount of crime on and near the college campuses in Boston is ridiculous and she's not much of a city person. She and we know that crime happens everywhere but some places are definitely better than others.
 

garandman

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Brunswick is a nice town. Of the three you listed, Brunswick is easily the nicest.

Biddeford is a shithole. If you are in the market for some meth, Biddeford is probably your best bet. Or maybe Sanford.

Orono isn't bad, but it is quite a ways up. With so much less going on, UMO is quite the college party spot.
What he said.

Largely because of Bowdoin, there are a lot of people who move to or retire to the Brunswick area to have some cultural and winter activity in a small-town setting, half an hour or so north of Portland. I have friends who live in Harpswell, Phippsburg and Georgetown for all those reasons.

Biddeford/Saco is a pretty active commercial/industrial area, but not so appealing as a place to live uniless you get out towards the coast - the Biddeford Pool area - which is $$$. They started off as mill towns.
 
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PennyPincher

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->Gorham campus, University of Maine : I know this area as well. Very few things to do in the immediate area, but it's 25 minutes to Portland, which has all sorts of things to do. Crime here is nearly non-existent, it's a nice rural town, but for college kids I always thought there was surprisingly little. I would rather go to the Portland Campus rather than Gorham if I was going to go to college here.
I don't know when you were there last but there is a bit more than there used to be. Coffee shops, diners, sub shops, larger stores (hardware, grocery, etc) all walking distance from campus and yes, it is only 20 minutes to the mall and there is a lot of other things surrounding the mall (hotels, airport, movies, every chain store and restaurant you could think of)
 
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I went to school in Boston for 9 years... the crime there around the major schools really isn't bad at all, unless you're going to Northeastern or something. It's all about making good decisions on where you spend your free time.
 
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