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retire

Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!

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Retire in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania?

Beautiful Jim Thorpe, known as the "Switzerland of America," is nestled along the Leigh Gorge's Lehigh River in eastern Pennsylvania's scenic Pocono Mountains. It is a cute, touristy little village that seems to enchant just about everyone.

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The town started out as Mauch Chunk, a Native American term for "sleeping bear." The name changed in 1953 when the widow of renowned athlete Jim Thorpe convinced the struggling coal hamlet to buy her husband's remains and rename the town in his honor. These days, the legacy of Jim Thorpe draws tourists from around the region, but so does the abundant outdoor recreation. Whitewater rafting, in particular, is top notch. And the town's extraordinary Victorian architecture, a compact mix of Gothic Revival, Second Empire, Queen Anne, Richardsonian Romanesque, Shingle and more, creates a wonderfully elegant cityscape. Shopping is mostly of the specialty type, but there is a general store for basic supplies.

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Many in-town homes date from the 1800s, while more contemporary dwellings, including ranch ramblers and cabins, are nestled in the surrounding forested hills.

Population:  4,600 (city proper)

Age 45 or Better:  41% 

Cost of Living:  23% below the national average

Median Home Price: $225,000

Climate:    Summer temperatures are in the 70s and 80s, and winter temperatures in the teens, 20s and 30s. On average, the area receives 45 inches of rain and 30 inches of snow every year. Autumn is particularly spectacular.

At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients?   No, but Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital, about 10 miles away in Lehighton, accepts Medicare patients.

At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission?    No, but Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital, about 10 miles away in Lehighton, is accredited.

Crime Rate:  Below the national average

Public Library:    Yes

Public Transit:   Carbon County Community Transit offers door to door rides Monday through Friday. The service requires advance reservations and is limited.

Political Leanings:   Conservative

College Educated:   28%

Is Pennsylvania Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement?    Yes

Cons:    Newcomers sometimes have trouble fitting in at first. The town has lost 2% of its population during the last decade.

Notes:   Home prices have increased by 19% during the last year. New York City is about two hours away and Philadelphia is about 90 minutes away.

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Recommended as a Retirement Spot?    Yes, although the population loss is something to keep in mind.

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Pennsylvania:

Established by William Penn as a sanctuary for Quakers, the Keystone State was the site of two Continental Congresses. The Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution became products of the second congress in 1775. Pennsylvania also played a decisive role in the American Civil War. The Battle of Gettysburg gave General Meade with a key win and put an end to the South's Northern Invasion.

The Appalachian mountains are Pennsylvania's backbone. The state has 140 miles of shoreline along Lake Erie and the Delaware Estuary. Five regions - the Allegheny Plateau, the Ridge and Valley, the Atlantic Coastal Plain, the Piedmont, and the Erie Plain - help provide a diversity of landscape and climate. Although Philadelphia, the state's most populous city, may experience some subtropical temperatures, the rest of the state can experience cold winters.

Pennsylvania's economy is one of the largest in the country and the world. It's a leading coal producer and the only state to mine anthracite. Fortune 500 companies based in Pittsburgh include U.S. Steel, PPG Industries, and H.J. Heinz. Locomotives for GE Transportation Systems are assembled in Erie. Mushrooms, apples, and Christmas trees are a few of the state's agricultural products.

Although it was the second state to enter the Union on December 12, 1787, Pennsylvania has recorded a large list of firsts. Betsy Ross made the first American flag in Philadelphia. Philadelphia is also the birthplace of the nation's first zoo. Titusville claims the world's first oil well.

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