East Meets West: Moving to Mirrormont

By Jennifer Schori

What happens when you mix East Coast reticence with the West Coast vibe? Well, I’m still working on that one.

My husband and I moved here to Mirrormont this summer from semi-rural southern New Jersey, carting our two reluctant children (ages 11 and 13), a dog, two cats, and my beloved citrus trees. Ian, the husband, is English born and bred. I am originally from Southern California—before they started calling it SoCal—but lived most of my life in Philadelphia. Our children, on the other hand, have not known much else than the very tight-knit, tiny community we lived in.

The change has been dramatic, yet eye-opening, for our children. From a one-traffic-light town to a town of, well, TRAFFIC, and a Pre-K through 8th grade of 400 students to a school where each grade has at least 400 students, we have had quite some adjustments to make. Yet, we all seem to be making those adjustments.

Determined to immerse myself in our new environment, perhaps out of fear of being too isolated, I hopped on board the MCA train and have had the incredible surprise and pleasure of seeing just how amazing Mirrormont is.

We are a diverse group of individuals and families here and the face of Mirrormont has been evolving since its inception in the 1960s. It’s been fascinating to talk to recent transplants along with folks who have been living here for greater than 20 years. Just recently I spoke with a gentleman on his daily walk who shared his experiences of the many, many changes that have taken place since he moved here years ago. And, yes, the influx of people and the flow (or lack, thereof) of traffic are big points. Still, there are huge draws to this beautiful area and a new generation of residents continues to move in.

So, I went ahead and emailed Mirrormont’s newest residents to see what drew them here and what strikes them most about living on Tiger Mountain.

Three things have stood out: the natural beauty, the quality of the school district, and—what surprised many—the people. Moving in to Mirrormont, it appears most incoming residents are aware of how beautiful it is and have done their research on how well the school district rates.

New residents’ first experiences once moved in, however, really stand out. “It delights me to stop and chat with people here. Everyone seems grateful and happy to be living in this spectacular place. Our neighbor next door took us on a hike last weekend to a local waterfall,” new resident, Dori Fagan, shared. “When we first moved in, all of our neighbors stopped by to introduce themselves. One of our neighbors actually baked us homemade bread!” exclaimed Jasmine Dailida. “We felt so welcomed as soon as we moved in,” Kristin Kinder said.

And I feel the same way. So what happens when you mix East and West—and everything in between? You get a real Community.