Serbs in Cincinnati?
November 1, 2007 5:37 AM   Subscribe

Is there a Serbian population of any size in Cincinnati?

I may have a job offer in Cincinnati soon; my wife is from Belgrade, and one of the considerations we'd want to look at is whether there is a (hopefully) active Serbian/former Yugoslavian population there. Quick google searches didn't show much, so I turn to the Hive...

Hvala and thanks!
posted by dyerfr to Society & Culture (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The city of Chicago is considered to be the second largest Serb-populated city in the World.
posted by Carol Anne at 5:42 AM on November 1, 2007

I spent some time living just outside of Cincinnati, but I don't recall hearing about or seeing any sizable Serbian population there. Note that Chicago is pretty far away from Cincinnati, in case you're not familiar with the American Midwest.
posted by the dief at 6:03 AM on November 1, 2007

Hi Dyerfr!

I currently live in Cincinnati and did a little snooping this morning. There is a Serbian Orthodox Church here in town...that may be a good source of info on Serbian areas, eats and groups in the Queen City. Sadly, they don't have a website.... but here's the analog info:

St. George Serbian Orthodox Church
5830 Glenview Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45224, Ohio, U.S.A.
Phone: (513) 542 4452

Good luck in the move!
posted by MeetCleaverTheatre at 6:05 AM on November 1, 2007

I can't really think of any big areas with a Serbian population. There are some german populations on the outskirts, but nothing I can think of in the way of large and active populations like the one you mention looking for. Here's some census stats for 2006. Where are the other options? What location (generally) is the job in? There are many neighborhoods in the area that have general descriptions. None come to mind that fit what you're looking for, but if you know the general area the position is in, there are generalized descriptions that can be given.

I don't know where you are now, but Cincy is ... well...old fashioned and behind the times, to put it as nice as I can. Here's a sports-tinged article about it that begins to capture some of the essence of the town. And yes, Chicago is not anywhere near Cincy. If you have options, I'd suggest looking at those first. No offense to MeetCleaverTheatre or anybody who is currently living in that god forsaken rathole.
posted by cashman at 6:07 AM on November 1, 2007

Cincy is a bizarre town in a bizarre way, so a bizarre story about it is kind of fitting. Louisville doesn't really compete with Cincy that I ever heard of. I'm glad you're enjoying your stay, LakesideOrion. I can't think of any active populations like dyerfr is looking for. Hyde Park? Pleasant Ridge? Kenwood? West Chester? College Hill? Tri-County? dyerfr doesn't have to live in the area directly in the shadow of the job, but it would help to know if it's up by Forest Park or if it's down by Proctor & Gamble.

dyerfr, if it's a company downtown like P&G or one of the buildings around Fountain Square, realize that you should investigate the population of Northern Kentucky too. There might be populations like that there. If you have a job where you'll be traveling a lot, that will also put you closer to CVG (the Cincinnati, Ohio airport which is in Kentucky. Told you this place is strange.)
posted by cashman at 7:46 AM on November 1, 2007

Welcome to the city. There is weirdness everywhere. I think the aforementioned church is a good suggestion. You might also check with the Univ. of Cincinnati to see if they have Serbian or Slavic student associations.

I know it doesn't help from the standpoint of an existing community, but with P&G as a major employer in the region, there are always people from around the world here on extended assignments. You just have to join some groups that get the international folks together on a regular basis.
posted by mmascolino at 8:13 AM on November 1, 2007

st. louis has a serbian and bosnian community, but that's six hours away.
posted by thinkingwoman at 1:45 PM on November 1, 2007

There's not much of a Serbian community in Cincinnati; at least not of Serbo-Croatian-speaking recent immigrants. (Most of the Serbs there are descendents of immigrants from a few generations ago and thus aren't really any more "Serbian" than any other American.) There are definitely *some* folks from the former Yugoslavia around, but not so many as to form a really active community.

It's a bit odd that Cincinnati is so lacking in Yugoslavs, considering that Chicago, Kansas City, St Louis, plus many places in Ohio (aside from Cincinnati!), Michigan, Indiana and Iowa all have pretty big communities. In Chicago and a few other cities, many recent Serbian immigrants brought with them a lot of the bizarre nationalistic rhetoric and ideology that helped kill lots of people back home - this didn't sit well with older, more-established Serbian-American communities and thus a sort of divide was created. (The Wikipedia link above alludes to this, though to be fair it probably had more to do with Krajina or Bosnian Serbs than individuals from Beograd.) From my own experience, I've found that in places with smaller populations of Yugoslavs, there's a greater chance of friendliness between Serb, Croat and Bosnian Muslim immigrants, so bear that in mind. (I'm from Sarajevo.)

I don't know how long you've been married or how long your wife's been here, and this is totally unsolicited advice, but I've found that my life is happier and I've been more successful in many ways (job, personal life, language skills, "fitting in") because I've distanced myself from my immigrant peers who cling too strongly to the old place and the community. Many of those who did have had a harder time facing their new life in America. So a move away from a strong community for a few years can have some rewards, too.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 3:15 PM on November 1, 2007

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