Living—and Building— The Legend
An affordable place to be with other young families. By Judy Dahl
It’s no exaggeration to say that Chris Schmidt is among the foremost experts on the lots, homes and lifestyle of The Legend at Bergamont. He has lifelong knowledge of the area, having grown up in the village of Oregon and attended its schools. In 2004 he moved to the Bergamont neighborhood with his wife and two young children, and in 2006 the Schmidts moved from the un-gated
portion of the community to the gated Bergamont Estates area, one of the first 10 families to build there.
Schmidt’s company, Classic Homes of Madison, LLC, has grown with the neighborhood. He’s the person to call if you’re interested in a community made up mostly of young families, its spacious lots adjacent to an 18-hole championship golf course, with a clubhouse, two pools—even a water park—close to excellent schools and just a short drive from downtown Madison. He’ll be happy to show you around the lots on which his company can build your dream home.
“I’m living the life, so I can answer more of your questions than someone who isn’t,” says Schmidt. “I know who your neighbors will be if you join us out here, and I’ll introduce you—we have a lot of neighborhood parties.”
You make a lot of friends
The demographic drawn to The Legend at Bergamont is mostly young families with kids, Schmidt reports. Oregon’s excellent schools are just a short school bus ride away, or a seven-minute drive if, like the Schmidts, you drop your kids off.
“It’s a tight-knit, active community of
people who like to relax and enjoy the amenities—golf, the water park—you feel like you’re on vacation living here,” says Schmidt. “The entire family has something to do: parents golf and the kids play in the pool.”
He really appreciates the camaraderie. “You make a lot of friends and there’s always someone to golf with,” he says. “You don’t have to round people up and drive to the golf course; you walk across your yard and golf with your neighbors. Often you golf, and then someone cooks out afterward, or you meet at the pool.”
Golf, the water park and more
The Legend at Bergamont’s topnotch course is perhaps the community’s best-known amenity. Two-time U.S. Open winner Andy North designed it, and Golf Digest
designated it among the top 10 new courses in 2006. “But it’s also the water park and the whole complex; you don’t have to be a golfer to enjoy yourself here,” says Schmidt.
It’s great to have a clubhouse with restaurants in your backyard, he notes. “They offer movie nights where you can grab dinner with friends while your kids watch a movie downstairs, supervised. The Legend’s goal is to foster lifelong relationships—new people get connected very quickly.”
The club’s many activities help. There are holiday parties, kids’ craft nights, pool
parties, barbeque parties, live music nights, and golf events such as Women’s and Men’s Season Kick-offs, Open Play Two-Man Best Ball, Wine & 9 Couples and Guest Night One Best Ball Foursome. The club is currently semi-private, but is moving toward a fully private club and course.
“That will be nice for the residents,” says Schmidt. “It won’t get crowded, and because the golfers live out here, you know they’re interested in keeping it nice. One benefit of being a member here is that you automatically become a member of two Legend clubs near Milwaukee and you can play their courses.”
The community’s activities and amenities have become such a large part of the Schmidts’ leisure time that they take fewer trips than they might otherwise. “On a typical summer weekend day we might golf nine holes with friends, then go up to the water park, then later the kids swim and we have a drink,” he says.
Minutes from downtown Madison
When selling homes at The Legend at Bergamont, Schmidt runs into two misconceptions. “A lot of people think Oregon is so far from Madison, but it’s really a 10-minute drive, no farther than Waunakee or Verona,” he says. “My wife works downtown and drives to work in 15 minutes. Also, people think the neighborhood is geared toward older people, and that their kids won’t have anyone to play with, but 90 percent of my clients are young families.”
There are a variety of lots available at The Legend at Bergamont, with several phases of development still to come. Currently, on the non-gated side, lots are mostly around 13,000 square feet. On the gated side lots are a half acre or larger.
“Where I am, in the first phase of the gated side, we’re surrounded by the course,” says Schmidt. “If you don’t live on the course, it’s across the street. The scenery is unbelievable—the sunsets, the beautiful clubhouse with the waterfall cascading down, the rolling hills and the mature trees throughout.”
While some of the homes in the community are quite large, in the $1 million to $2
million range, there are also some in the $500,000 range. “It’s perfect for a young family,” Schmidt enthuses. “People are shocked at how affordable it is compared to any other area neighborhood of this style. It’s an affordable place to be with other young families.” l
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