Articles

Results from the Survey of Rural Challenges

Every other year we send out a survey of Rural Challenges. We expected Covid 19 to lead in challenges this year, however we were surprised!  Long-term local rural challenges outweighed the impact of COVID-19. We found that rural community stories are not what the media is telling everyone. Common themes in media coverage and policy…

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Housing: Do you need a developer for second story housing?

Not every second story housing project is  possible by a bank loaning someone the money to build or rehab. Webster City, Iowa has several buildings downtown with second story spaces. Three of those second stories are now housing. It wasn’t a developer that came in and bought the buildings and fixed them up. That’s a…

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Does your town stay open late?

What if you told the story that your town is one that stays open late?  You’d probably be telling the truth, even though many of your downtown stores close at 5. Make a list of all the businesses that stay open late. Restaurants Convenience Store Gas Station Salons Gyms Pharmacies Big Boxes (ones still open…

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Who are your newcomers?

I was in Mt. Ayr, Iowa and had the opportunity to meet with a group of people who had moved back to this small town of 2,500. They brought with them technology, a large network of professional friends and their families. It’s not a beach town, there’s no mountains and people don’t go there to…

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Empty Lots

Have you ever been to a small town without empty lots? Me neither. They don’t have to stay empty either! This is one of my favorite ideas – Create an outdoor museum!  Jerry Johnson, from JLJ Design Studio in Richardson, Texas, came up with an idea of a rusted tractor graveyard, but you could make almost any kind…

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Graphics for Shopping Local

These graphics were provided by Rural Kind – and we are happy to share them!

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Survey of Rural Challenges 2020/21

The Survey of Rural Challenges is open for rural and small town people to answer. www.saveyour.town/survey2020  This is not a survey about Covid 19, this survey is different. Becky McCray and Deb Brown, co founders of SaveYour.Town have been asking for and listening to rural challenges since 2015. “We use the results to create practical…

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Trail Art

What’s happening in Carlisle, Iowa? Lorin Ditzler from Warren County Hometown sent us this message.  This is in Carlisle IA, where there is a well-used regional trail that ends about 1/3 of a mile from the downtown. We wanted to encourage trail users to continue past the end of the trail and visit our downtown!…

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#140ConfLive

The 140 Character Conferences were events hosted in New York, LA, Des Moines and Hutchinson, KS. Speakers talked for 10 minutes only. Each event had a theme. They were all live events, and I was able to speak at several, host some and help in New York City with hosting. Jeff Pulver explores communication, and…

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JP Loves Cotton

Zoom Recommendation First I took advantage of Zoom.us and attended a webinar to learn more about how to use their product. We use Zoom for our videos and we do love it. This is not a product review, it’s a definite recommendation though. I’m not being paid for it either. More and more people are…

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