Deb Brown and I were in the same place last week, and she twisted my arm until we planned out our SaveYour.Town webinar topics for all the way through 2019. Here’s the list along with tentative dates for the recorded lessons:
- April 6: Rural Jobs Creation Strategies (open for registration now through April 25 only)
- May 16: Embedded Community Experience (reporting from on the scene in Forest County, Pennsylvania)
- June 12: Filling Empty Buildings
- July 17: How do we retain young people? (This is a new topic for us, and we’d love to hear your stories!)
- August 7: Makers trends in rural
- September 4: Downtown After 5
- October 15: Kill Your Committees: The Secret to Finding More Volunteers
- November 9: Innovative Rural Business Models (One of my favorites, and we keep updating it)
- December 7: Building Possibility (Deb’s signature principles)
- January 11: Rural Trends for 2019 (I do love to talk trends)
- February: Including EVERYONE: Getting past conflicts between groups (including class and income differences, racial and ethic communities, and any other conflicts. Another new one for us, and we’d love to hear your stories here as well)
Where the heck did we get these topics? We listened to you. We listened with the Survey of Rural Challenges in 2015 and 2017. (Watch for our next one in 2019.) We listen every time we visit with you in your rural communities. We listen when you email us and talk to us online.
In fact, I’m listening to you now. Hit reply or comment and let me know which topics you’re dying to hear.
We also wanted to bring back your most-requested topics from our older webinar format. You have told us you love the new 2-part format with 30 minutes for the lesson, then separate time for Q&A and building community. It’s easier to fit into your lunch-and-learn type events since the lesson is shorter. So some of these are classic topics we’re updating for you.
That schedule is still tentative. Things may change when something important comes up that we really need to cover. Or our schedules blow up, and we have to figure out an alternative.
Now for a little behind the scenes, here are the topics we considered, but that didn’t make the schedule:
- No one shops in town (I’ve been writing about shop local campaigns for small towns since 2007)
- Small Town Tourism
- Recruiting new residents
- What you can do with roofless buildings (a fun classic)
- Marketing in a small town (One of Deb’s main topics)
- Dealing with the Committee of Negativity (it never really goes away, does it?)
- Idea Friendly (I’m always updating it with your feedback)
Your turn now. Tell me what you think. Do you have some thoughts about how we keep our young people rural or about how to deal with conflicts between groups in our communities? Did we leave out a critical topic you wish we would talk about? What do you think? Should one of those get promoted to our regular schedule? Tell me about it. Comment or hit reply. I’m listening.
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