So you want to live in a really cool place? And you are, in some way, tied to the current place you live? Here is a quick run through of the tools we use in our initial assessments. We hope that these are helpful for you as you lean into and claim your community.
Find your group. They say it takes a village to raise a child, but it also takes a village to build a town. Look for others who are excited about some of the same things you are excited about. You need these people, for sharing ideas and the man power to make those ideas happen.
Walk through your town with fresh eyes. There are two ways that you can focus your attention:
What is great? Colorful? Inspiring? Do more of that. Elevate those things. Showcase them. Is there a theater that shows your favorite movies? A favorite mural? A festival that is the pride of your town?
What is hard to read? Ugly? Neglected? Fix this with intention. Spend some time rethinking how it could be better. Have you ever tried to find your downtown from getting off the closest interstate exit by only using signs to direct you? Can you make your way without getting lost? Is there a sad/empty planter box that needs love? A mailbox that would brighten up your driveway with an added coat of paint?
Pick a project. Make sure it’s small, low budget, and has lots of heart. We have found projects work best with either a well-defined lifetime (Pick an end date and stick to it! If it goes well, you can always launch phase two) or a well-thought out sustainability plan (These are very hard to ensure, so an end date is always our recommendation. An end date always leaves a fresh slate of new ideas from where another project can launch from.)
Tell the world about what you did! Press releases, social media posts, and word of mouth! Projects inspire others that have their own project ideas. Before long, you will have a chain reaction of other projects and can see the ripple effects of your efforts.
Tell us about them! We want to hear. Having a hard time thinking through project details or coming up with a tangible idea? Shoot us an email. We have loads of ideas and would love to help you formulate something amazing for the place you call home.