Small Town & Rural Development Conference – Wrapping It Up
Photo credit: flickr.com/adamknits

The 2012 Small Town and Rural Development Conference is now in the books. If you were not able to join us, here is just a small taste of conference happenings.

  • Mary Randoph, Executive Director of the Wyoming Rural Development Council, kicked off with a dynamic keynote address about conducting community assessments in small towns. The Michigan Rural Council will be continuing to discuss this work and how it can be employed throughout rural Michigan. Be sure to let us know if you are interested in participating in these discussions.
  • Roger Brooks, from Destination Development International Inc., kept everyone awake after lunch with a terrific luncheon address about the “Reinvention of Rural America”. Roger helped us think about what makes our individual communities stand out from the crowd.
  • Becky McCray, author of Small Town Rules, treated us to a brief discussion about the rules governing small town business success and what big brands have found that the rules apply to them as well.
  • There were  23 breakout sessions covering 20 different topics important to small town and rural development.
  • We enjoyed two networking receptions where we could connect with old friends and make new ones.
  • Five different small communities shared stories about successful programs and initiatives in their towns.
  • The conference added a Twitter hastag this year and plans to incorporate this into future conferences as well.
  • We enjoyed the pleasant, even if it was a touch windy, weather in beautiful northern Michigan.

These are just a few things that happened during our short time together at Crystal Mountain Resort. Be sure to save the date for next year’s conference: April 22-24, 2013.

Now it’s your turn, what was your favorite moment during the Conference? Let us know so we can try to make sure that it happens again in the future!