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One-by-one, sixteen local leaders from multiple neighboring
rural communities, courageously, yet with some hesitancy, walked through the
door of the community room. They did not know what to expect from this
gathering. They didn’t even all know each other. The group, representing city
councils, county commission, and economic development corporation, had been
personally invited by the county-wide economic development director to hear
from a special guest on the topic of how they could work better together to
make their region stronger.
As each leader entered the room the smell of pizza greeted
them, making them feel welcome. After some small talk while they ate their
pizza, the local leaders were asked to sit down at the tables that had
purposely been positioned into a large rectangle, so they could see each other.
The meeting began with introductions and each of them shared why they chose to
be a leader. The group was … Read More »
Eight months after attending their first RuralX, Shawn and Bryan Bietz have helped spark a whole new level of community camaraderie in Tripp. The couple attended RuralX as a way to help find new resources and information about rural economic and community development. Since then, the community has come together for the better, despite some unexpected challenges.
An example of this community togetherness can be found on the Tripp Action Group (TAG) Facebook page, which was created by Shawn after she returned from RuralX as a “positive space to share ideas, collaborate and implement some great things in our community.” Shawn and Bryan were inspired to start a community group at RuralX. They created a name, a logo and a Facebook page to help launch the group. Today, the TAG page has 200 followers, which is just a little less than … Read More »
Last summer, guests at RuralX were offered the opportunity to create an agenda of rural “hot topics” during a session called OpenX. Kelsey Doom, Wagner’s economic development director, brought up the topic of management training for rural employees.
Cheyenne McGriff, economic development director in Wall, was excited to take part in the session and share ideas.
“It was a conversation I was really interested in for the Wall community,” said Cheyenne. “I had conversations with managers in the past who desired this type of training for their current employees. I wanted to help provide an opportunity to empower community members by providing training and knowledge. Kelsey hosted a great session and I went back to Wall determined to take that conversation a step further.”
South Dakota Grants in Place is a cooperative venture between the Rural Schools Collaborative and Dakota Resources. Grants in Place provides a modest grant to rural teachers so they can engage with their students and community in place-based learning.
The Grants in Place program was implemented in South Dakota by Dakota Resources to connect rural teachers and students to their community through local projects. “Building the connections between rural schools and communities will help us ‘Get Better Together’”, says Mike Knutson, Dakota Resources Learning Network Director.
Jim Beddow, former President of Dakota Wesleyan University and Board Chair for the Rural Schools Collaborative states, “We believe that place-based education gives meaning to learning, strengthens the bonds between school and community, and instills pride in the cultures and histories of rural places and small towns.”
The 2018-19 program will fund five rural place-based learning projects … Read More »
SHCRI announces three options
HOT SPRINGS – Following a Community Engagement Gathering on Jan. 24, 2016, and after months of research and clarifying the need for a Recreation Center in Hot Springs, the Southern Hills Community Recreation Initiative (SHCRI) recently announced that they have three viable options, which were attained through public input.
Partnering with Southern Hills Economic Development Corporation (SHEDCO), a community ice-cream social was held last month on Sept. 24 to determine which option was best for Hot Springs.
The three options include:
1. Build onto the Mueller Center, which encompasses building a second gymnasium, walking track, an’ L’ shaped lap pool with diving boards. This would be a good fit, according to a press release from SHCRI, because of the amenities. For example the Mueller Center has a full kitchen, and meeting rooms. When the Mueller Center was built, there … Read More »