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Initiative Quarterly

Be Chosen for Community Visit by Deb Brown

July 19, 2018

Hometowns can apply for the opportunity to host nationally renowned community development specialist Deb Brown of SaveYour.Town

Central Minnesota communities are encouraged to complete an application--or submit a quick video--by Aug. 17 for the opportunity to be selected for a four-day visit in September by nationally renowned community development specialist Deb Brown.

Brown's small-town upbringing (Geneva, Iowa, population 141) and passion has helped countless communities reimagine a hometown where people want to live, work and play. Her programs on small business, customer service, marketing and economic development-including what to do with empty storefronts-have been received by chambers of commerce, economic development groups, tourism specialists, museum experts, business leaders and small-town conferences. Learn more at SaveYour.Town.

Up to two eligible Central Minnesota communities* will be selected. To be considered, simply complete an application or upload a short video (nothing fancy; just 2-3 minutes of thoughtful video captured on a mobile phone) and describe your community challenge, your level of community engagement and your readiness to host a visit from a community development specialist.

"This extension of the Foundation's Thriving Communities Initiative presents a wonderful opportunity for two communities to get a quick and valuable infusion of ideas and insights to elevate local improvements," said Michelle Kiley, community development program manager at the Foundation. "We're delighted to be able to offer this Hometown Turnaround opportunity."

Each four-day visit has an estimated value of $5,000. Selected communities will receive a report of Brown's findings along with next-step recommendations to take local action. The Initiative Foundation will provide ongoing support for up to three months following Brown's visit.

To learn more, visit ifound.org/hometown. For questions, contact Michelle Kiley at mkiley(at)ifound.org or call (320) 631-2048.

*Eligible communities include: Albany; Albertville; Annandale; Avon; Baxter; Becker; Belgrade; Big Lake; Brainerd; Breezy Point; Brooten; Buffalo; Center City; Chickamaw Beach; Chisago City; Clear Lake; Clearwater; Cokato; Cold Spring; Crosslake; Dayton; Delano; East Gull Lake; Eden Valley; Fifty Lakes; Foley; Freeport; Greenwald; Hanover; Holdingford; Howard Lake; Isanti; Jenkins; Kimball; Lake Henry; Lake Shore; Lindstrom; Manhattan Beach; Maple Lake; Meire Grove; Melrose; Monticello; Montrose; New Munich; Nisswa; North Branch; Osakis; Otsego; Paynesville; Pequot Lakes; Pillager; Pine River; Pleasant Lake; Princeton; Rice; Richmond; Riverton; Rockford; Rockville; Roscoe; Royalton; St. Anthony; St. Augusta; St. Cloud; St. Joseph; St. Martin; St. Michael; St. Stephen; Sartell; Sauk Rapids; Shafer; South Haven; Spring Hill; Stacy; Taylors Falls; Waite Park; Waverly; West Union; Wyoming; Zimmerman.

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