Small Towns News

Putting Art in the Driver’s Seat

It is summertime in small-town America. People line main street for parades and gather in the park for antique tractor shows. Events like these make a town come alive.

We spend a lot of time at the Center for Rural Affairs discussing business development. Art and cultural development is often thought of second, after business and infrastructure are attended to. 

That is the wrong approach. 

Cultural events – the things we do together – give us a sense of identity and shape who we are as a community. 

Rural Electric Co-ops Can Renew Community Spirit

I tore a page out of my rural electric co-op newsletter last fall. It is pinned it to my wall. I read it every day. It says, “Electric co-ops were constructed with lines, poles, and the foolhardy notion that we all prosper by helping each other.”

It’s so true. The co-operative spirit that brought electric service to rural America represents the community-driven values of small towns – values the Center works to uphold today.

We Are Rural: Reflecting on 40 Years

The Center for Rural Affairs turned 40 years old this year. Think about that for a minute.

When Marty Strange and Don Ralston first threw open the doors 40 years ago, it was anyone’s guess if the scrappy organization on main street in a town of 800 would make it for one year.

It didn’t take long before rural people were flocking in from across the state.

They came to early Center gatherings. They had heard about a new organization located in the heart of rural America with a mission to lift up everyday rural people. An organization with a belief in a better future.

Explore the Fantastic on Nebraska’s Scenic Byways

You’ve probably seen a Nebraska Byway sign if you’ve traveled around the state. Think of it as a shout-out to you, bragging about the highway’s great features!

A byway designation means you’re among scenic, historic, recreational, cultural, archeological, or other natural features that are unique, irreplaceable, or distinctly characteristic of an area. That’s a lot of appeal, and a great way to show off some history!


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