Tag Archives: Sense of place

Agritourism initiative in Oregon

17 Jun

I’ve been working with Travel Oregon as well as a group of partners including Oregon State University Small Farms program to cultivate a better environment for agritourism here. This work renews my gratefulness to those who steward the environment, preserve open space and beautiful vistas, and work the soil to put healthy delicious food on my table!


Project Update: An Oregon Timber Town Reinventing Itself

2 May

How are the people in Oakridge, Oregon reinventing their community? Prepare to be inspired!


Remembering how not to know it all

18 Jan

We are just back from a wonderful trip to Europe, thanks to the magic of frequent flier miles. We visited Istanbul, Prague, and Lisbon, all for the first time, not knowing anything of the local languages except for “please” and “thank you”! We awoke to morning prayer calls rolling one over the other (at 6:16 […]


Joining a club that will have you as a member: Tourism development lesson from Australia

7 Jul

Groucho Marx famously said he wouldn’t want to join a club that would have him as a member. Well, I disagree! It seems a common practice in Australia to offer free day passes to member-only establishments if one lives so many kilometers away from the community.


Weaving a destination together: Part II lessons from New Zealand rural tourism development

23 Jun

Our recent experience traveling in New Zealand was so unlike anywhere else I’ve been, and, more importantly, so relevant and potentially replicable for rural communities here that it’s worth sharing. The most stunning difference was the strong system of logistical support for independent travelers, from one community to another, one activity to another, something more guided to something less guided. I’ve plucked one week out of our trip to illustrate these dynamics.


Mixing it up: Lessons from a Nativity creche and Roller Derby

17 Dec

Last weekend, we set out the Christmas decorations. We laid fresh cedar garlands on the mantel and brought budding paperwhites poised full of sweet peppery scent up from the cool garage. We hauled a lush fragrant Noble fir over the porch railing, then decked it with three generations of ornaments and a big copper star. But first, even before setting out the red wooden train, the cast iron reindeer, or the muslin snowman . . .


First followers, second fiddles, third places

6 Apr

Here are links to three great web posts about recurrent themes in this blog: leadership, the intersect between nonprofit and business practices, and community building.


Community in a box

31 Mar

“Is that tiramisu in there?”

“Maybe carrot cake, my favorite?”

“Must be a special day!”

“Whatever it is, mmmmmm!”

These are unsolicited comments I received as I zipped from errand to errand this morning. All because I was carrying a baby shoe sized box with a burnished rectangular label.


Giving directions by where things used to be

6 Jan

I’m preparing to visit Chicago, a place I lived many years ago. I’ve only been back once since, and I’m curious to see what’s changed. I think that’s why the lyrics from a favorite folk song keep running through my mind today. The song is called Home to Me by Jim Henry, and the memorable line is “I give out directions by where things used to be.”


Lesson from a cold snap

10 Dec

I thought I knew everything about winter. I grew up in New England and lived many winters in Maine. Maine people have a reputation for being taciturn: I think it’s just a winter habit that stuck. During Maine winters, you don’t want to talk much outdoors. Damp sub-zero gusts shock your teeth like an errant dentist’s drill.