A POSITIVE VIEW OF RURAL: Tiny Events

You want to bring more life and activity to your downtown, but big events are a big pain. Let’s do some tiny events instead. They’re a small pain, but a lot of fun.

  • Recruit anyone who gives lessons to hold a student performance (could be music, dance, martial arts, drama, writing, language, anything!) Students bring families, instant crowd
  • Bring games, tables and chairs and hold a game night (board games, card games, dominoes, legos, you name it)
  • Bring beach chairs and umbrellas and pretend you have a downtown beach (play beachy summer music for bonus points)
  • Hold a tasting or sampling from any local winery, food business, or even cooking classes
  • Pop-up card table sized businesses (see pop-up fair instructions here)
  • Read poetry or start community conversations on any topic you like (poetry slam?)

Do one of these next week. Then try it again. Of course it will start small, with only a few people. Keep going. Spread the word. See what happens. Enjoy the process.

Not working out? Try a different one. Keep testing and improving.

Where can you do it?

  • Empty lots
  • Pocket parks
  • Empty buildings
  • Roofless buildings
  • Inside an existing business that wants to play along

You can see that this is Idea Friendly in action, right? It’s Taking Small Steps because it’s a mini-event. It’s Gathering Your Crowd because you’re publicly spreading the word about bringing life and activity downtown. And it’s Building Connections as you give people new chances to talk to each other.

Just keep it tiny and keep it fun.

Becky McCray

Becky McCray writes about small business and rural issues, based on her own successes and failures. She and her husband own a small town retail liquor store and cattle ranch.  Learn more at her website.