This page is to assist organizations and/or individuals who are hosting a Strong Towns event.

If you are interested in hosting an event in your area, please click here to get started.

What to expect

Over the coming weeks and months, Strong Towns staff will be in touch with you to help prepare for the event. You can expect the following:

  1. Rachel Quednau will contact you about advertising and promoting the event.
  2. Michelle Erfurt will continue to work with you to finalize event details.
  3. The event will be listed on our Event page.
  4. We will feature the event on our website, podcast and/or social media to help promote the work you are doing.
  5. We will contact our members and supporters in the area via email and invite them to attend the event.

Resources for Your Event

Click on the items below to download

Additional support we can provide

  • Press releases, interviews, and op-eds for your local paper. Contact Rachel Quednau at quednau@strongtowns.org if you are interested in this.
  • Follow-up events in your area or region. Contact Michelle Erfurt at michelle@strongtowns.org if you are interested in this.

Presentation Descriptions:

+ Curbside Chat

How can our towns get stronger when our economy changes--not weaker? How can we re-populate our empty streets and empty storefronts? What can we learn from the earliest days of city building about building better places tomorrow? And how can active citizens, local officials, and ordinary people make it happen today, no matter how badly we’re starting off?

If we want American cities to be strong, we need to change everything about the way we plan and build our places.

In the Curbside Chat, we explain, in plain language, how so many American cities have found themselves in decline after decades of “growth.” And then we show you a revolutionary way forward that could create enduring prosperity--if we just have the courage to change our minds.

Topics covered include: America's Suburban Experiment; the Growth Ponzi Scheme; the illusion of wealth; mechanisms of growth; and incremental and traditional development models.

Learn more and watch our short films of the Curbside Chat.

+ Transportation in the Next American City

For more than six decades, local governments have been accustomed to building new transportation infrastructure, expanding existing systems in addition to constructing completely new facilities. While liabilities have grown, transportation funding has not kept up. Now there is a desperate need for local governments to shift from building to maintaining, from an approach that emphasizes expansion to one where we mature our use of existing investments. In difficult economic times, this is a scary, but necessary, realignment.

Topics Covered: centralization vs. local decisionmaking; roads, streets and stroads; congestion and safety; the role of state and federal funding; transit; walkability; and bike options.

+ Neighborhoods First

Risky, low returning projects too often become expensive boondoggles that haunt a community for decades. Public officials everywhere are desperately seeking an alternative. This talk will cover the "Neighborhoods First" approach to show how a community can grow stronger by making small, incremental investments over time. By observing how neighbors live their lives, by asking them where their daily struggles are, by getting out on the street and discovering what is actually going on, any local government can discern what their community’s pressing needs are. These projects are the high return investments and they are all around us.

Read the Neighborhoods First report, based on neighborhoods in Brainerd, MN.

+ Walking Tour

During a Charles Marohn led walking tour, attendees learn Strong Town principles as they apply to their immediate area. Participants discover how to view their neighborhood through the Strong Towns perspective while identifying current challenges and discussing possible solutions to their built environment. The walking tour is a way for attendees to see the bridge between topics shared in our Curbside Chat lecture in the local context.

+ Infrastructure Crisis

For more than six decades, local governments have been accustomed to building infrastructure and expanding existing systems. While liabilities have grown, transportation funding has not kept up. Now there is a desperate need for local governments to change their approach. We need to shift our strategy from an emphasis on continuous expansion to a more mature focus on maintenance and maximization of existing infrastructure. In difficult economic times, this is a scary, but necessary, realignment.

There are trillions of dollars of unproductive infrastructure already in the ground today waiting for us to make better use of. At Strong Towns, we see that our cities, towns and neighborhoods are dripping with opportunity. These opportunities are not of the mega-project variety. They are small -- seemingly beneath us, perhaps -- but they can positively transform everything about how we live our lives.

Read more about the American infrastructure crisis.