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Branding committee seeks to build Rushford's identity


Wed, Jan 26th, 2011
Posted in Progress Edition



"To creatively establish a unique community identity, promote a welcoming environment for visitors and prompt new residents and businesses to locate to a 'captivating Rushford'." - Rushford Area Branding Committee mission statement

What's in a brand? Apparently more than one might realize. Author Roy H. Williams, a renowned marketing consultant, calls branding "the sum of mental associations, good and bad, that are triggered by a name." According to Williams, it's about the message.

In Rushford, a handful of willing and eager people are working diligently to showcase the town's message. They're jumping off from information gathered following the catastrophic flood of 2007: a 75-page presentation by the Minnesota Design Team in April of 2008, which highlights public surveys and several design concepts for the community, and a 2009 assessment from Destination Development, Inc., founder and world-renowned community-branding expert, Robert Brooks. These documents, the committee's in-depth analysis, and local input are building blocks in the foundation of Rushford's future brand.

Spearheaded by Doug Botcher as chairman, the committee of eight doesn't want to be confused with a tourism board. Certainly one of the goals is to bring visitors and revenue to the community, but in the long term, the committee is striving to find a way to encourage and enhance the existing commerce and natural beauty of the town in addition to new ventures.

Just beginning the fourth year of recovery following the flood, Rushford is proud of its community spirit, top-notch educational system, facilities and resources, and its residents. Surrounded by an unmatched natural beauty, people are already drawn to the community. What it's seeking is an investment in the future, not simply revenue and faster growth, but vision and substance for a flourishing, vibrant community.

The group knows that progress itself may have its own metal association, one that is sometimes related to the idea of upsetting the comfort of "home." Keenly aware of the town's rich history and the values represented here, they are seeking to utilize creativity without sacrificing the core of the community.

"Creating a unique identity, drawing new people and business to Rushford, does not mean we are going to give up Rushford's beautiful, small community appeal," says committee Vice Chair Peggi Redalen. "It means that we can creatively craft and direct our commun .....
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Whalan: A small town with nationally recognized charm

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

Just a hop, skip and a jump from Lanesboro down Highway 16 east is Whalan, a close-knit Norwegian community. Because of its close proximity to Lanesboro, Whalan also enjoys a thriving tourist trade. With a population that hovers around 65, the town' ..... 
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Spring Valley progress

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

It's obvious that Spring Valley Mayor Jim Struzyk takes a lot of pride in the accomplishments of the city. He has represented the city as mayor and city councilman since the 1990's and says the reason he got involved was that "the City was 5 million ..... 
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Rushford sees big changes

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

A bevy of at least eight projects seemed to wrap up Rushford's year, many of which also seemed to draw a considerable amount of media attention and some controversy at times.

The 2009 Street and Utility Improvement Project, geared at updatin ..... 
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Determined Rushford Village works out solutions

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

Starting out with a definite list of determined goals, the city of Rushford Village made ample progress during the course of last year. According to City Clerk Joyce Iverson there are still some matters which are progressing forward, but not yet at ..... 
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Preston's ambitious dream for the future

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

National Trout Learning

Center

Preston has been building on some new ideas in 2009 which will extend into the coming year or years. City Administrator Joe Hoffman said he was very excited about the efforts to establish a National Trou ..... 
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Peterson continues community improvement

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

With LGA cuts looming large on nearly every small municipality, the city of Peterson recognizes the tasks lying before it. As a city with a population of under 500, and state and district leadership being able to offer little assistance, the city co ..... 
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Ostrander progress story

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

For the last eight years Linda Schwenn has been the mayor of Ostrander, and we found her in city hall on Martin Luther King's birthday, working with City Clerk Rhonda Klapperich. It's common to find her in the office from 8am to noon most days.
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Mabel progress

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Progress Edition

The people in Mabel have been working on raising enough money to build a new Community Center. Plans have been drawn up and a location picked out. The building that was on the creamery lot was torn down to make room. Several fundraisers have been or ..... 
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