The town I live in

Kathsgrdn

I guess there is a contest on Youtube for HGTV. Someone posted a video last week on Facebook about it and I just went and watched it. I live around the corner from Main Street and those big old homes at the beginning of the video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWS02VAPq8I

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Marilyn_Sue

A small town just 3 miles east of me has entered the contest also. Their population is only, 1,833 in 2017. I am hoping they can win as they can surely use some help, even with Christmas lights! They have been having some fund raising events to purchase lights, as it is now they just rent them! I hope we find out in time who does win.

Sue

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phoggie

My little hometown where I grew up...population of about 900, also entered this contest.

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nickel_kg

I wonder how many applications they got? several hundred, at least?

Kathsgrdn, those are neat old homes. Is the area very walkable? It would be fun to stroll down the street and take a good look at the gardens and architecture :-)

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Rose Pekelnicky

A small town in NW Pennsylvania, Union City, about 25 miles from me has also entered. I think they could have thousands of entries.

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Rusty

I just learned yesterday that the town I live in has entered it, as well as at least three other small towns in South Texas, less than 100 miles from me. I'm sure they will have well into the thousands of entries. I'm curious as to what the criteria for entering is.

Rusty

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Elmer J Fudd

I think you're right, Rose. There are thousands of dead and dying small towns across the US. A TV makeover won't change reality for the winner. Except for those located near larger cities, the writing is on the wall and many will become like ghost towns. People are leaving the boondocks to seek jobs and better life opportunities in more populated areas.

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sheilajoyce_gw

Kathy, I love those old, big homes. Such lovely detail in hundred year old homes.

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litasart

Our sleeping little town of Pascagoula, MS has entered. I believe it will be a boost to the town if they win. :) beautiful Gulf Coast.

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woodrose

I hope they win, Kathsgrdn ! I'm a little concerned about what HGTV might do to whichever town wins, but, hopefully, they will go along with what the residents want.

For some reason I thought you lived in Versailles, I don't know much about Lawrenceburg, but it seems like a good place to live if you like the peace and quiet of a small town. One of my nieces lived there for many years, and she loved it.

Elmer, there may be thousands of dead and dying small towns across America, but that number is pretty insignificant compared to the the number that actually exist. There are hundreds of thousands of small towns that are either thriving, or holding steady with no danger of dying. I don't think some towns like Lawrenceburg are dying, they're just in need of a little help.

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Elmer J Fudd

woodrose, I don't have a statistic but I think we've all encountered town after town with declining populations, empty buildings on "Main Street" and declining jobs. That's what I had in mind with the comment. I don't know how many there are but the demographic trends show that an increasing proportion of Americans are living in or near larger cities. The economic and social forces that attracted and retained people in small towns have diminished significantly. It's a fact.

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Kathsgrdn

Nickel, yes, it is walkable, unlike my neighborhood that has no sidewalks, there is a sidewalk. There is also a beautiful, old cemetery on that side of the road. I've been on a tour of the Ripy house with my daughter right after it opened and started giving tours. They weren't allowed to take people in the basement but my daughter knew the young guy working the tour and he took us down there.

Woodrose, I was thinking the same thing! I've seen their shows and some of their improvements are far from it. I do drive through Versailles nearly every day. My daughter and I had lunch in a little cafe there not to long ago. Versailles has entered the competition too.

Lawrenceburg isn't really dying, the downtown area has a lot of unused buildings, next to main street is very rundown, in two areas. Most restaurants don't stay open more than a year or more. Most people work in the capital, Frankfort, or do what I do, commute to Lexington.


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Lars

The town where I went to high school in central Texas is two and a half times as big as it was when I lived there. Most places in central Texas seem to be growing rather rapidly, but of course I was very happy to get out.

I've not had the experience of seeing small towns that are declining, but I guess I have not been going to the right places. Most of my travel in the U.S. has been on the West Coast and Southwest, but I did make a trip to western Michigan and Philadelphia last summer. The train ride from Philadelphia to Newark was not pretty, I will say.

How can you tell what towns are entered in the HGTV contest? I've never heard of this contest before.

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dedtired

Yes, I’m curious, too about how to find out which towns have entered. I’d love for the little,town my parents came from to be rescued, but I’m afraid it’s beyond help and never did have much charm.


no, Lars, that train ride is definitely not scenic!

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Kathsgrdn

I have no idea but I did find both on YouTube by typing in the name of the town and HGTV in my search. I don't know if HGTV has it on their website. I haven't checked.

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lulu bella

I tried to check their website and the best I could find is requirements (such as town has to have fewer than 40,000 residents). When I clicked submission page it said all are under review so maybe the entry period has finished. I thought there would be a list of towns entered but I could not find one.This is the link I found, but not too helpful

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jemdandy

The demise of small town America is sad, and from my observations, I believe these towns are dying from lack of income - Money. I was raised in a rural location that is populated by small towns. The decline of these towns began during WW2 and have never recovered. It appears that if a town falls below a critical population, it continues toward death. The reason: Not enough taxes to maintain critical functions like schools, water and sewer systems, police and fire departments. My hometown is having trouble of keeping its school system running, especially the high school. The school budget is a mess. The high school can no longer retain teachers. The pay is too low and the future too bleak to look forward to long term employment. Most new teachers use it as a stepping stone, first job after graduation until they build some experience and then they leave for better jobs. That school, like many others, has an underfunded pension fund. As people leave this arena, they take their kids (and tax money) with them and the school enrollment falls. The number of students in my high school have fallen to half or what it was back in 1955.

The demise does not stop at the city limits; It continues beyond. Country stores disappeared long ago, and most country churches are gone also. Farm building including houses are falling into disrepair. Roads did improve from 1945 up to 1960 and then stalled. Small town political cliques have worsened.

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Elmer J Fudd

"I believe these towns are dying from lack of income - Money. "

Yes, this is it. How local governments are affected is the result, but not the problem. Jobs and economic opportunities have left many areas holding empty bags. Large employers have moved or closed, family farming is no longer viable. Local governments are failing to provide services because their tax bases are plummeting - they can't spend money they don't have.

Many people leave in pursuit of more opportunities but what surprises me is how many people remain in these economic deserts. And accept their diminished living circumstances and often unemployment or underemployment. For too many people, for unknown reasons, the pursuit of the American Dream and hopes of bettering themselves to have more comfortable lives seems to not be a factor. It's their choice to stay put but it's sad.

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Gargamel

I agree Elmer. For economically disadvantaged people, though, I would think it is a very expensive undertaking to move

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Elmer J Fudd

For those who are unemployed or underemployed with few job prospects where they live, NOT moving is much more "expensive". Of course, best to find that job first.

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Michele

Keep in mind that living in or near a big city is costly. The closer to the city, the higher the price. It’s loud, it’s crowded, it’s dirty. Stressful. If you go further out and commute, be prepared to spend an hour (or two) traveling. Twice a day.

If that sounds appealing....go for it.

I can’t wait to get out!

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joyfulguy

Nice to be retired and receiving a couple of govt. and a private pension that follow wherever I live.

So, following coming daily from mediocre townhouse in above average income suburb to my stepuncle's farmhouse almost daily following his death several years ago to make it look lived in and forestall possible damage, the new owner wondered whether I'd like to rent the older, two bedroom house with extra room added later.

As I was paying $750. per month plus util. for a 2 bedroom townhouse with unfinished basement and he was asking $450. plus power, there was well water, not pass test so I haul drinking water from the city in jugs, it only took a couple of seconds for me to agree.

I grew up on a farm and enjoy rural life, that part was O.K. with me, and I can buy a lot of gas to travel the 15 mi. or a bit more to the city when I choose.

Landlord's more personally interested, says I can stay here as long as I like: I agree as long as I can drive: hitchhiking to town for doc. or groceries in Feb. is not an attractive prospect.

I passed required consultation, written and eye tests, required for all drivers at 80 and above, a couple of weeks ago - so I'm licensed for a couple more years.

Following a substantial snowmobile accident in distant rural Quebec a couple of years ago, my landlord was left with a left arm disabled in a sling and in constant pain, which is a major difficulty for him, a very busy sod farmer. Occasionally he's asked when I was nearby to give him a little help to get a chore done, and I told him the other day that if he needs a little help to get something done on occasion, to phone me, as I'm here quite a bit of the time and am seldom so occupied with a task that I can't leave for a few minutes.

It must be hugely frustrating to be unable to have that little help that a second hand can provide when one is trying to get some small task accomplished.

I'll have been here 15 years as of 1st of March.

ole joyful

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Elmer J Fudd

joyful, are you saying that the well water is poisoned/contaminated and dangerous to drink? I'm surprised Canadian law would permit the rental of a place as a residence that doesn't have a safe water supply.

I'll bet it doesn't. Perhaps his enthusiasm to have a tenant "as long as you like" and the low monthly price are because you accept the situation. Many wouldn't.

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