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Summit Registration Open for Community Teams

Teams of up to five people can now register for the 2020 VIRTUAL Iowa Rural Summit, to be held online August 20-21.

While individuals will pay $50 apiece to register, rural communities can have a team of up to five people register for only $150 for the two half-day event, which begins at 1pm on Thursday, Aug 20.  The second half day gets underway at 8am on Friday, Aug 21.  A draft agenda is attached.

The Iowa Rural Summit has been held annually since 2016.  It brings together community leaders, resource and service providers to share best practices, new ideas and opportunities for collaboration.  Last year’s in-person Summit attracted almost 400 people from across Iowa.

Communities can guarantee their participation by going to this link:

Individuals seeking to attend can register here: 

The Summit is sponsored by the Iowa Rural Development Council (IRDC), a public-private state non-profit that works to support small towns addressing issues such as housing, broadband access, business development and leadership.

“We are excited about this virtual Summit,” said IRDC Chair Sandy Ehrig. “There is real value in coming together, even over a computer screen, at a time like this. Rural communities are facing unique challenges, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Technology allows us to have this gathering, share experiences and best practices, and prepare our rural towns for the recovery that has already begun.”

The 2020 Virtual Rural Summit will feature keynote addresses from two well-known Iowa speakers. Brooklyn, Iowa, native Steve Siemens will talk about rural collaboration and strategies for building rural partnerships. Atlantic-native David Williamson is a professional artist and poet. An inductee into the Iowa Rock’n Roll Hall of Fame after 50+ years of songwriting and performing, he will discuss art, creativity and community engagement.

Steve and David provide great bookends to the Summit,” Ehrig said. “But in between we will have sessions on issues ranging from community visioning to encouraging ag tech to accessing new funding programs. Our break-out session tracks are Facilities and Projects, Critical Issues and Facing the Future – and the content will be of use to anyone who lives in rural Iowa.”

For more information, contact Bill Menner using email:

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