First Impressions of Your Town

All communities have difficulties viewing their surrounding as others – customers, visitors, potential residents, and potential businesses – see them. Our views are skewed by over-familiarization, a lack of differing perspectives, expectations, and a reluctance to be completely honest with our neighbors when dealing with difficult issues, such as the appearance of buildings, customer service, and the maintenance of public facilities. Recently a volunteer team from another community of similar size made a visit to Your Town to report their “First Impressions” of the community. The team acted as “secret shoppers” for the day to discover what they could about Your Town. They followed a set procedure established through the “First Impressions” program and documented their results. These results will be shared at a public meeting on Wednesday, February 27th from 630p-8p at the Raymond Frye Complex. Following the presentation, two or three project areas will be identified and time will be allowed for discussion and initial planning. Everyone is encouraged to attend to learn how a visitor sees your community. “First Impressions” is a program developed by K-State Research and Extension through the Community Vitality program. The focus of the program is to help communities learn about existing strengths and weaknesses through the eyes of visitor. The results from a “First Impressions” visit can serve as the basis for community action and as a way to document changes in a community over time. For further information about the meeting contact Kelly Ford at 620-326-7466 or