Creating a Community: Holidays

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Creating a Community: Holidays

Creating a Community

Creating a Community

What would it look like if big box were open on a holiday and nobody went?

Here’s my challenge to you. Plan ahead as best you can and if you forget something…borrow from a neighbor!

Let Holidays Be Holidays

I was angry to see that our small Indiana town grocery store would be open on Thanksgiving. Really? Is that really necessary? We all know it’s coming. We just need to plan ahead and if we forget that one thing we need, then we can turn to those folks who live right around us!

When I was in college, my first Thanksgiving away from home was spent working at a big box shop. I had three customers come in–and two of those were for directions. I worked the day alone. They didn’t expect to be busy enough to need anyone else. Why were they even open?

I didn’t have turkey that night. I didn’t get to hang out with my family and play board games or create new memories. I didn’t get pumpkin pie.

Where we once used to turn to a neighbor, we now hop in the car alone and drive away. We’ve gotten so hooked on instant gratification that we have failed to see how it has affected our society. I’d like to change that.

One Step at a Time

It’s a simple way to create community. So what if you forgot whipped cream or meant to grab a jar of green olives? It’s not going to ruin your Thanksgiving. If you need it so bad, ask to borrow it. It’s as simple as that.

Isn’t it time we focused on being thankful for what we have and strive toward letting other families have that same experience? These broken holidays aren’t doing any of us any good. How can we teach the importance of family and friends when there’s so much to do that we can’t hardly schedule in time to see each other?

You know, there’s this magical window where it’s great to welcome someone to the neighborhood and then…it just becomes awkward. Borrowing something from a neighbor is a great ice breaker and the foundation of forming a community.

Build a Foundation

When I go on my small town trips, I know there are people watching over my house. If I need something, I know who to call–and so do they.

Look, it’s one thing when a small business owner stays open to man the shop. It’s another when someone appoints someone else to manage the shop while they go on their merry way. If the post office is closed, why isn’t everyone else?

If you need a can of pumpkin, I’ll be here.

Small Towns: Destinations, not Drive-Thrus! I’m Jessica Nunemaker and THIS is little Indiana!

Find pictures in Indiana on my Flickr photostream or on the new little Indiana Tumblr blog.

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By |2014-01-01T15:47:54+00:00November 21st, 2012|Creating Community, Extras, Little Towns|2 Comments

About the Author:

Jessica Nunemaker is the Owner of Little More than a website, Little Indiana is a book, "Little Indiana: Small Town Destinations" (IU Press) awarded first place in the "Best in Indiana Journalism for a Nonfiction Book" by the Indiana Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Little Indiana is also a bi-monthly newspaper column in a local paper and a PBS segment on the former Emmy award-winning program, "The Weekly Special."


  1. Jessica Nunemaker January 7, 2015 at 11:22 pm

    Now THAT is a great neighbor! Ha ha! 🙂

  2. Lana Wallpe December 2, 2014 at 12:21 pm

    My neighbor and I are always helping each other out. We might be a quarter of a mile away, but we usually have what the other needs. On the last exchange, her daughter and DIL came over to trade a bottle of wine for a small can of green chilies. Gotta love neighbors like this!

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