Ben Winchester on "Moving In, Moving Out, & Moving Over"
Heal Reno County and the Hutchinson Housing Commission invite you to a presentation on housing trends in rural America. Ben Winchester, Rural Sociologist at the University of Minnesota Extension Center on Community Vitality, will present “Moving In, Moving Out, and Moving Over” from 8:30-10 a.m. on Wednesday, April 17 at the Atrium Conference Center. On average, 30% of rural America’s homes are owned by people over the age of 75. Another 45% are owned by the Baby Boomers. This means that almost three-quarters of our owner-occupied housing supply will turn over during the next 20 years. The supply, and demand, of these homes will change the face of our rural communities. There are complexities involved here that require a broad examination of the trends related to people moving in, moving out, and moving over that have far-reaching consequences.
Aspects of change related to these trends – such as workforce housing, a tight labor market, and changing residential preferences – will be discussed. This presentation is free and open to the public, though advance registration is requested. We encourage you also to attend one of Ben Winchester’s presentations in Hutchinson on “Rewriting the Rural Narrative” prior to this housing-specific session: Part of Heal Reno County’s Connected Community, Healthy Community speaker & discussion series, Winchester will present 'Rewriting the Rural Narrative' at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 16 at The Wool Market & DIY School, 420 N. Main, in Hutchinson. Free and open to the public, though seating is limited. More information here. Winchester will be the featured speaker at the Chamber Breakfast at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, April 17 at the Atrium, giving an abbreviated version of 'Rewriting the Rural Narrative." Advance registration required here. About Ben Winchester Winchester has been working both in and for small towns across the Midwest for over 20 years. He lives in St. Cloud, Minnesota, with his wife and two children. He is trained as a Rural Sociologist and works as a Senior Research Fellow for the University of Minnesota Extension, Center for Community Vitality. He conducts applied research on economic, social, and demographic topics surrounding a theme of “rewriting the rural narrative” that are vital to rural America. The first documents “newcomers” – the influx of 30-49 year old people – to identify the social and economic opportunities of this migration. The second research topic involves the analysis of rural community leadership, specifically examining the community-wide requirements to “keep the town running” through the public and nonprofit sector. The third is the impact of the baby boomer retirements on the rural housing supply. These positive trends show that rural communities show a resilience of which we should be proud.Winchester received his B.A. in Mathematics and Statistics from the University of Minnesota, Morris (1995) and M.S. in Rural Sociology from the University of Missouri, Columbia (2001). He was a founding employee at the Center for Small Towns, an outreach and engagement program at the University of Minnesota, Morris and specializes in community development, demographic analysis, data visualization, and moving communities away from anecdata. For more information about Heal Reno County and to join the effort to make Reno County a healthier place to live, work, and play, visit healrenocounty.org. Funding for this presentation was made possible by the Pathways to a Healthy Kansas initiative from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas (BCBSKS). Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA). The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of BCBSKS or BCBSA; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by either organization.