Getting to Know your Neighbors: Worth the Effort

 

GETTING TO KNOW YOUR NEIGHBORS: WORTH THE EFFORT

by Marielle Briant

Photo by Marshall Birnbaum

Photo by Marshall Birnbaum

So, you’ve opted for mountain life. Congratulations, you’ve accepted that your fate could involve being trapped at home for days on end due to weather complications, facing the occasional power outages, or getting stuck with poor cell phone reception.

Or maybe you haven’t, and you’re starting to doubt whether or not this is for you. Well, the good news is, you don’t have to choose. Here at Summit, we’re bringing you the best of urban nd mountain living to create a new kind of home altogether - one where you can feel safe, connected, and most important, inspired by the people around you.

Fundamentally, we believe that it’s not just our technology, or even our team of talented architects, planners and engineers who will make our home so special here on the mountain, it’s the people who live next door. It’s you, our neighbors, and the people who will make up our community.

Because we have each experienced our neighborhoods in different ways, with some of us having grown up in small towns and others in big cities, we started thinking about how we could build a place that works for all of us, and that catered to our differing needs.  

Photo by Marshall Birnbaum

Photo by Marshall Birnbaum

When we first started discussing our plans for Summit, we realized that we all shared in the desire to feel connected to our neighborhoods. In putting our heads together to find out what an ideal neighborhood might look like, taking a strong sense of community as the underlying principle, we drew up a list of practical tips to engage with our neighbors.

  1. Create or join an online forum. Whether you are looking to find a job, track down a lost pet, post items for sale, search for upcoming events, promote your trade or skill, or locate a local business, an online forum is a great way to start a conversation. 

  2. Hosting a potluck or a block party is ideal to break the ice, but asking people to engage in a recurring activity is the best way to create a deeper connection. Think about what your neighbors might be interested in, and the resources that are available to you. Does starting a mountain woodcarvers association sound like a good investment of your time, or is a book club more aligned with your interests?

  3. Form a neighborhood association or set up a community foundation supporting the arts and culture in your local area. Here at Summit Institute, we are honored to partner with fantastic nonprofits addressing challenging issues including environmental conservation, access to the arts, improved education, and healthcare. We also support local organizations bringing arts and cultural opportunities to all ages in our communities and are dedicated to protecting our area’s magnificent natural environment. We’d love for you to get involved in charting this journey with us.

  4. Set up a walking tour to get people outside, discovering their local flora and fauna and experiencing the wild outdoors. Running, hiking, mountain climbing, skiing and other forms of fitness are excellent ways to bond, but walking allows us to prioritize conversation above all else and should not be overlooked.

Photo by Marshall Birnbaum

Photo by Marshall Birnbaum

As you go along your search for a more tribal life, we hope you’ll consider that while big cities maintain the illusion of connectedness, with houses and apartments standing close together, ironically smaller towns, with houses more spread out, seem to enjoy a stronger sense of closeness and community. Powder Mountain is no exception.
Interacting daily with travelers from around the world, and co-existing with nature and other wildlife, all while living amongst locals serves to reinforce our sense of belonging, everyday.
Lucky for you, we’re looking for our new neighbors. Will you join us?

 
 
Sam Arthur