Lake Titloe and the City’s park system emerged as Gaylord’s top strengths in a community visioning session held last week at American Lutheran Church.
Pinpointing Gaylord’s strengths, challenges and opportunities was the task for more than 60 area residents who attended the session. After discussion in small groups, the people voted on what they viewed as Gaylord’s top strengths, challenges and opportunities.
According to the vote, Lake Titloe and the Park System were seen as Gaylord’s top strengths. Other strengths, according to the vote, included:
• Gaylord is the County seat;
• Geographic location;
• Volunteer base;
• School system;
Results of the vote also indicated Lake Titloe, with its cleanup efforts, was Gaylord’s top opportunity. Other leading opportunities for the City, as seen by those attending the session, included:
• A community meeting place;
• A trail system;
• A retirement community;
• Downtown rehabilitation;
Cultural diversity was voted as the City’s top challenge. Many in attendance believed that there is room to improve relationships with the ethnic community.
Other top challenges, according to the vote, included:
• Condition of Lake Titloe;
• Creating a shared vision;
• Attracting young families to Gaylord;
• Mobile home park;
• Downtown rehabilitation;
• Business activity;
The two-hour community visioning session was hosted by the Downtown Revitalization Committee and conducted by Region 9 Executive Director Reggie Edwards.
According to Chuck Klimmek of the Downtown Revitalization Committee, the visioning session was an attempt to get the community working together toward a common goal.
“I think it was a great success,” Klimmek said. “I’ve heard numerous good comments about the event. The challenge now is to keep the momentum going.”
By determining a common vision, the City would have a better opportunity to land the services of the Minnesota Design Team, Klimmek explained. This is a professional volunteer group of architects, landscape architects, urban designers, planners and other experts in design and community development. Its mission statement is: To use design to help small Minnesota communities develop a shared vision of a healthy future.
The Minnesota Design Team has helped more than 80 communities around Minnesota to develop shared visions for their physical and environmental design. The design team recently worked with the City of Le Sueur.
According to Klimmek, the next step in applying for the services of the Minnesota Design Team is to “lock in” a number of people who would be willing to submit a letter of support. He said the an application for the Minnesota Design Team must be submitted by the middle of January.