For The Love Of Small Towns

“Well I was born in a small town And I live in a small town Prob’ly die in a small town Oh, those small – communities…” So begins the 1985 hit song “Small Town” by John Mellencamp. I heard this song the other day and got to thinking about the small town where I grew up. Well, I actually lived on a Wisconsin farm five miles from the town–more accurately, village–of Stratford; but it’s where I went to school, where …


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6 comments on “For The Love Of Small Towns

  1. Another WI boy….East Troy, living one block from the Catholic church, foot race with Dad home from church on Sunday morning, walking to school in the winter on the tracks laid out by the snowmobiles, going downtown to the dime store and “the hut”, an ice cream store, and who can forget “the burger family” at the A&W? Still living in a small town, now in CO, but not a simpler world!

  2. Karey Poole on said:

    This story hits home. I live in a small town of Bishop, California. I grew up in a suburban area, 14 miles away and now as an adult have chosen to raise my children here. Everything you said is so true, some of the details you gave, I thought you were talking about Bishop! Thank you for sharing your story and your passion for small towns, like you said, there is a lot to be said about growing up in a small town.

  3. Nope, I’m a true suburbanite. I got some serious culture shock when I spent the Summer in Natchez, MS. We went bar-hopping and found the SAME PEOPLE were in each place we went to. It was like you were at the same party but the scenery kept changing. But what a great place full of historic homes and friendly people!

  4. Judy on said:

    I salute Grand Marsh, Wisconsin – home of the Corn ‘n Tater Festival – started by my dad and a bunch of his buddies in 1963 with vegetables grown on our farm as a way to bring awareness and hopefully growth to our little farming community. Dad is buried in a little cemetery across the road from that farm, which became part of a large corporation, but my memories of those years on that land live on! I have come to realize we were a poor family, in dollars…and yet so very rich in every other way!

  5. George Birmingham on said:

    Grew up in suburbs in shadow of Baltimore MD. The farm is gone now for 35 plus years; loved that place. Trying to go to a small town called Old Town MD to have a home with some acreage to it.

    • Randy on said:

      Thanks George and all you others who commented on this blog. George I hope you achieve your goal of getting to Old Town. It took me a long time to learn how to live with neighbors on either side of me, just yards away. Closest neighbor growing up was more than a mile away. I think I could get used to that again pretty easily. Reason I’m so late responding to these comments is I was away at a grand-neice’s wedding and it was so great being around all that family I stayed an extra day…without my laptop! We all wanted to get some land somewhere and start a family “ranch” – maybe someday…

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