What’s next for Cumming?

Residents gathered at Cumming City Hall to talk about Hometown Pride and the future of their community! Below are the notes from the discussion. If you would like to help work on these ideas, or one of your own, join the Hometown Pride volunteer team. We are looking for people who want to be occasional volunteers (to help 2-3 times per year) or committee members (meet monthly). Or feel free to just drop us a line to share any ideas you have for Cumming! Contact us here.


Things we like about Cumming:

  • Has a small-town feel, but still “8 minutes from everything”
  • Bike path
  • New flower pots in park and on street are a nice addition
  • Cumming tap and the Distillery both attract people to town
  • Legion and Parks group both doing positive things

Things we could do to improve Cumming:

  • Add an attraction/amenity at the trail head, and paint lines in the parking lot
  • Fix up the alley behind the Legion/Tap
  • Provide more ways to meet your neighbors: music in the park? yoga in the park?
  • Take advantage of “bike nights” at Cumming tap, perhaps by hosting a complementary community event at the same time, or using the opportunity to promote Cumming
  • Purchase better Christmas Lights for decorating the town
  • Provide more ways to share community news (not just the post office)
  • Connect the bike trail to the new part of town (and to Norwalk?)
  • What can bring people in the newer developments into “old town?”
  • Do more Christmas events: Pets with Santa? Tree lighting in the park?

What would you add to this list? What can we do to ensure a great future for Cumming?




Carlisle residents share their ideas for Hometown Pride

20 residents from Carlisle and the surrounding area came together to kick-off the Carlisle Hometown Pride program on Thursday, January 18th. Discussion topics included possible improvements to parks and trails, increasing activity and event offerings, and community beautification.

About a dozen of the attendees volunteered to serve on the new Carlisle Hometown Pride committee, which will meet monthly to plan and implement community improvement projects for Carlisle. Below are the full discussion notes from the Jan 18th meeting.

Do you want to be part of Carlisle Hometown Pride? Contact us.



What we like about Carlisle:

  • Sense of Community
  • Schools
  • Trails
  • Pool
  • Small Town Feel
  • Library
  • Businesses and Restaurants
  • Natural Beauty
  • Close to Metro
  • Growing
  • Parks
  • Community Sense of Pride
  • Citizen Engagement
  • Community Events
  • We Celebrate our History
  • Family & Friends
  • Regional awareness
  • Youth athletics
  • Fire, EMS & Police Service


Opportunities for Change in Carlisle/New Things we would like to see:

  • Dog Park
  • Coffee Shop
  • Rec Center with Multi-purpose room
  • Yoga in the park
  • Fiber Internet
  • More activities for adults and kids
  • Public art
  • Beautification in public spaces, like the street right-of-way
  • Community clean-up
  • Yard of the month program
  • Trail activities for kids & adults
  • SRNP trail head with water, bathroom, tables, etc.
  • Community Social Events, like a “bike night”
  • After school programs
  • Places for young kids/families
  • Public transportation to Des Moines, Trolley service within City
  • Better way to cross the highway for kids
  • Downtown revitalization
  • Downtown Park (in progress)
  • Way to connect to your neighbors
  • Centralized point of communication for community happenings
  • Park improvements – add playground and other equipment to parks so that they offer the full range of basic park options
  • Sand Volleyball and Pickleball courts
  • Holiday events – bring back “light up Carlisle”
  • More partnership between community and school
  • Add a Welcome Sign
  • Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts involvement in community projects
  • More volunteer opportunities

Hartford residents discuss community projects

Residents from the Hartford area joined the Hartford Community Betterment committee last night to discuss ideas for new community projects and events in Hartford. Notes from the discussion are below. The Betterment Committee will work with community volunteers to decide which projects to pursue.

Do you want to get involved in Hartford Hometown Pride and the Hartford Community Betterment Committee? Contact us.

Photo Jan 09, 7 01 57 PM

Photo Jan 09, 7 38 52 PM

Norwalk holds first Hometown Pride meeting

A group of 15 volunteers attended the first meeting of Norwalk Hometown Pride on January 8, to discuss the goals of the program and brainstorm ideas for community projects. The group discussed what they like about their community and what they would like to change. See the notes below for an overview of the group’s ideas.

Norwalk kick-off meeting notes

About a dozen of the meeting attendees signed on to be part of the Norwalk Hometown Pride committee, which will meet monthly to decide which projects to pursue, and how to get them done!

If you would like to be part of the Norwalk Hometown Pride committee, or would like to volunteer for Hometown Pride projects on an as-needed basis, contact us. And/or review our Volunteer Interest Survey to see the volunteer opportunities available.

Meeting notes (text version of above photo):

What we like about Norwalk:

  • Welcoming people
  • Business loyalty (residents are loyal to Norwalk businesses)
  • New welcome signs
  • Golf courses
  • Great school
  • Clean
  • Close to Des Moines/Downtown/Airport
  • Lots of amazing local businesses
  • Safe community
  • Good balance of old and new
  • Great EMS
  • Great Senior Care facilities
  • Nice, cared for homes

What could we improve or change in Norwalk?

  • Improve Hwy 28 median (aesthetics)
  • More activities for adults: like a pickle ball court
  • Improvements to Main Street/North Avenue
  • Add better connection to bike trail
  • Senior center activities
  • Public art
  • Publicize farmers market more
  • Add trees, especially by cemetery
  • Little free libraries
  • Add light poles or other improvements on Sunset Blvd
  • New Welcome sign
  • Slow traffic on Sunset off Hwy 5
  • Expand aquatic center and/or add a YMCA
  • Work with city on creation of new downtown/town-center


Help Shape the Future of Norwalk!

Do you care about Norwalk and want to help make sure it keeps getting even better? Our community is changing quickly, and the new Norwalk Hometown Pride program wants to bring our residents together to figure out what we can do to improve our town and boost community pride!

We’re forming a team of people who live in Norwalk and the surrounding area who will help decide what’s next for Norwalk, and then help make it happen.

Our first meeting will be on January 8 at 5:30 pm at the Norwalk Library (1051 North Ave). All individuals who want to learn more about the program, and/or want to volunteer, are welcome to attend.

What will our group do exactly? Hometown Pride teams in other towns have undertaken projects as diverse as installing a new playground, rehabilitating old homes and buildings, beautifying the streets with public art, and landscaping streets and public places. Once formed, the Norwalk Hometown Pride team will determine our specific goals – there is no limit to what we can accomplish when we come together!

There are two ways to be part of Norwalk Hometown Pride:

  1. Join the committee. We will meet once a month to set our goals and mobilize volunteers to implement them.
  2. Sign up for our volunteer roster to help as-needed. Volunteer needs may include painting, fundraising, landscaping, event planning, publicity and more.

Please contact us to volunteer or to learn more.

Norwalk Hometown Pride is a part of a county-wide initiative, Warren County Hometown Pride, that includes 7 communities. It is supported by the City of Norwalk. Hometown Pride is a also a state-wide program: read “What is Hometown Pride” to learn about the Hometown Pride program across Iowa.

Volunteers wanted for Carlisle Hometown Pride!

Carlisle is a great place to call home, and the new Carlisle Hometown Pride program wants to make it even better!

Join the Carlisle Hometown Pride team and you can help decide what we can do to improve Carlisle, and then help make it happen.

Past Hometown Pride teams in other towns have undertaken projects as diverse as installing a new playground, rehabilitating old homes and buildings, beautifying the streets with public art and landscaping, and attracting new businesses to town. Now it’s your turn to decide what Hometown Pride does in Carlisle – there is no limit to what we can accomplish when we come together!

We will hold a meeting for all interested volunteers and potential committee members on January 18 at 5:30 pm at Carlisle City Hall. All are welcome to come learn more about Hometown Pride.

Review the Carlisle Hometown Pride flyer for more information on the program and how to volunteer. You can also contact us and read our “What is Hometown Pride” overview to learn more.

Join Indianola Hometown Pride!

Fill out our volunteer interest form! (due February 9)

Do you want to make a difference in the future of Indianola? The Warren County Hometown Pride program is looking for volunteers to be part of the Indianola Hometown Pride team. As a team member, you’ll help identify what we can do to make Indianola a better place to call home, and then help make it happen!

Indianola Hometown Pride will hold a meeting for all interested individuals on Thursday, February 8 at 5:30 pm in the Council Chambers at City Hall (110 N First Street, Indianola). Click here to view the agenda.

What will Hometown Pride do? It’s up to you! Past Hometown Pride teams in other towns have undertaken projects as diverse as installing a new playground, rehabilitating old homes and buildings, beautifying the streets with public art and landscaping, and attracting new businesses to town. The Indianola Hometown Pride committee (made up of residents like you) will decide what projects we undertake, and will partner with existing organizations to make sure we are adding to on-going community efforts, not duplicating them. There is no limit to what we can accomplish when we come together!

Please review the Indianola Hometown Pride volunteer form for information on available volunteer roles and how to join the committee or volunteer team! Individuals interested in joining the committee must fill out and submit the volunteer form no later than February 9, 2018. For more information, contact us or read our “What is Hometown Pride” overview.


Milo Kick-Off Meeting

More than a dozen people met in Milo on November 13 to discuss Hometown Pride, and share their ideas for the future of their town! Residents talked about Milo’s strengths, and its opportunities for change. The results of the discussion are summarized below.

All residents of Milo and the surrounding area are invited to join the Hometown Pride volunteer team. Contact us to learn how.

Milo’s Strengths

  • Strong Lion’s Club
  • Churches
  • 4th of July and County Christmas events
  • Library
  • Parks
  • Little League/Lil Warhawks
  • Walking and biking path
  • Community Center
  • Fire department / EMS
  • Bandstand
  • North and West entrances to town
  • Diverse businesses: Restaurant, Locker, Vet, etc.
  • FFA
  • Mud Run event
  • Positive attitude
  • City employees

Milo kickoff

Milo’s Opportunities

  • Library expansion
  • Casey’s expansion
  • Need to promote ourselves more: “Cheer squad”
  • Use space above the community center
  • New businesses needed
  • Memorial rock improvements
  • Community branding (signature flower?)
  • Add overnight accommodations
  • Rural cemetery signage, map and beautification
  • City website
  • More youth involvement
  • Monthly community kids day
  • Electronic community entrance sign
  • Create welcome program for new residents

Milo kickoff 2

What is Hometown Pride?

Warren County Hometown Pride brings neighbors together to build a sense of community, create and improve public amenities, and celebrate what makes our hometowns great.

7 participating towns in Warren County have a Hometown Pride team of local volunteers who work together to identify and complete projects that will improve the quality of life in their town and boost community pride.

Here are a few examples of projects that our Hometown Pride teams are working on: building a new playground, planning a music festival, coordinating a city-wide clean-up, installing town entrance signs and wayfinding signs, building a Veteran’s memorial, painting murals, delivering welcome gifts to new residents, promoting tourism, and a lot more. Click below for a full list of our work:

Participating communities in Warren County are: Carlisle, Cumming, Hartford, Indianola, Milo, New Virginia, and Norwalk. Warren County Hometown Pride is part of a state-wide network of Hometown Pride programs across Iowa.

Contact us to learn how to join your local Hometown Pride team or visit our About page to learn more.

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