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
  • PEOPLE!

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

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What is Hometown Pride?

Hometown Pride is a program that brings neighbors together to improve their communities.

Participating cities and towns 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, fundraising for a Veteran’s memorial, painting murals, welcoming new residents, promoting tourism, and a lot more. Click below for a full list of our work:

7 communities in Warren County are participating in Hometown Pride: Carlisle, Cumming, Hartford, Indianola, Milo, New Virginia, and Norwalk. If you live in one of these towns, or in the surrounding rural areas, contact us to learn how to join your local Hometown Pride team.

Visit our About page to learn more.

Join the Hometown Pride Volunteer Team!

Do you want to make a difference in the future of your community? The Warren County Hometown Pride program is now recruiting volunteers for Hometown Pride teams in Carlisle, Cumming, Hartford, Indianola, Milo, New Virginia, and Norwalk. As part of a volunteer team, you’ll help identify what we can do to make your town a better place to call home, 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. But what Hometown Pride does in your town is up to the community to decide.

Each community has a committee that meets monthly to plan Hometown Pride activities, and a roster of additional volunteers who want to help out as needed for activities such as landscaping, fundraising, publicity, painting, event planning and more.

If you live in Carlisle, Cumming, Hartford, Indianola, Milo, New Virginia, or Norwalk (or in the surrounding rural areas!) and are interested in being considered for a committee or volunteering for another role, please contact the Community Coach, Lorin Ditzler, to learn more or submit our volunteer interest form here.

Warren County Joins Hometown Pride

Keep Iowa Beautiful (KIB) has partnered with the mayors of Warren County, Warren County Board of Supervisors and Warren County Economic Development Corporation in the successful five-year Hometown Pride program. Communities participating in the program include: Carlisle, Cumming, Hartford, Indianola, Milo, New Virginia, and Norwalk.

The Hometown Pride program enhances the economic and cultural vitality of communities by supporting, facilitating and furthering the implementation of community and county plans in a coordinated strategy with the assistance of a community coach.

Lorin Ditzler has been selected by the local steering committee to serve as the Community Coach for Warren County.   Lorin brings over a decade of experience in community development and a passion for small-town Iowa to her role as the Warren County Hometown Pride Community Coach. She previously worked as a city planning consultant for communities throughout the Midwest, and supported small businesses working and volunteering for multiple Chambers of Commerce. She holds an MS in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Iowa and a BA in English from Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa. She is an AICP certified city planner and a trained facilitator.

L Ditzler Headshot 2017 [original, landscape]

“The communities of Warren County are coming together to take the next step in building the future of their hometowns,” said Ditzler.  “I’m excited to learn more about the hopes and goals of Warren County residents, and to help put those goals into action.”

“We are pleased to partner with Keep Iowa Beautiful to help our communities grow and thrive.” said Rachel Gocken, Executive Director of Warren County Economic Development. “Lorin’s expertise will be invaluable for creating an even stronger sense of pride, and we are eager to see the positive impacts this program will have in our county over the next five years.”

“Keep Iowa Beautiful is excited to partner with the county, the mayors and the economic development group,” added Gerry Schnepf, Executive Director of KIB.  “As a result, 10 communities will have the potential to increase their cultural and economic vitality improving them as great places to live, work and raise a family.”

The Warren County Hometown Pride steering committee, made up of representatives of  the participating communities, will be recruiting community members to help direct the Hometown Pride program efforts in each town. Individuals in Warren County who are interested in contributing to the future success of their hometown should contact the Community Coach, Lorin Ditzler at Lorin@warrencountyhometown.com or 515-442-0723 about how to get involved in the Hometown Pride program.

KIB’s other Hometown Pride programs are in Clinton, Dubuque, Fremont, Jackson, Jasper, Jones, Louisa, Pocahontas and Sac Counties and three Des Moines Capitol neighborhoods.  This includes 68 communities and 3 neighborhoods.  Hometown Pride is funded by Keep Iowa Beautiful, through support from private donors, a grant from the Iowa Economic Development Authority and the counties and communities.  KIB is building strong communities with sustainable futures.

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