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Vital Connections

Learn more about topics important to Minnesota communities through articles, videos and podcasts. Find stories and information to help you get engaged in your community. Help others better know, decide and act.

Community features

An educator walking with two emerging leaders in a community

Greater Minnesota’s communities respond to calls for racial understanding

How does a community become more welcoming for everyone? Learn some reasons to create change and read stories from communities that are taking action to be more inclusive.

Space between stimulus and response

Space between stimulus and response

[video] Have you ever said something that you later regret? Get ideas on recognizing and controlling how you respond emotionally.

A Minnesota State Fair grounds sign reads 'Hang in there Minnesota'

Festivals and events during a pandemic

[podcast] Festivals and events around the state and country have seen many changes in 2020. Listen as we discuss how organizers and community members can weather the storm.

All articles, podcasts and videos

Find content on topics that include:

  • Community development (e.g. attracting new residents, evaluating programs and local foods)
  • Community economics (e.g. local economies, retail, retaining businesses and workforce)
  • Leadership and civic engagement (e.g. assessing and developing leaders, facilitation, building trust and engaging communities)
  • Tourism development (e.g. learning about visitors and planning festivals and events)

[video] What are your top strengths? Watch a short video on using your strengths to fuel your energy. Learn about tools to assess your strengths.

[video] During times of stress, what can help you bounce back quickly? Watch our video and learn some tips and tools around stress and resilience.

The year 2013 brought improved economic news to much of Minnesota, but a few towns took some hard knocks. Crises like these create tough times in local economies.

[podcast] Minnesota's business community is on the front line of addressing workforce issues. Listen as we explore what is happening and how companies are supporting immigrants and immigration policy.

[video] Have you ever said something that you later regret? Get ideas on recognizing and controlling how you respond emotionally.

[video] Feeling overwhelmed? Watch and learn about a series of videos on stress.

In the 1950's, most rural Minnesota communities could afford to go it alone. But in the 2010's, rural economies are growing more diverse, more regional and more global.

[podcast] You may be dealing with new emotions as we transition to more social lives and lose daily patterns and routines. Listen as we discuss strategies to help overcome uncertainty.

When our educator focused a series of podcasts on Minnesota's workforce issues, she didn't realize covering the issue would take six months — and then some.

Visitors come to your community with expectations about what they will do and see in your area. But what are those expectations exactly?

Looking beyond a conventional analysis of rural Minnesota of decline and stagnation to one of a rural rebound.

[video] How can your subconscious mind help your community? Learn about RAS (Reticular Activating System) and how it can help focus you on the positive in your community.

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