Town planning as entertainment? Chester residents invited to video talk on small town revitalization

Ed McMahon Jr.
Screenshot from Youtube TED-X talk.

©2017 Telegraph Publishing LLC

Chester residents and business owners are invited to a screening of an engaging and often humorous video talk by Orton Foundation trustee Ed McMahon Jr. titled Where Am I? The Power of Uniqueness, about the transformation of small towns in America that embrace their own special qualities.

Kelly Arrison, a member of the Chester Village Master Planning Steering Committee and the Chester Community Alliance, which is sponsoring the event, said, “McMahon’s  message is inspiring. His approach expands on all the work of residents, businesses and town officials who are working together to identify common goals for revitalizing Chester. There’s a new sense of possibility in Chester and he shows that we really can create economic prosperity without losing our heart and soul.”

McMahon is a lawyer and community planner and TED-X speaker who in December gave this hourlong talk before an audience in Manchester as part of a Vermont Humanities Council-Vermont Preservation Trust program.

The GNAT-TV video from this event will be screened for Chester at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 30 at the NewsBank Conference Center, 352 Main St., in Chester. The event, sponsored by the Chester Community Alliance, is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served and a discussion will follow.

McMahon, an authority on sustainable development and historic preservation, talks about his “Heart and Soul” approach to town planning and economic development. During the video, he presents before-and-after results achieved in communities across the country and in Vermont using this approach, showing real world possibilities for making Chester more prosperous by making it a better place to live. For more information contact Kelly Arrison: (802) 345-1326 email:

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