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Rural

Rural America is Growing, But Only Near Big Cities And Scenic Areas

For the first time in seven years, rural America’s population is growing. The annual U.S. Department of Agriculture report “Rural America at a Glance” found the increase — only 0.08 percent — mainly in scenic rural areas like the Rocky Mountains, more densely populated rural areas and rural communities that are within about an hour’s drive of a major city. Essentially, places where people still have access to urban amenities or can go hiking, biking, fishing or skiing.Rural Midwestern counties continue to lose people, and are getting older.

These wild monkeys thrive in Florida—and carry a deadly virus

n the heart of central Florida lies Silver Spring State Park—a large patchwork of forests and wetlands with a spring-fed river flowing through it. One of Florida’s first tourist attractions, the park was once known for its scenic vistas and native wildlife. But for the last 80 years, the park’s biggest draw has been its monkeys.That’s right—Silver Spring State Park is home to at least 300 rhesus macaques, a monkey native to south and southeast Asia.

Rural margins diverge in Republican, Democratic Gubernatorial wins

In states where Republicans won close governors’ races, rural GOP support was a big part of the pattern. The Democrats who won gubernatorial races in Wisconsin and Kansas made rural more of a contest and protected their metropolitan advantages.The performance of Democratic candidates in Wisconsin and Kansas looked quite different than the races in Florida and Georgia. In Wisconsin (see graph at the top of the page), Democrat Tony Evers beat incumbent Republican Governor Scott Walker 2 to 1 in the core counties of major metro areas. Evers also won medium-sized metropolitan areas.

Missouri dislikes democrats but likes their policies

The Show Me State elected a Republican U.S. senator and, by roughly the same margins, turned around and approved ballot initiatives that reform elections, raise the minimum wage, and legalize medical marijuana.

Rural resilience calls for new practices in land use

The ability to be resilient is a practical necessity for residents of rural areas. But the long-practiced goal of self-sufficiency now has a broader definition that calls on residents in the region to adapt to change, regional planning experts note.Resiliency could be be applied to land use practices, according to a proposed regional program, such as expanding maple sugar operations and the ability to grow new varieties of fruit trees.

6-foot gator, pythons removed from Kansas City home

 Deputies in Kansas City, Missouri serving an eviction notice on Wednesday morning got quite the surprise when they found some illegal animals at the home.  A six-foot, 150-pound alligator, three pythons, a rabbit and several “domesticated” animals, including cats, were found at a home in the Kansas City, according to the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.

Mississippi project builds on cultural strengths

If you want to build something strong and beautiful, get creative people involved.  That advice works whether you are building a house, a piece of art, or even a regional economy, says a Delta nonprofit leader who is helping develop the business skills of “creatives” in Mississippi.“I think some people forget how innovative the Delta really is,” says Tim Lampkin, the founder of Higher Purpose Co., a community development nonprofit based in Clarksdale, Mississippi.  To help make that happen, Higher Purpose Co.

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