The Kentucky Rural-Urban Exchange is featured in The Daily Yonder

Last week, the Kentucky Rural-Urban Exchange program was featured in The Daily Yonder, a multi-media source of news, commentary, research, and features published by the Center for Rural Strategies, a non-profit media organization based in Whitesburg, Kentucky, and Knoxville, Tennessee.

The Yonder’s Shawn Poynter reached out to Rural-Urban Exchange organizers Savannah Barrett (Art of the Rural) and Josh May (Appalshop) to learn more about how the partnership between two Kentucky-based arts organizers has brought together folks from across the state to break down regional borders.

To read the article, visit:


About the Kentucky Rural-Urban Exchange:

Launched by partner organizations Art of the Rural & Appalshop, the Kentucky Rural-Urban Exchange is inspiring statewide collaboration between arts, agriculture, and small business as driving forces in economic development. The Exchange is a new approach to creative placemaking that builds a statewide constellation network and integrates key sectors in partnership strategies that address our shared social and economic future.

In the past two years, the Rural-Urban Exchange network has assembled seventy five next generation leaders from every corner of the Commonwealth to connect network, build collective impact models, and develop systems for resource sharing within local communities and across regions of Kentucky. With new partners in 2015 including the Kentucky Arts Council and Maiden Alley Cinema, the Exchange connected leaders from the coalfields of Appalachia to the cities of Louisville, Lexington, and Covington, to the river towns of southwestern Kentucky.

We have activated network members in 16 counties in Kentucky, brought together over 20 locally-owned businesses to discuss KY’s shared economic future, facilitated over a dozen statewide collaborations in sectors ranging from small business, to community development, visual arts & agriculture. These networks are committed to advancing projects that not only provide significant economic impact, but cultivate place-based development that improves quality of life for Kentuckians.

RUX at Americana in Louisville. Art making Mapping RuralUrban Connections. Photo by Aron Conaway
Rural-Urban Exchange members map their experiences in the state of Kentucky at the Americana Community Center in Louisville, 2015.
Photo Credit: Aron Conaway

In 2016, the Rural-Urban Exchange will gather in Lexington, Paducah, and Harlan County. Applications for the program will become available in March, 2016. Together, we are creating opportunities for Kentuckians to cultivate relationships across divides in order to build a more unified and equitable Commonwealth for all. To learn more about the project, visit or follow us on Facebook:

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