Inspiring cohousing conference and Fenway to boot!

I had a great time in the Boston area June 12th through 15th at the 2008 National Cohousing Conference. I learned a tremendous amount from cohousing pioneers who have been working in the cohousing trenches (some for 20 years by now), living their ideals, and spreading the enthusiasm about this innovative approach to neighborhood living. I also met folks from around the country (and Canada and England) who are more or less in the same mode I am: learning as much as possible about how to make cohousing happen in their home community.

I had the opportunity to talk at length with several of the founders of the US cohousing movement: Jim Leach of Wonderland Hill Development Company (Boulder, CO), and Chuck Durrett and Katie McCamant katie-mccamant-receives-cohous-award.JPGof McCamant and Durrett Architects (Berkeley and Nevada City, CA).

Katie and Chuck literally “wrote the book” (Cohousing: A Contemporary Approach to Housing Ourselves) introducing cohousing to North America in 1988. I had a chance to eat dinner with Chuck and Katie, talk about Buffalo Commons Village and the forming group here in Northfield, and picked their brains about how to avoid pitfalls and bring a successful cohousing project to fruition as expeditiously and successfully as possible. Katie received the Mid-Atlantic Cohousing Developer of the Year Award at the dinner.

Equally wonderful was a late afternoon and evening spent in venerable Fenway Park, green-monster.JPGone of baseball’s true shrines. For a lifelong baseball fan who has never been to Fenway, and who still mourns the loss of old Met Stadium, it was an idyllic four hours or so. It was also a great game for the Red Sox nation, with a grand slam from Mike Lowell, two two-run homers, and a raucous win.
All in all, what a great way to spend a long weekend!

4 Comments

  1. Posted June 24, 2008 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Bruce,

    I’m glad you enjoyed the conference as much as I did. I’ve helped run some previous cohousing conferences, but this time I got to be a participant (and speaker) and engage with people on a deeper level.

    I’ve been following the blog posts about Buffalo Commons (particularly since at the time I was off to my wife’s High School reunion in Northfield, _MA_, and the location mistakenly caught my eye), and will be eager to see your next step. Do you have any community-development or real-estate development professionals involved yet?

    Raines Cohen, Cohousing Coach
    Planning for Sustainable Communities
    at Berkeley (CA) Cohousing

  2. Posted June 25, 2008 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    Good to hear from you, Raines. We do not yet have any professionals involved yet, but are exploring our options for doing so.

    I hope to see you in Seattle next summer!

  3. Kathy Blough
    Posted July 12, 2008 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Fenway!

  4. Posted July 14, 2008 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    Fenway was indeed a baseball fan’s dream, Kathy. I hope those of you in the Red Sox Nation realize how good you have it!

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