Reinventing Pilger

Community visions for rebuilding Pilger were sketched out at a town hall meeting in late September, 2014. Small group discussions focused on ideas to replace community infrastructure, businesses and civic buildings after a June 16 tornado destroyed much of the town.

Leading a special task force gathered to direct ideas for rebuilding the town were Joe Ferguson of Norfolk, plus representatives from the University of Nebraska along with other state-wide non-profits. The Rural Futures Institute acted in response to the community driven request and the RFI assisted in convening additional University expertise to help the community envision their desired future.

During the evening, those on hand met in small groups to discuss what they saw as priorities for the Pilger community. After an establishment of key priorities, task forces were formed to determine next steps to make the priorities a reality.

“We think what’s happening here is a demonstration of what happens when small groups meet with hope and vision,” said Chuck Schroeder. “When they’re confronted with difficult circumstances, they are almost certain to succeed. They arise above devastating destruction and demonstrate that the human spirit is more powerful than the circumstance.”