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Seventh Annual Eccles Family Rural West Conference

Destination: West

Park City, Utah, April 5-6, 2019

Conference Panels

Shifting Economics and Demographics: the Rise of the Destination West

1:30 - 3:00pm, Friday, April 5

Amenity migration, that is, people who are retiring or purchasing a second home, has created new economic opportunities for communities in the rural American West. But the influx of new income has also introduced a unique set of local economic challenges. This panel explores the economic considerations of amenity migration and how the new folks in town are impacting  different communities in the rural West.

Newcomers and Old-timers: Cultural Clash and Amenity Migrants

3:15 - 4:45pm, Friday, April 5

The arrival of amenity migrants to rural destinations across the West has created several cultural divides. How does a community balance long-standing local values with those of amenity newcomers, or do they even want to? This panel examines the cultural rifts created by amenity migration in different parts of the rural West. 

Public Policy and the Political Implications of Rural Migration

9:00 - 10:30am, Saturday, April 6

The political landscape of the amenity West has become quite complicated. The arrival of urban amenity migrants and their political beliefs to rural spaces has created a unique governance issue: who’s in charge here? Who teaches what to whom? This panel investigates the local political divides created by amenity migration, changing norms (or not), and possible solutions.

The Environmental Considerations of Amenity Migration: Development and Land Use Policy in the Rural West

10:45 am – 12:15 pm, Saturday, April 6

Perhaps the most overlooked impact of amenity migration is its impact on the environment. While many migrants travel to rural destinations to enjoy the natural beauty, increased development and growing traffic in these areas could put the environment at greater risk. This panel delves into the environmental, both water and land management issues, associated with amenity migration.


Rural West Conference Volume

Bridging the Distance

Common Issues of the Rural West

Edited by David B. Danbom
Foreword by David M. Kennedy

Published in cooperation with the Bill Lane Center for the American West, Stanford University
The University of Utah Press has published Bridging the Distance, a book by the Rural West Initiative of the Bill Lane Center for the American West. Edited by the distinguished historian David B. Danbom and with a foreword by Center co-founding director David M. Kennedy, the book explores the Rural West across four dimensions: Community, Land, Economics – and defining the Rural West itself. The book is the result of work presented at the first Conference on the Rural West, which took place in Ogden, Utah, in October 2012.