CoHousing Solutions Newsletter | October 2017 
The CoHousing Solutions Team is glad to share community news:

  • TIME, Inc's video and article "Everyone Needs Someone Else: Why Americans of all ages are coming together in intentional communities"
  • Fair Oaks EcoHousing and Alpenglow Cohousing reach key milestones
  • 500 Communities Trainee Spotlight: Shelly Parks, CoVision Consulting
  • Katie's Insights: Living in Abundance this Thanksgiving

Everyone Needs Someone Else
"Why Americans of all ages are coming together in intentional communities"
“We evolved to depend on our social connections,” says Dr. Vivek Murthy, former U.S. Surgeon General. “Over thousands of years, this got baked into our nervous systems — so much so that if we are feeling socially disconnected, that places us in a physiologic stress state...”

Living in a community is a way where we can begin to reweave the social ties that we once had built in to our daily lives.
Cohousing Updates
Fair Oaks EcoHousing Celebrates their Groundbreaking!
Fair Oaks EcoHousing celebrated at their recent Groundbreaking Ceremony! Years of hard work from the community members and professionals has led to this point.
As Katie said at the event, “I wish I could say that our 30 years of building successful communities had made it easier to build communities like this, but I’m afraid it hasn’t gotten easier. We can only build neighborhoods like this because of people like you (the cohousing group) are willing to commit time and money to make it happen, to show that there is a market for neighborhoods that focus on people and making connections more than cars.

While it’s taken 3.5 years to get to this groundbreaking, you are building a neighborhood that will last for decades. In the years to come, many who are not here now will benefit from your efforts, growing up and aging in a friendly healthy place with neighbors that care.”
Construction on Fair Oaks EcoHousing will start in a few weeks, with only a few homes are available. Visit for more info.
Alpenglow Cohousing Moves on Land
One of this year’s new clients, Alpenglow Cohousing, celebrated the purchase of their land last month in beautiful Ridgway on the Western Slope of Colorado. Just about this time last year, Katie got a call from the folks in Ridgway who were exploring the possibilities of a creating a community for themselves. Katie flew out in January for an intensive visit that included looking at potential properties, a public presentation, a meeting with the planning department, and a workshop with the group (and unfortunately not enough time to take advantage of the fabulous skiing in the area).
Ridgway is a small town of just over 900 residents, located between Montrose and Telluride so it was pretty easy to get a handle on the available properties. The 4.5 acre site Alpenglow has purchased had some complications that had caused its current owner to give up on his development proposal, but the group was attracted to its central “in town” location and fabulous views. Since putting the property under contract, the community has worked with a local design team to get support from the town council for their development proposal. After a fast and furious push to get a concept plan to the Council and purchase the land, the group now looks forward to growing their membership and a more focused design process in the months ahead.

If you are looking for a community with easy access to the “outdoor lifestyle” you’ll find plenty of playmates in this group. To find out more, visit their website at
500 Communities Trainee Spotlight
Shelly Parks, CoVision Consulting
Katie McCamant with Shelly Parks, a Trainee in the 500 Communities Program
We are so excited to see one of Katie’s trainees in the 500 Communities Program, Shelly Parks, start her own consulting business “ CoVision Consulting." Combining what she’s learned in the program along with her background in sales and marketing, she’s already started consulting with groups in the Seattle area. One of her projects is the Let’s Launch Workshop, where she works with groups on how they can better market themselves through more effective engagement with community prospects. She recently held this workshop with Skagit Cohousing, who said great things about the event!
Another event she is coordinating is a Cohousing Bus Tour and Workshop, featuring cohousing architect Grace Kim. On December 2, a bus full of interested and enthusiastic folks will be visiting three such communities in the Seattle region. Seats are still available, click here for more info on the event.
As an ongoing participant in the 500 Communities Program , Shelly shares her expertise in sales and marketing while learning from her colleagues in the program. To learn more about Shelly and CoVision Consulting, visit her website at .
Katie's Insights
Abundance and Living the Good Life
As the days grow cooler and we clean out our summer gardens, my community here in the Sierra Foothills (Nevada City Cohousing), soaks in the abundance we reap. We have harvested apples and pears from our 10-year-old fruit trees. We are still getting greens out of the garden, but the tomatoes are done for the year.
Recently we celebrated our annual Harvest Festival. We begin with a workday, deep cleaning the common house and sprucing up the outdoors. In the afternoon, we have crafts on the terrace where I specialize in grapevine wreaths, made from the grapevines on my porch and decorated with leaves and herbs from the garden. But alas, no one can concentrate on making wreaths until they have attempted the ever popular donut on a string contest.
Residents of Nevada City Cohousing working on their Harvest Day wreaths
After crafts, we gather for the highly competitive Chili Cookoff, along with competitions for cornbread, side dishes and dessert. Much tasting, trying again, and just one more try to make sure... Of course, the vegetarian and less spicy versions have an advantage as everyone can taste those.

Once the winners are announced, we quickly clear the floor for the dance. This is the one time a year we hire a band and a caller to lead us in “old timey” contra dances. I love to watch my neighbors of all ages dancing and playing together. 
It should not be underestimated how satisfying it is to work together with your neighbors to make the place look great. Now that we’ve had this tradition for many years, its amazingly easy to put on, everyone chipping in as they are able. All in all, a fun and satisfying day, celebrating our bountiful harvest in so many ways. Living in community may not be utopia, but it’s a pretty wonderful place to live...feeling full of abundance.
Upcoming Events
Public Presentation and Getting It Built Workshop in Houston, TX
November 17-19
Cohousing Bus Tour and Workshop with Grace Kim
December 2
Tour of three Seattle area communities. Seats still available!
Senior Health Policy Forum in San Francisco
December 6
Chuck Durrett to be a panelist and will talk about Senior Cohousing. This year's topic: "Reframing Aging." Click here for more information on the event.
Cohousing Presentation with Chuck Durrett in Spokane, WA
December 15th
We're Here to Help
We provide development consulting services to help you create your sustainable neighborhood. Our team pioneered the development of cohousing in North America, and we have helped create dozens of successful communities.
Our newest venture involves training passionate cohousing entrepreneurs through the year-long 500 Communities Program. We'll be recruiting for the next class in early 2018, with applications due June 2018.
Photo by Ed Asmus
Architecture by McCamant & Durrett Architects
CoHousing Solutions | (530) 478-1970