Traveling Musician Sings Phoenixville’s Revitalization Praises


Image of Phoenixville via the Chester County Planning Commission.

She’s seen a thousand towns give revitalization a shot, but Phoenixville was one of the few that caught her eye.

After 25 years of touring the nation, singer and songwriter Dar Williams is offering her perspective of what makes a small town thrive.

In “What I Found in a Thousand Towns: A Traveling Musician’s Guide to Rebuilding America’s Communities,” Williams sings the praises of Phoenixville and seven other communities, particularly their ability to rally neighborhood support for ambitious projects, according to a NewsWorks report by Peter Crimmins.

She also described what doesn’t work, including money and willpower alone.

“People said, we want our towns to thrive, so let’s just love each other. That does not work,” Williams explained. “You can’t just decide that you’re going to get along and like your towns.”

But having fun together could be a secret ingredient.

“The ability of a town to have fun together is resonant. It’s a real indicator,” she said. “That’s what you have with [Phoenxville’s] Blobfest. … Sometimes that fun thing spurs on that next level of organization and sophistication.”

Read more of Williams’ observations about Phoenixville and community revitalization in general on NewsWorks here.

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