WENATCHEE, WA, October 27, 2014 —The Initiative for Rural Innovation & Stewardship (IRIS) will highlight success stories that connect and strengthen the communities of Orondo, Waterville, and Douglas next month when the non-profit organization launches a new series, “Talk About a Place!”IRIS has worked with volunteers, teachers and students from the Waterville School for the past few weeks to record interviews with area residents that highlight the historical connections among the communities and how they have adapted to changes over time. Other volunteers from around the region are transcribing the interviews that will then be used to inform discussions, including input from local scholars, at two public presentations.Free public presentations and discussions of these stories are scheduled from 7 – 9 p.m. onWednesday, Nov 12 at the Waterville Federated Church and on Thursday, Nov 20 at The Grove Recital Hall on the Wenatchee Valley College (WVC) campus. Interview excerpts will also be shared on IRIS's Listening Post Network, a digital storytelling program that functions like a community scrapbook of success. www.gatheringourvoice.org/listening-postScholars participating in this year’s “Talk About a Place!” program include educator and Pateros School Superintendent Lois Davies; visual artist and teacher Martha Flores; WVC sociology instructor Richard Brinkman; and historians Darold Wax, Oregon State University professor emeritus; and Carli Schiffner, Vice President of Instruction at WVC.“Talk About a Place” complements two existing IRIS programs - Gathering Our Voice and the NCW Community Success Summit. The series will move to a different community of North Central Washington each year, along with the annual IRIS Community Success Summit, until 2020 when a larger regional Success Summit is planned for Wenatchee.IRIS is proud to acknowledge the following partners and sponsors for the 2014 “Talk About a Place!” program including Humanities Washington, the Town of Waterville, Port of Douglas County, Douglas County Museum and Wenatchee Valley College.Contact Nancy Warner, IRIS Executive Director at 509-881-1812, nwarner@applecapital.net to volunteer or to get more information about the program.The Initiative for Rural Innovation & Stewardship (IRIS) fosters sustainable rural communities in North Central Washington by gathering and sharing success stories that enhance a sense of belonging, inspire action, and build community. We believe that thriving communities in a healthy environment create success. On the web at www.irisncw.org.

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