Broderick Perkins of Realty Times published an article on September 9, 2010 citing that neighbors – despite the prevalence of social media – still enjoy, even prefer, engaging with one another face-to-face.
In a recent poll conducted by Pew Internet, over 2,000 adults were asked about their neighbor relations and how they kept current on community events. Perkins cites these as the results of that poll:
- Twenty percent of adults used digital tools to correspond with neighbors and stay current with community events and news.
- Forty-six percent of adults prefer to speak face-to-face with neighbors.
- Twenty-one percent discussed neighborhood matters over the telephone.
- Only eleven percent read a blog concerning the community.
- A mere nine percent email with neighbors.
- Only five percent belong to a community email distribution list of sorts.
The stronghold that traditional neighborly interaction has on many communities should be seen as a positive thing. It gives families and friends the opportunity to host neighborhood-building events, and fall, when the weather is cooling, is the perfect season for doing so.
Here are some ideas for bringing neighbors in your Nashville neighborhood together this fall.
Hold a canned food or winter clothing drive. Ask people to donate food and warm clothes at a central event. There could be cider, hot chocolate, chili and a bon fire – if your community will allow one – to keep people warm and socializing during the drive.
A community trip to help at a local soup kitchen is another charitable way to bring neighbors together this fall.
Kid’s activities are popular during the fall and winter months. Hold a small community festival with kid-friendly activities such as pumpkin painting/carving, gingerbread house building and costume competitions.
Scavenger hunts can be easily fall-themed. Have each child, or each family attending the event, put together a fall gift bag, and swap them anonymously amongst the children.
Cultivate friendly neighbor rivalry with door decorating competitions and scarecrow contests. Ask each participant for ideas on what the winner should receive, and pool your resources to provide the victor with a gift certificate to a local Nashville restaurant, theater tickets or a fall-themed gift basket.
If your community has an entryway, get neighbors together to replace the summer plants with cold-weather ones and to decorate the entrance with a harvest theme.