Creative Placemaking and Its Role in Revitalizing Rural America

Lake of the Ozarks Council of Local Governments will be hosting a workshop on Creative Placemaking and demonstrating how it can play a role in revitalizing rural America and our region. Our guest speaker will be Zachary Mannheimer, the Principal Community Planner, with McClure Engineering Company.

He will be presenting information on Creative Placemaking: Economic Development for the Next Generation. Zack will share with us best practices and use specific examples of how small communities can create amenities and use new technology to grow population and economic development, both for the workforce of tomorrow and for those who have lived and worked in their communities their entire lives.

The definition of Creative Placemaking by Ann Markusen, and Anne Gadwa Nicodemus for the National Endowment for the Arts:
"In creative placemaking, partners from public private, nonprofit and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social charter of a neighborhood, town, tribe, city or region around arts and cultural activities. Creative placemaking animates public and private spaces, rejuvenates structures and streetscapes, improves local business viability and public safety, and brings diverse people together to celebrate, inspire and be inspired."
Over the past several years, foundations and government agencies have made Creative Placemaking a priority in their grant funding opportunities. This presentation will give us a better understanding of the Creative Placemaking idea and help us discover what advantages this type of planning could have on our region.

The Lake region is a great “place” to live, work, and play, and learning how to incorporate arts and cultural activities into our planning and development efforts has the potential to engage multiple generations. Creating a vision for community development with actionable activities will help our rural communities work towards “creating a place” that many generations will want to make their home.

About Zachary Mannheimer
Principal Community Planner: McClure Engineering Company
After a road-trip from NYC to 22 cities around the country, Zachary chose and settled in Des Moines in fall 2007 to found the Des Moines Social Club, an arts and educational non-profit. Since opening its doors in 2009, DMSC has hosted over 5000 arts related events and seen over 1,000,000 patrons. Founding the nonprofit from scratch, Zachary has raised over $14,000,000 in his short time in Des Moines towards the downtown project, where he served as Executive Director from 2008 - 2015.

Zachary has taught and/or lectured at Central College and Wagner College and has articles and essays published in: The New York Theater Review and American Theater Magazine, and his theatrical work and DMSC has been featured in The New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, Politico, The Village Voice, The National Journal and The Des Moines Register. Zachary has directed and/or produced over 25 pieces of professional theater and outdoor festivals. He has been awarded the 2011 Des Moines Citizen of the Year Award, 40 under 40 in Des Moines’ Business Record, 40 under 40 for the national New Leaders Council, The Iowa Governor’s Volunteer Award, and the DSM Young Professional of the Year Award in 2009. In 2016, Zachary became the Vice President of Creative Placemaking at Iowa Business Growth and recently moved to McClure Engineering as their Principal Community Planner.

Zachary serves on the boards of Iowa Public Radio, Iowa Rural Development Council and the Des Moines Heritage Trust. In addition to his nonprofit work, Zachary co-owns Proof Restaurant in downtown Des Moines. He holds a dual BA in Theater Arts and Philosophy from Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania and shares his home with his wife Sarah, daughters Mira and Fiona and son Benjamin.

About McClure Engineering Company 
McClure Engineering Company was founded in 1956. With a vision of building strong communities, MEC’s mission is to build relationships to help its clients be successful. McClure Engineering Company’s area of expertise is in guiding its clients on making long-term capital investments. The company specializes in public infrastructure and capital improvements planning in the areas of transportation, water, wastewater, environmental, structural, rail, transloading, land development, aviation, surveying, mapping (including 3D high definition scanning and UAV mapping), county drainage and stormwater management projects throughout the Midwest and nationally.

McClure Engineering Company has seven offices in Iowa, including Fort Dodge, Des Moines (Clive), North Liberty, Cedar Rapids, Sioux City, Spencer and Red Oak; and three locations in Missouri: Columbia, Lake Ozark and St. Louis. For more information on the company and services provided, email or visit

Please join us to learn more about Creative Placemaking, it is free and open to the public.
Tuesday, August 1, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.
City of Osage Beach City Hall
1000 City Parkway
Osage Beach, MO 65065

Lake of the Ozarks - Your Strategy for Business Growth

If you're interested in joining the growing community at the Lake of the Ozarks, the Lake of the Ozarks Regional Economic Development Council can help! We're here to serve as your liaison for Lake of the Ozarks area. Our goal is to make your site search as easy as possible and to provide you with all the information and resources you need to consider our community during your site search. We can also assist you with most aspects of relocating your business to the Lake of the Ozarks and we encourage you to visit our website or call us at 573-569-7420.


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