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Drawing on the close relationship Madison has with its agricultural neighbors, CNU 19 built on the theme of “Growing Local”. The conference explored linkages that urban communities have with local food production, the food economy and the infrastructure that has developed around this symbiosis.
It’s not just about growing food though. The conference extended the “Growing Local” theme to include the nurturing of non-agricultural local economies and local connections — from Madison’s burgeoning bicycle industry and bike culture to its commitment to community involvement and participation, and pursuit of growth that reinforces a distinct sense of place. The region’s balance of vibrant urban life, rural charm, and natural beauty made Madison an ideal backdrop for CNU 19. Speakers included author and urban historian William Cronon, Trek CEO John Burke, Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz, Congressman Blumenauer, the six original visionaries of CNU, Seaside, FL founder Robert Davis, and many, many more.