A federally designated Promise Zone, Letcher County, KY, located in central Appalachia, is experiencing the economic and social effects of reliance on a single industry that is now leaving. The local population is faced with forging its own economic future, one that depends on collaboration, risk, and creativity. Recently, intergenerational entrepreneurs who participated in Appalshop's arts training programs during their youth have helped lead a downtown revitalization effort by opening new businesses that contribute to vibrancy on Main Street. This project will formalize the burgeoning trend of arts programming in the county as a cultural hub to boost the regional economy through increased tourism and creative entrepreneurialism.
photo credit: Rachel Hagen
photo credit: Cowan Community Center
photo credit: Appalshop/AMI