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Old 01-04-2011, 03:53 PM
Location: Canada
5,778 posts, read 6,688,044 times
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Originally Posted by TabulaRasa View Post
I grew up on a farm on the outskirts of a village of 350. There was a post office, two bars, and a farm implement repair shop. No other services. No school, no grocery store, no gas station, certainly no other retail, had to go at least 10 miles for basic staples and fuel, and 20 + for any other retail. No police department (monitored sparingly by county), and a volunteer fire department. No mayor, although the title "village president" got traded around a bit. To me, that's a small town.

So is the town of 7,000 where I attended school in a consolidated district ten miles from there. It has schools, a hospital, police and fire departments, some industry, grocery and a little bit of retail, and it takes under five minutes to drive across town in any given direction.

I live in Kansas City, now (a metro of around 2 million), and family members in NYC think it's a small town. If I took them to my hometown, their heads would explode.
good post! Sounds like my small town except my small town was smaller, with maybe 150 people in the actual town and another 100 or so in the surrounding area. Growing up, there were two grocery stores and two garages because people just didn't travel very much. In fact the farmer across the road from my parents farmed in the 70s with horse-drawn equipment until he died. He just couldn't get used to the idea of machinery that moved like magic.

Now though, there is one grocery store that keeps changing owners because the town can't sustain a grocery store. There are two garages which have barely hung on over the years thanks to fixing farm equipment. The real business in town is the cheese factory. We're about 20km away from the 'big' city of 12,000 where you can actually buy groceries.

To me, a small town is what I live near - around 250 people. Big towns of 5000 have grocery stores where you can pick up a can of tomato soup. It's all in the perspective.
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Old 01-04-2011, 04:38 PM
Location: A Yankee in northeast TN
11,153 posts, read 14,804,476 times
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Originally Posted by TabulaRasa View Post
My personal definition involves anywhere where you have to drive to another town for the majority of goods and services because your own town lacks the population to support its own businesses and services.
That's pretty close to the way I feel about it.
A small town has between one and three grocery stores, anything less is a village and anything more I don't consider small.
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