Kunia, Hawaii – Gov. David Ige can recall spending youthful summers working at the cannery near the once sprawling Del Monte pineapple plantation in Kunia on the island of Oahu. The school bus he rode every day passed Kunia, and when he and his classmates saw a flashing yellow light there, they knew they were close to home.
Fallon, Nev. – When Kelli Kelly arrived in this western Nevada desert community in 2009, the seemingly endless austere landscape might have given her pause. Her boyfriend at the time – who has since become her husband – suspected she might be put off. Fallon has a population of around 9,000 and Kelly recalls his warning that relocating there from her San Diego home could be “a relationship killer.”
Back in the day – nearly a century ago – the OK Theatre in Enterprise was a shining light in eastern Oregon, hosting events both unique and routine. There were plays and musicals at the 350-seat, single-screen theatre and traveling Chautauqua, an adult education movement in the early 20th century that brought musicians, preachers and academic lecturers to rural America.
Wasilla, Alaska – Last year, Kolten Conan was scrolling through his Facebook page, and he happened upon photos of a house under construction. He already knew a thing or two about building homes: he’s now 21 and when he was just a little boy, he had scampered among laborers at construction sites around his hometown of Wasilla, fetching boards and helping out with seasonal work.
Oakland, Calif. – In 2008, collapsing home values addled Americans across the nation, bankers were drawing scrutiny and the stock market was collapsing. It was difficult to understand the cause and to know where to keep one’s investments safe.