Tag Archive for: Small Town Association of Residents

Really… The STAR is born!!!!   The Stasko Agency is proud to announce the new division of their company, called STAR (Small Town Association of Residents)!  We will focus on helping smaller towns, communities, and neighborhoods connect residents and neighbors with their local businesses, schools, and municipalities in a unique and productive way, bringing pride in the community, tourists for local businesses, and prosperity for everyone.


Our Experience in Building Stellar Communities

You will know the work The Stasko Agency has done with developers, retailers, restaurants, and municipalities with brand publicity and PR strategy. For 25 years, we have been doing PR and publicity for our beloved clients and at the heart of the work is always connection.  We have loved connecting our clients to their customers, retailers to their shoppers, restaurants to their patrons, and municipalities to their community.

HUNI Hour in the LoHi Neighborhood

We loved creating the connections that transformed one of Denver’s neighborhoods, Lower Highlands (LoHi), into a premier urban destination.  Many remember the local Happy Hours, which were for the residents that were members of the RNO (Resident Neighborhood Organization) called HUNI (Highland United Neighborhood Inc.)  These Happy (or HUNI) Hours were just one example of the monthly events that put LoHi on the map and helped change this neighborhood into a thriving and in-demand area to reside and do business.


We Spotted a Trend: Gen Z is Moving to Small Towns

We are now seeing a new opportunity that we are excited to share.  2020 was the tipping point for so many people.  Given all the big changes in the world, many of us were able to focus on what really matters in our lives – and many of our urban neighbors have been choosing to move to smaller towns and communities where the pace is slower, their dollar goes further, and they can live and work rather than just work to live.  People are moving from big cities to small towns to find peace and a new way of life.

After Covid, people are noticing that the urban corridors are getting crowded, and the traffic is becoming worse. There is a trend where these folks are starting to find these small towns and wanting to settle there.

Just follow the Gen Z’ers because they have a knack for finding beautiful small towns with picturesque mountains, working remote jobs, and having a sense of place-making – designing the very place in which they choose to live.  They envision themselves retiring in these smaller towns and these small towns need to know that Gen Z’ers are arriving with their pets, their plants, and a whole lot of possibility.  They have ideas they want to share about the potential they see and they want to help to make it better.


So you see the reason for creating STAR! Our services will assist in building relationships and connections with the residents who are responsible for making such towns, communities, and neighborhoods welcoming, and charming. Our sole mission is to help small town residents to connect with one another, remind them of why they live there, and inspire them to share their communities. We also help city officials see that residents and neighbors are the influencers that are right in their own backyard.

Bridging the Connection Gap

We have found in our experience that when the residents are connected to the visions of those who serve their city, they feel excitement and part of a bigger plan. They feel like it truly is “their town, community, or neighborhood.”

When communities are brought together, there’s a sense of pride – being proud of living in a neighborhood or small town that is so well connected, where neighbors know and help each other on a regular basis, where the business owners know the local’s names. A familiarity with the history and the environment of that area is created, which brings a welcoming feeling to those who are visiting!

When Communities Unite, Pride Ignites!!

How to connect with STAR

If you are looking for ways to bring your community together and reach your local residents in a new and unique way, please contact us at info@staskoagency.com and type in STAR in the subject line.

We look forward to showcasing your influencers from your own backyard.

The Vision of STAR

The Vision for STAR, on a larger scale, is to help County Commissioners, Chambers of Commerce, Business Groups, and Economic Development Directors, use the power of the town residents and neighbors to promote the towns’ events and vision, and to share the benefits and sites of the area. STAR will be a vital teaching tool and a resource for the smaller towns that are experiencing challenges for many reasons, to reignite the spark, one town at a time.







Is there a trend coming to Colorado?

The big cities are no longer holding their zest for life anymore as more Generation Zers, the young population who were born between 1990-2010, start to move into rural America.

They are moving across the United States in droves, specifically in the Midwest and Southern states

According to Thrive Global, since the pandemic, there has been a growing interest in rural and suburban lifestyles.

Rural America offers cheaper housing, easier access to the outdoors, and a greater impact on the local community. 

RentCafe mentioned that in light of cheaper housing, Gen Zers look for  “a vibrant local scene that feels authentic and closer to home for these young adults who are starting out in life in times of great uncertainty and change.”

As more Gen Zers move into rural towns, these towns need to be ready for the migration of younger people and offer what bigger cities could not: a sense of community and impact that Gen Zers crave.

Why should small towns be excited about more Gen Zers coming into their communities?

Suburban and rural communities should be thrilled that the younger generation wants to settle in smaller towns!


The boost to their economy will not only be improved, but when there’s more money being spent locally, the township can offer more to meet the needs of their growing population.

Another benefit of why communities should be excited is that their history could be preserved and cared for as the older generations pass on.

Has the trend caught on in Colorado?

In 2020, Boulder, Colorado, was the number one choice for Gen Zers to rent apartments, so Colorado is on the minds of our young people.

With its richness of history, great mountainous landscape, and diverse population, Colorado gives Gen Z everything they are looking for. 

That is why Small Town Association of Residents (STAR) searched for and found two people who moved from the big city to small-town life to start enacting their dreams and desire in a small town in Colorado.

Helena Cappon and Tom Orr moved from Denver to Walsenburg, 45-minutes south of Pueblo, Colorado, with the goal to start a business and make a lasting impact within the community.


From Big City to Small Town Impact: How Two People are Making it Happen

Meet Helena Cappon and Tom Orr, two Daniel Scholarship Recipients and Graduates from Denver’s prestigious college, the University of Denver, who moved to a small town where they both share their desire and vision to start a business.

Tom grew up in the small town of Walsenburg a few blocks away from where Helena’s family had just recently purchased a home.  

After a year of friendship and the start of the pandemic, Helena and Tom found themselves living together in the small town of Walsenburg, cooking, baking and enjoying all the other hobbies they had in common.  

Knowing that they were both meant to be a driving force of positive change (hence why they were chosen for the Daniel Scholarship), they knew they wanted to do something in Walsenburg that would not only benefit themselves but the folks around them too.  

They decided to combine all their passions and experience in cooking and business to open a Pizza and Ice Cream place called Gub Gub’s. 

Their plan is to revitalize a significant and historically essential business of an old gas station into a campy, fun 60s-style casual eatery with a plaza surrounding the building.  

Eventually, they would love to incorporate community events to maintain traditions and enact sustainable, positive change that benefits Main Street, businesses, residents, and the town as a whole.  

Helena and Tom want to be part of the planning in the community and help work the other residents into becoming more community-focused.

They plan on using this business to start a small scholarship program with John Mall and La Veta High Schools, so that other young people in the community have the same opportunities that both Helena and Tom had with the Daniels Fund Program. 

Construction on the restaurant is planned to start in Fall 2022.

Small Towns can become Communities of Change

If you’re a member of a small town where you’re seeing more Gen Zers coming in, know that you have an opportunity to watch them flourish and help them to bring your community together. 

How could your community benefit from more Gen Zers moving into your town?