CittaSlow is a movement among small towns in Europe to help improve the quality of life. It grew out of the Slow Food movement that started in Italy. Visit http://www.cittaslow.org/ to learn more.
Here is some of their basic philosophy, quoted from their site:
Good living means having the opportunity of enjoying solutions and services that allow citizens to live their town in an easy and pleasant way.
Living slow means being slowly hasty ; “festina lente” latins used to say, seeking everyday the “modern times counterpart” in other words looking for the best of the knowledge of the past and enjoying it thanks to the best possibilities of the present and of the future.
All of this will result in technological opportunities, modern solutions in communication, transportation, incoming, production and selling.
At present living and managing a Slowcity is just a particular way of carrying on an ordinary life-style rather than today’s trends.
Of course this way is meant to be, less frantic, yelding and fast; but there is no doubt that it will be more human, environmentally correct and sensible for the present and future generations; the project will respect small realities in a more and more global connected world.
Slow for a better life
We are looking for “towns where men are still curious of the old times, towns rich of theatres, squares, cafes, workshops, restaurants and spiritual places, towns with untouched landscapes and charming craftsman where people are still able to recognize the slow course of the Seasons and their genuine products respecting tastes, health and spontaneous customs….” (from Cittaslow Manifesto).
For this reason Slow Food has always sought the quality of life and made those things the main source of its success and of its worldwide expansion; Slow Food, together with those cities which mirror themselves in its ideals, have built the Cittaslow international network.
In times of “fast”, of production and of pressing velocity, carrying on such a goal seems to be an utopia; many majors coming from different towns have joined together and as well as with Slow Food in order to create the Cittaslow’s huge common project.
The movement has expanded to 100 towns and 10 countries all over the world since 1999, connecting administrators, citizens and Slow Food partners. The common goal is to have mutual experiences focusing on gourmet food, incoming, services qualities and on the environment.
This approach to living is in some ways the basis of ecotourism which also emphasizes the sense of place. If a wonderful place to live is also a wonderful place to visit, then pursuing the CittaSlow approach makes economic, environmental and social sense for communities here in the Verde Valley and everywhere.
Here in the Verde Valley, once the bread basket for Arizona, we have much to do to become a CittaSlow community. It will involve appreciating the land, the river and our cultures – and taking action to bring us closer to local self-reliance. Our Verde Valley Wine Consortium is a good beginning step. Gardens for Humanity and Verde Food Council are working on encouraging local foods to go with our wonderful wines. Verde Valley Regional Economic Organization (VVREO) is working to broaden our economic basic organically – growing the businesses we want to support out communities.
So – what do you think – can we, should we become CittaSlow communities?