Lakeside Welcomes 29th Chautauqua Network Annual Meeting Attendees

Posted on July 19, 2012

Lakeside Chautauqua is honored to host and welcome attendees of the 29th Chautauqua Network Annual Meeting from July 21-24. Please help us provide a warm Lakeside welcome to the attendees as they arrive and explore Lakeside.

The Chautauqua Network is a group of organizations and individuals committed to the communication and implementation of the Chautauqua concept.

Members of the 14 remaining Chautauqua communities in the U.S. and Canada gather each year at the Chautauqua Network Annual Meeting to share best practices, provide updates on each community, discuss new developments and identify ways to further promote the Chautauqua Trail.

A different Chautauqua community is visited each year. Next year, the Pennsylvania Chautauqua in Mt. Gretna, Penn., will serve as host.

In the 19th and 20th centuries, “Chautauqua” was an educational and cultural movement that built communities and supported individuals in the development of their full potential spiritually, intellectually, culturally and physically.

The concept spread throughout rural North America as hundreds of Chautauqua communities were established.

However, by the mid-1920s, the movement began to dwindle due to the rise of the automobile and radio, as well as access to education. Only a handful of these communities survived the decline.

Today 14 thriving Chautauqua communities across the U.S. and Canada make up the Chautauqua Trail. The Chautauqua Trail is a cultural heritage trail linking these communities as part of a new initiative to better promote the 21st century Chautauqua Movement.

The demand for authentic cultural experiences and continued learning opportunities offered in these communities is on the rise. Chautauquas pioneered the concept of lifelong learning over a century ago.

This collective experience, combined with the explosive growth of cultural heritage tourism, uniquely positions Chautauquas as more and more North Americans seek to improve their lives through continued personal growth.

The Chautauqua Trail is an initiative launched by the Chautauqua Network, which facilitates interaction and communication among its members to further their preservation, growth and development. More than a million people visited Chautauqua communities in the U.S. and Canada last year, taking advantage of religious, educational, cultural arts and recreational programming. All Chautauquas share a common heritage and have similar qualities. However, each Chautauqua is also unique with regard to length of season and programming approaches. While at Lakeside, attendees will have the opportunity to take part in the Lakeside Chautauqua experience through the various programming that is scheduled. Steve Hartman, a "CBS News" correspondent, will give a presentation about his own personal experiences and lifelong encounters with Lakeside Chautauqua. In addition, the Chautauqua Lecture Series this week will focus on the beginning of the Chautauqua Movement with tent and circuit Chautauquas, as well as the future of the Chautauqua Trail. In 2011, the Chautauqua Trail website was launched to connect, inform and educate others about the renaissance of the Chautauqua concept. The website allows guests to learn about the history of the North American Chautauqua Movement, read the latest news and events, and use an interactive map to identify and link to other Chautauqua communities across the U.S. and Canada.