Twin Cities Transition Groups

and Local Citizen-Based Groups

The Twin Cities is a center of activity on issues that further the goals of Transition – to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to increase transit options, and improve access to food, to localize economic activity. These activities are led by units of state and local government, nonprofit organizations, and some of these activities — and more — are led by grassroots groups like Transition Towns.

In the Twin Cities, Transition groups have organized at the neighborhood level. In other places, groups have organized at the town level (like Mankato, Northfield, and now Rochester). This website provides information about the known and currently active Transition groups in Minnesota. But groups can form and dissolve at any time so check in with the contact person or their website or Facebook page before visiting. If there is not a group in your area, you can attend activities of a nearby group. Note that some activities require registration and a few activities may be for area residents only (particularly if they are funded by a neighborhood association or district council).

Twin Cities Transition Groups

Don’t see a group near you?  You can always start a group! See the pages on local group activities and national group activities to get ideas and inspiration for what your group could do.

There is interest in the re-forming of two groups: Transition NE Minneapolis and Transition MacGroveland/Union Park (TMUP). If you would like to be part of one of those groups, contact Transition Twin Cities and ask to be connected.

The Unique Role of a Transition Community

Transition provides a unique opportunity for people to expand their impact in a variety of caring, social, and even fun ways.

Community Visioning: It’s common for Transition groups to host community visioning sessions and invite people to envision what their community could be like after it has taken action to become more sustainable, prepared and resilient in the future. Community members then engage in a process called “back-casting” to identify what would need to happen at different times in order to reach those goals. (Transition Twin Cities can connect you with skilled facilitators who can assist with this process.) 

Asset Mapping: Every community is rich in some way. Some have lots of students and teachers, ready to try new things. Some have community foundations and generous anchor nonprofit institutions. Some communities have a lot of available land; some have a culture of food growing and sharing. Invite people in your community to identify community assets of all kinds and create an “asset map.” Include the skills and knowledge of people in your group.

Problem Solving: Transition is a practical, solution-orientated movement that works to address real challenges in the community. What’s going on near you? Do people need help with home weatherization, with safer walking or biking, with improved access to healthy food? What creative community actions might make a difference?

Make Change Possible: When it comes to behavior change – like starting to compost or riding a bike more often – one of the most effective strategies to make the shift successfully is social support! Role modeling is key to showing how change can happen. Social norms demonstrate that this isn’t something strange or unusual — it’s just “something we all do.” Because it’s a social network, Transition groups can bring the power of community to bear to create lasting change.

Create one-time and ongoing social opportunities: Transition isn’t “work” (at least not all work). The social connections are equally important. Groups look for ways to help neighbors know one another better with potlucks and work groups, community gardens and investment clubs, outdoor activities and movie nights. Check out pictures from the 2017 Northern Spark art installation that involved people from several different Transition groups, as well as community members!

People of every age, ability level and all walks of life have something important to contribute to the work of transitioning to a more sustainable future. In a society that segregates people in so many ways, Transition can be the place that brings all of our visions together for a positive future.

Check Out Transition Town National Partners

It can be hard to find models for the level of changes we need to see. Transition US has partnered with several organizations that provide information and new visions for the future. Reading, listening and sharing with others can be very inspiring.

  • The Post Carbon Institute host blogs, podcasts and videos that will give you the inside scoop on energy and energy policy, among other things. You can also participate in Think Resilience, a 4-hour video course explaining the challenges ahead and how we can act individually and in community to build our resilience.
  • Shareables: You’ll find many good ideas in this network where people share people-powered solutions for the common good.
  • New Stories: “We don’t live in the world – we live in our stories about the world.” What stories are we telling and how can our stories help us move forward?
  • The REconomy Project, an initiative of the global Transition Network, sharing stories of economic change.
  • The New Economy Coalition: A new economy is bursting through the cracks in our current system, focused on meeting human needs and enhancing quality of life. Learn how people are experimenting with new forms of business, governance, and culture.