2023 Annual Conference - Registration now open!
You are invited to attend our 44th Annual Conference organized by the Executive Committee of the Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia, which was held from October 18-20, 2023 at the historic Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia.
The conference began Wednesday afternoon with a workshop and walking tour showcasing revitalization efforts in Downtown Salem. Dinner Wednesday night will be in Mary's Barn, preceded by a welcome reception at 5:30 p.m. at the Salt Pond Pub. Thursday morning focuses on affordable housing, followed by a session on urban development areas. The lightning round sessions after lunch will address leadership programs in rural Virginia, the Virginia Land and Energy Navigator (VALEN), and regenerative agriculture. Following a short business meeting (open to all attendees) a session on energy plans and opportunities will be held, followed by the annual hike up the mountain at 5:15 p.m. A reception in Mary's Barn begins at 6:45 p.m. followed by dinner, a silent auction to raise funds for the scholarship programs (bring an item or items that highlight your community) and entertainment including our ever popular annual awards ceremony!
The conference concludes with Friday morning sessions on ethics and legislative issues. Unless noted, all sessions will have AICP Certification Maintenance (CM) credits. *CM Credits for the 2023 conference should be available in the late November - early December timeframe.*
Virginia RPC is an organization that is dedicated to identifying, publicizing and satisfying the unique planning needs of small towns and rural areas. Every year the RPC Executive Committee works hard to organize a conference where rural planning professionals from around Virginia and surrounding states can discuss important rural planning topics and network to better promote and sustain resilient rural communities.
2023 marks 44 years that RPC has been hosting an annual conference for rural planning professionals. Over the years, we have supported the next generation of rural planners by offering an annual scholarship to planning students to continue their studies. Since 1999, RPC has awarded over $14,000 to college students at Virginia universities with planning programs. In 2022, RPC launched a new mentorship scholarship to allow for rural localities to send a manager along with a new staffer.
Please visit our Past Conferences page to see what kind of conference topics and activities we have covered in prior years.
The 2023 conference is expected to provide full conference participants with around 10-12 CM credits - including legal credits. If your two-year AICP reporting period is almost over, you'll appreciate these CM credits!
The draft conference agenda can be found here:
Are you a rural Virginia local government manager/supervisor (i.e. mentor) who would like to bring a new planner/staffer (i.e. mentee) to the conference but can't justify the conference expenses of sending more than one from your locality?
Then this scholarship is for you - two for the price of one! Often times, rural localities cannot afford to send more than one staff person to a conference. To address this, RPC is pleased to offer a manager's scholarship to cover the 2 full days of lodging and meal expenses of the manager (a value of over $350). The only expense the manager would pay is the full conference registration of $125. The manager's scholarship is contingent upon the full registration and lodging of the staff attendee. Both parties must attend the conference to be eligible. Please complete the below form and email it to RPC Chair, Tripp Little for scholarship consideration - which shall be awarded on a first-come, first serve basis. UPDATE: As of 8/14/2023, both scholarships have been awarded and no further applications will be accepted this year.
2023 Mentor Scholarship Application
Conference Registration Information
All attends need to register for the conference online by clicking the link below. The conference registration does not include meals or lodging. Mountain Lake Lodge includes meals with the lodging costs - so paying for lodging also pays for your meals. If you do not need lodging, but desire to join us for meals, day attendee registration options are available below.
Online registration closes Thursday, October 12, 2023.
2023 Conference Registration Options:
- Full Registration - $125: This option is for those that also have lodging at Mountain Lake and whose meals are already included in their lodging costs.
- Day Attendee Option 1- $205: This option is for those who do not have lodging at Mountain Lake and includes one day of meals (i.e. for those attending just Thursday). Cost includes the conference registration and meals for 1 day (including applicable meal taxes).
- Day Attendee Option 2- $285: This option is for those who do not have lodging at Mountain Lake and includes two (2) day of meals (i.e. for those day attends attending the full conference). Cost includes the conference registration and meals for 2 days (including applicable meal taxes).
- Life Member Registration - $100: This option is only available for those RPC members who have been designated Life members by the Executive Committee.
Important Note: If you are a sponsor, please check with RPC Chair, Tripp Little before registering for the conference. Silver sponsors receive one (1) complimentary registration and Gold and Platinum receives two (2) registrations.
2023 Conference Registration Payment Options:
- Online Payment: The website processes credit card payments securely via PayPal. Credit cards accepted include from VISA, MC and Discover. You do not need to have a PayPal account to use PayPal - just click the "Pay with Debit or Credit Card" option once select pay online via PayPal.
- Payment by Check: If you prefer to pay by check, please click the “Pay by check” option when you are registering and print and mail the invoice with a check made payable to: “Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia” to the RPC Treasurer, Ms. Sharon Angle, P.O. Box 2721, Staunton, VA 24402.
Lodging & Meals Information
Lodging for the 2023 conference is at Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia. Lodging is separate from the conference registration cost. All meals are included in the lodging costs. The 2023 lodging rates are:
- 1) When making reservations, please mention that you are attending the RPC conference.
- 2) For those that desire to arrive earlier than the conference or stay later after the conference ends, Mountain Lake Lodge will be offering the same lodging rate two days before and two days after the conference.
- 3) Mountain Lake Lodge requires a first night's room deposit that is guaranteed with a credit card when reservations are made.
- 4) Hotel check-in is at 4:00 PM and check-out time is 11:00 AM.
- 5) RPC's block of rooms will be released on July 21st. Once our block has been released, RPC cannot guarantee availability or the state rate at this point.
- 6) Lodging Cancellations/ Refunds: In order to receive a refund on the deposit provided when your reservation was made, all cancellations must be made within 14 days prior to arrival. Any cancellation after this date results in the loss of the one night deposit provided when the reservation was made. This is the policy of Mountain Lake Lodge and RPC has no control on lodging reservation refunds.
7) Reservations cannot be made online. You must call the below number to receive the special RPC lodging rate:
Mountain Lake Lodge Reservations:
(540) 626-7121 EXT. 8
Reference " Rural Planning Caucus" Lodging Block
Who Else Has Registered?
Becoming a RPC sponsor is easy. We offer sponsorship at multiple price-points, and Silver, Gold and Platinum Levels come with conference registration(s). If you are interested in learning about our conference sponsorship options, please visit our Sponsorship webpage.
Thanks to the following organizations who have already agreed to be 2023 sponsors: