Polson Heart & Soul

Launch Project Slideshow

Polson Heart & Soul Polson, Montana

Polson retains the charm and benefits of a rural Western town, but has not enjoyed the same growth or resort status of neighboring areas. It is a community rich in opportunity and in the strength of its people, but has not thrived economically since the homesteading and timber shipping days of the early to mid-1900s. Residents of Polson lead good lives, but not necessarily easy ones.

There is a new and palpable hunger for a more successful and vibrant community; the Greater Polson Community Foundation recognized a groundswell of initiatives and renewed energy in recent years and in 2010, convened area leaders to form Envision Polson!—a movement striving to engage the entire community in building a successful future.


Polson is a breathtaking town set alongside Flathead Lake at the base of the Mission Mountain Range on the Flathead Indian Reservation. The largest freshwater body in the West, Flathead Lake draws thousands of tourists every summer, doubling the town’s population to approximately 10,000.

Economic disparities are a reality for year-round residents, where the household income is about $20K lower than the national median. Believing that they could change this statistic, residents, business owners, tribal leaders and city officials came together through Envision Polson! to begin moving the needle toward a more successful and economically viable Polson.

Now the community is ready to “get in front of development” by building a culture of collaboration, being proactive and planning based on citizens’ values and aspirations.

Project Goals

  • Build successful community collaboration and diverse citizen involvement
  • Apply community’s core values to planning decisions and local government processes
  • Resolve major infrastructure issues
  • Guide land use and development code updates
  • Foster citizen leadership and youth leadership

Project Partners

Envision Polson! is a grassroots movement of neighbors working together to shape Polson’s future. Envision Polson! operates under the direction of the Greater Polson Community Foundation and a Steering Committee comprised of community and civic leaders. Polson’s Heart & Soul project was developed with the intent of directly benefiting Envision Polson! and its need to understand community values in order to be successful.

The Greater Polson Community Foundation strives to inspire community pride and unity in Polson through philanthropy and collaboration.

Citylogo_200x30.jpg The City of Polson is located in Lake County, Montana. Polson’s City Council serves as the main legislative body for the town.



Salish Kootenai College provides quality post-secondary educational opportunities for Native Americans and promotes the cultures of the Confederated Tribes of the Flathead Nation.


PSDlogo_200x39.pngThe Polson School District prepares local students to succeed in a challenging world.