"To have our future kids be able to run outside and play with friends and not have to worry about cars or driving across town will be a dream come true."
- Mariah McKay
"I love cohousing because it's all about doing things together for a better and easier life. It makes sustainability less work and more fun because you add community to the equation in meaningful ways."
- Jim Dawson
"We've lived abroad and enjoy exploring different cultures and communities. Cohousing is a natural extension of these explorations. While we've enjoyed living in a great neighborhood, a move to the Perry District with its unique vibe, business offerings, seasonal farmer’s market, city park, and bike paths, seems like a good next step."
- Lockwood Family
"We look forward to the support and challenge Haystack cohousing promises for both community and sustainable living."
- Mark and Michaele
Bob Stilger and Susan Virnig
Susan and Bob met in 1970 when they were on their way to study at a Japanese university. They both ended up moving to Spokane to work at the Environmental Symposium Series at the Expo ’74 World’s Fair. After the fair, they co-founded Northwest Regional Facilitators (NRF), a community development nonprofit. Several years later they married and their daughter Annie was born in 1987. Annie’s now an ethno-biologist working for the United Nations on biodiversity and sustainability.
After leaving NRF in 2000, Bob went on to work with nonprofits in the global south and during the last six years has spent time working in Japan’s disaster area after the March 11, 2011 earthquake, tsunami and radiation melt-downs. Check out his book After Now about those experiences! After leaving NRF in the late 90s, Susan took time off to care for Annie, as well as Bob’s mom and another dear friend, as they went through their final stages of living and dying. Later through local universities, she taught intercultural communication at the MBA level and poetry writing to grade school students, as well as doing some work with Bob in Japan and continuing the design and facilitation that she’s done since the mid-1970s.
Susan and Bob are avid bicyclists, spending a week each fall on Cycle Oregon. They both love to ski, and Susan is a long distance backpacker, having hiked 1500 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail and hoping to complete the remaining 1100 miles in this lifetime.
"I’m getting older. I want to spend the rest of my life in intergenerational settings where people are building true community."
- Bob Stilger
“Community has been an important thread in my life—growing up in a small town in southern Minnesota, helping creating a ‘community of scholars’ in college, co-founding an intentional community, starting women’s groups—and I look forward to more!”
- Susan Virnig
“We consider ourselves outdoor pets and jocks, and are all looking forward to building new friendships as we transition to cohousing!”
- Sarah, Doug and their dog Cora
Christie and John Bruntlett
Christie is full of delightful surprises. She has worn many hats over the years including being a Welcome Wagon Hostess, a Realtor, and seeking underwriting for Spokane Public Radio. She served her community as a DARE volunteer and is still active with Feed Cheney. Thrift store shopping and yard sales are also favorite activities. You can count on her for whatever gadget or item you may need to borrow! Christie is a master composter and is passionate about growing flowers and organic food. She also enjoys cooking and eating produce fresh from the garden.
Christie and John enjoy traveling, and say the best part is staying with hosts in the bed and breakfast clubs they belong to. They enjoy meeting new people, as it's a lot like staying with family!
John remains active after retiring from Eastern Washington University by playing racquetball three days a week. He enjoys driving his Corvette and playing trombone in Project Joy Orchestra, Lilac City Community Band, and Spokane Falls Community Band. Attending live theater and musical productions with Christie are favorite activities, as well as domestic and international travel. They have lived in the same big house in Cheney for over 50 years and are eager to downsize into cohousing where their lifestyle will emphasize relationships and experiences rather than maintaining things.
"This is quite a journey we're taking together, and I believe we're in very good company."
"Our guest room is always ready for travelers from near and far. We look forward to the close community, shared experiences and camaraderie that cohousing offers."
- Katherine and Jerry
"I'm looking forward to learning how to bike more confidently on city streets with my new neighbors."
- Anne Stephenson
“I have learned so much about building community and the design process. This cohousing project has attracted interesting people with a variety of skills that I would enjoy as neighbors."
- Ray Owens
"I love the give and take of a high functioning community. I imagine walking into the common house and joining a spirited conversation about places I've never been or topics I've never considered. All the while young children are playing in the toddler's room and several adults are preparing dinner in the common house kitchen."
- Pat Mertens
"I'm excited about experiencing intentional intergenerational living and literally building a community from the ground up!"
- Jonathan McKay
"Many of our pursuits—reading, gardening, rowing, cycling, cooking, and even doing laundry—are solitary in nature. We look forward to sharing them with our neighbors at Haystack Heights."
- Claudine Zender
"Haystack Heights was exactly what we were looking for—without knowing it. How wonderful to find folks wanting to build a neighborhood based on caring for everyone—like the ideal village. We’re delighted to be a part of this adventure."
Being raised within the military community brought frequent moves across southern states and Europe, where Gregg first saw different (better) ways of living together. After sampling various intentional communities as a young adult, therapeutic and otherwise, he became a clinical psychologist focusing on helping injured workers. The move from Olympia to Spokane offers an opportunity to satisfy both a long held personal desire for community as well as a professional desire to address the often desperate plight of injured workers by joining a community of like-minded health providers within Providence occupational medicine.
"I love building community wherever I can and find that life is better shared with friends."
- John Gammal
"I hope to contribute to the ongoing transformation of Haystack Heights as a beautiful space from which people can draw inspiration."
- Casey Pilgeram
“It has been and continues to be an enjoyable and humbling experience getting to know people drawn to the cohousing community.”