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At home in the heartland

At the end of October, more than 100 journalists from across the United States descended upon Elizabethtown, Ky., just south of Louisville.

What was the big story? There wasn't any.

The journalists were simply doing the same thing they've done for so many years: getting together to document daily life in a town as a means to cultivate their story-telling skills. This week-long summit, called Mountain Workshops, is run by Western Kentucky University, a school known for its photojournalism program.

Now in its 35th year, the workshops represent a year of planning, which paved the way for the week-long summit where 68 participants collected over 50,000 photos and hours of video. Dozens of faculty and staff worked with the participants to push them to gather stories in the most compelling ways.

You can see a slideshow highlighting many of the best images here.

So while there wasn't a 'big' story, per se, an exhausted but inspired group of journalists walked away having published 70 stories, encapsulated by this video which highlights some of the best work done during the week.

Additionally, check out this behind the scenes look at the massive undertaking of running the workshops: