The Hillcrest Community Cooperative Story
Hillcrest Community Cooperative opened in 1970 and has grown over the years into a 88-site, resident-owned manufactured home community.
But that transition didn't happen overnight. We began the move toward controlling our own destiny in 2015. That's when, with the help of Northcountry Cooperative Foundation and ROC USA, LLC, we formed Hillcrest Community Cooperative that would, on Nov. 18, 2015, purchase and take control of our community.
Now, the resident-owned community (ROC) is not only a successful business, but also a thriving family neighborhood. The process of the resident-owned community buying the land beneath our neighborhood brought this community closer together. Not only do we know far more of our neighbors than ever before, but we look out for one another, too. And with no outside landlord to report to, we're the envy of other nearby manufactured home communities.
Our Member households elect our Board of Directors, which works with an on-site manager and also appoints various volunteer committees to help with special projects, celebrations, community improvements and more. The Board submits a budget every year, and the entire Membership votes on it and any changes to the rent before the budget becomes official. We're running the multi-million dollar business that is our community on our terms, by our rules, for the betterment of ourselves and our neighbors.
Hillcrest couldn't be better situated in an area full of natural beauty, close to the world-renowned Mayo Clinic, many esteemed colleges and universities within an hour, and a short 15-minute drive to Albert Lea Lake. Our residents enjoy walking trails, picnics, and the sounds of nature just moments from home at Geneva Lake. Clarks Grove was the home of the first cooperative creamery in Minnesota. Albert Lea, a city just five minutes away and known as the Land Between the Lakes, is a year-round recreation destination for boating, golfing, fishing, camping, snowmobiling and skiing. Albert Lea is home to Riverland Community College, the Clarks Grove Area Heritage Museum, the Marion Ross Performing Arts Center, unique shopping experiences, and a vibrant seasonal farmers market. For even more amenities and larger city opportunities, visit Rochester or the Twin Cities, both within an hour's drive from your new home. Living in Hillcrest Community Cooperative provides easy access to both I-35 and I-90, yet has the feel of a small, friendly community.
We are proud of our community and feel lucky that our neighbors are also our friends.
Ask anyone who lives in Hillcrest Community Cooperative, and we're sure they'll tell you it's a little slice of heaven.