Little towns often appear peaceful and quiet, but that doesn't mean there are no controversies brewing beneath the surface. In fact, a recent Reddit post by user u/Pessimistic_Soviet demonstrates quite the opposite.
It invited residents of small communities to share local gossip and the responses did not disappoint. From debates over property rights to political scandals and corruption, the thread serves as a reminder that drama is not exclusive to big cities.
#1Surprisingly enough, there isn’t one at the moment. In our 3k pop town everyone has come together recently because one of our local homeless veterans lost his pet cat. The entire town has banded together to try and find her and even hated enemies are planning out search parties together.
Image credits: jcp1195
#2There's a llama on loose in this town. The police can't catch it. The humane society can't locate it. And no one is claiming ownership of it. It's been sighted in several locations on the outskirts of town where there are multiple small farms. Sometimes it wanders into town and peruses through people's yards. People have complained to the police who claim they can't corral it as it's the Wyle E Coyote of llamas. It just doesn't want to be caught.
Image credits: CatboyInAMaidOutfit
#3My parents live in a tiny Greek village that has a grand total of three families (including my parents) and currently they're trying to rectify the fact that our dog killed our neighbor's chicken.
Image credits: SwingGirlAtHeart
#4In our small English village, someone has managed to knock over one of the speed limit signs at one end of the road. It's a mystery, everyone is trying to guess who did it/what happened. Was it intentional? Except it's not a mystery in our house. It was my sister and she hit it when she swerved out of the way of an oncoming car (narrow country road). We'll keep acting like we are as clueless as everyone else though.
Image credits: OHDFoxy
#5Not current but it needs to be documented in history - the serial Catnapper.
A couple lost their cat so they went knocking door to door in our town, and came across their cat crying in a random home's front window. They call the police who arrive and find 50+ missing cats, along with a f*****g graveyard of cats in the garden. Some that had been missing for up to 7 years. It culminated in the catnapper, a 50+ year old woman, stuffing as many cats as she could in a car and going on a police chase through our little town.
Most of the cats were identified and taken home, a very small few went to rescue centres, and the catnapper is currently going under mental health treatment. Apparently she just took home any cat she saw while on a walk for the last 7 years.
This happened about a couple years back but I had to tell the tale.
Image credits: Creditive
#6The eccentric millionaire that owned every building in down town and used them to house his extensive rock collection died like 15 years ago and they still haven't figured out what to do with all the rocks.
Image credits: Woktosha3
#7My family thought that the term “Karen” being used on Facebook specifically meant the woman named Karen that works at the gas station near me. I had mentioned her once at home and my mom was like “Oh everyone hates her on Facebook right now! They all think she’s a snitch!”
Image credits: royhawek
#8Small town with 3000 inhabitants. Everyone knows each other, everyone knows where everyone works, who is related to whom, and so on. Still, my cousin doesn't know who is the father of her child.
Image credits: mulberstedp
#9People here in my town of 396 still upset that the local Christmas tree was taken down and thrown away with all the lights still on it.
Image credits: Onlykitten
#10Our local brewery has begun regularly hosting a drag show and the locals are going ballistic.
Whether or not to continue allowing a flock of sheep to graze on the town green (with a petting area for lambs).
Some think the sheep do a fine job of keeping the grass under control (and fertilized) - others want landscaping professionals to do the job.
Image credits: Back2Bach
#12Our local utility is finally going to start fluoridating our water, and all the old farts and Karens are out protesting on Nextdoor and Facebook. And we’re like “wtf, we haven’t been fluoridating this whole time? What year is this?!”
Image credits: grumpy_hedgehog
#13My small home town is currently upset because the Amish don’t pick up their horse c**p as they drive down Main Street in their horse & buggy.
Image credits: dsheckler08
#14Local mcdonalds wants to build a drive thru, some people are dead against it, but others think its long overdue as the mcdonalds is always crowded. The people against believe it'd ruin the character of the area. I'm not sure where I stand.
Image credits: dantheman280
#15If the local horse dentist is actually a licenced horse dentist
Image credits: MsKonduct
#16a couple promissed a lot of cakes and fancy breads to the local festival, and didn't deliverd
everyone is mad at them for the last 2 weeks
Image credits: ChangeWinter6643
#17In my wife's home town of about 2k people, the road side produce stand guy is in a feud with a new SECOND produce stand that just opened. The original produce guy trained the new guy for a while apparently then fired him, now the fired guy opened his own spite produce stand. They got in a fist fight and now the whole town has taken produce stand sides. The mayor and the only police officer in town are also involved and their wives are fighting. It is truly the dumbest version of Hatfield's and McCoys, but no less redneck.
This blew up, I have asked my wife for the screenshots she had. These are what the original guy sent the new stand guy, which he then posted on his FB. What he wrote is 10x better than anything I wrote I promise.
Image credits: delux561
#18One guy started a home addition without getting the required permitting then threatened to beat up the mayor when confronted about it. The mayor backed down and let him do it.
That spread around town so others have also threatened the mayor to be able to build things they shouldn't so now some people in town are just doing whatever they want with their yards and houses which is starting to cause problems as they dig and cut various things underground because of course they aren't calling to get surveyed for where all the underground infrastructure is
#19They’re still trying to figure out who is Black.
The village has 249 people. On the census everyone reported white except one person who reported biracial or something and now the demographics show that the town is .7% Black.
Image credits: Technical-Bet-2023
#20LoL The Mayor has a personal feud with this one guy that has an emotional support pig while living in the village. Housing farm animals are illegal within the village.
Image credits: Far-Resource-819
#21A guy wanted to bury his parents on their (parents’) slightly rural, totally out of the way, virtually-no-neighbors property, but the village said no way. We don’t do that here. We’re classy. So he went to the state for permission to build a funeral home/crematorium instead, and he built a giant mausoleum with both their caskets right on the corner of the property where everyone and their grandma can see it when they drive by! And he has zero plans to actually turn this into a functioning business. It’s about half done, no landscaping, and construction vehicles parked all over the place. Gotta hand it to him!
Image credits: Axel0812
#22Someone mentioned opening up a yoga studio. People are losing their minds because yoga is not Christian and of another religion.
Image credits: sluttypidge
#23About a year ago my hometowns favorite eating establishment burnt down. Lotta people pooled money to get him a new spot. A failing car salesman converted his place to a restaurant and partnered with the beloved restaurant owner. Business was thriving, food was fantastic and it was THE place to get food. The failing car salesman was talking and then some to the local bicycle behind his wife's back and was giving her free drinks and the two would stay at the place way beyond closing time. One of her kids went on her phone and was scrolling and found nudes on her phone of car salesman. The kid sent it to his friends and the friends sent it to even more people. Now basically the entire town has seen this red headed man nude wearing cowboy boots. Beloved restaurant owner quit and business is no longer booming because he has no cook. Car salesman is getting a divorce and closing the restaurant and this happened only 4 days ago.
Edit 1: Wow! Thank you everyone for the upvotes! This post has more upvotes than the population of my hometown (1.7k)
Edit 2: sorry for the confusion regarding local bicycle. I told this story as if it's to someone in my town who would just understand so that's on me. Reddit we gotta talk, a lot of you are trying to stand up for this lass, good on you, but she's a lady with 21 kids with 19 different lads and all but 4 have a reputation in the town. The 4 that don't are because the fathers have full custody of them. She's really not a very redeemable character in this situation.
Edit 3: a few asked for the photo to be uploaded and what the heck!? Lol you guys are wild!
Edit 4: so the beloved restaurant owner left the car salesmans restaurant partnership because of this fiasco. Some say there was some tension about how the business was ran and some say there was tension because he was cheating on his wife.
Status Update: the latest rumor off the old grape vine says the restaurant owner got a killer deal from the local real estate guy and will renovate an old closed business downtown into his new restaurant! Fingers crossed because he really knows his stuff.
Image credits: _Username-Invalid_
#24One guy wanted to open a gas station but the property wasn’t zoned for it. The town wouldn’t change it for him, so he put toilets on all of his properties and used them as flower planters. The town has tried many different strategies to get rid of them, to the point where the made a law and then tried to enforce it. They got their butts sued off and the toilets still stand. To be fair, he keeps them in great condition and replaces any broken ones after storms.
Edit:It was a dunkin donuts not a gas station
Edit 2: another interesting thing, the local high school mascot is the steve the sandstoner, so all of our apparel says stoner pride.
Link about it https://www.vice.com/amp/en/article/ep4p3p/let-this-man-keep-his-toilet-gardens
Image credits: tuc-eert
#25Thousands of crabs washed ashore dead but nobody really knows why, I think they blamed wind turbines at one point.
Dogs are now getting really sick and there’s warnings for people to stay away from the beach but nobody knows why it’s happening.
#26The city I live in (around 10k residents or so) doesn't allow food trucks to operate outside of things like festivals. There has been a push to change that, and, coincidentally, majority of most vocal people against them are restaurant owners.
Image credits: grindstone_hollow
#27I was back in my old small home town over Christmas.
The local newspaper carried the headline “Woman abused in local park”
I was initially shocked that such a thing could happen in my safe town, until I read the detail that a woman had asked some teenagers if they were really old enough to be drinking those beers, and they told her to bugger off.
Front page, lead headline.
Image credits: BetamaxTheory
#28We have a Starbucks trying to open in my hometown, but half the city doesn’t want it to happen saying it’ll kill the small businesses around it. Literally being built like two doors down from a local coffee shop. The towns up in arms about it.
#29The town just spent a LOT of people's tax dollars to create a new logo and slogan.
The logo? It's an Satellite image of the town with the main roads of the square being highlighted to look like a tic tac toe board.
It's seriously a BIG controversy right now, because anyone with Google earth and Ms-Paint could've made it.
Edit: People have been asking for the link. Here you go!
Image credits: B_Bibbles
#30Nothing current but I have a great one from 5 years ago:
So we had a guy who was quite the Libertarian. He owned a gun store in town and pretty much kept to himself. He will be known as LibGuy
The problem started when he decided to have chickens for his own eggs but he lived within the city proper which had a rule against farm animals within the city (this is a rural farming area I live in). One of the city council members (he shall be known as A-hole) discovered he had chickens a few weeks after he got them and the city sent him a letter telling him he had to get rid of them. Well, he was not going to go down without a fight. So he spent some time looking into things and discovered the A-hole who reported him lived within the city and he also had chickens.
Well, this of course caused a bit of a scandal. The city ended up claiming there was a grandfather clause for anyone who had livestock within the city prior to the rule change 17 years ago. The problem with that was that clause applied to the A-hole's father, not the A-hole who lived at the same address. Needless to say, the war was on!
A couple of weeks go by and the town cops are messing with Libguy over petty s**t. Libguy somehow gets a recording of A-hole calling the police and lying to them about what Libguy was doing. Police now want to charge Libguy for some absurd ridiculous recording law that really doesn't apply since it was someone with the police dept who gave him the tape not that he stole it. This gets blown up to the point where the bigger cities news crews are now showing up to city council meetings that are being called to address this issue. These meetings are getting absurdly blown out of proportion and in all honesty somewhat slimy and jicky in how the city is handling it. Libguy subpoenas the city council emails to show there was a concerted effort to f**k with him and cover for A-hole.
Well in the course of getting the Emails it was discovered that there was a sexting issue going on between three of the city council members. LMAO, believe me when I say this did not involve people that would be considered sexy. all three (2 women and 1 male) were married, 200lbs plus, and in their 50's. I mean Emails about double-dildos, pegging, swinging...etc..It was hilarious.
In the end, the Libguy got the last laugh. he lost his chickens but found a loophole where he could actually own Llamas in the city since they were not considered [livestock. So](https://livestock.So) he put up a fence all around his yard (ugly chicken wire fence) just tall enough so the Llamas could not get out by jumping. People actually would go by walking their dogs and pet the Llamas. The problem though was that Llamas s**t like cows and it stinks in such a small enclosure. This went on for about a year until he sold his house and moved (it stunk for at least a block around his property and he lived right behind the town's grocery store). Two of the council members involved got divorced over the sexting issue and the third one sold her bar because of it.
This was the infamous chicken scandal that plagued my town of 4K for 3 years.
#31I live on a dead end street in the woods. There are only 7 houses on our street, so everybody knows everybody. And for the most part, everybody likes everybody… with the exception of Frank. Frank f*****g sucks. Frank has 3 or 4 s****y vehicles parked on the narrow street in front of his house, despite having ample room to park the vehicles in his driveway. He blows all of his leaves into the street and leaves them there. He is loud, obnoxious, and rude. He burns s**t in a barrel in his backyard, despite a borough ordinance against it. And Frank gets away with everything, because Frank’s brother is one of only five cops. It sucks.
Anyway, one other thing about Frank is he has a royal a*s ton of feral cats that live on his property. They set up shop under the s****y shed behind Frank’s house and just crank out kittens. The cats visit our home and f**k with our indoor cats through the windows, are constantly setting off the neighborhood dogs, and leave small animal corpses *everywhere*. Well, someone finally snapped and had been systemically catching Frank’s cats and taking them to the humane society. It took him a couple weeks to notice, but Frank has finally noticed that he is short 5 or 6 cats. He has knocked on everyone’s door to ask if they have his cats, or if we know who took his cats. Everyone knows exactly who took the cats, but nobody says d**k about s**t because everyone hates Frank and his f*****g cats.
F**k you, Frank.
#32Population of 1000 here... some of the power got knocked out bc of a racoon doing some dumb s**t on a power line.
Image credits: Fallen_Muppet
#33About 2 years ago the mayor of the town I live in got caught with drunk driving his lawnmower down main street at around 2 AM about 6 weeks after being elected.
Edit: I can't wrap my head around the fact that my mayor getting drunk and driving a lawnmower would become one of my most upvoted comments but here we are.
Image credits: ThatDude8129
#34So this one has been ongoing for a while, but... The Nutcrackers.
My hometown (where I no longer live, but still have family so I keep apprised of local matters) has decided, in a bizarre bid to increase tourism, to become The Nutcracker Town.
The reason? An older woman donated her nutcracker collection to the historical society. Something like 2,500 nutcrackers. I think because her kids told her flat out they would dispose of them after she died if she did not make alternate arrangements.
So, the town decided, well, they had all these nutcrackers on display. This could be good for tourism. We could be known for something.
People were bewildered and predictably upset. A lot of townsfolk don't *want* to be the nutcracker town. All the local businesses have been pressured to buy these giant expensive cardboard nutcrackers from the local print shop. They are *terrifying.*
There's been general outcry. Facebook groups, the whole nine yards. And still the town persists. Still there are these hollow-eyed giant cartoonish cardboard nutcrackers everywhere you look.
Edit: Someone guessed it, so I have effectively triangulated myself (internet safety fail 101). If you want to see some local news on the subject, [look no further.](https://www.keloland.com/news/eye-on-keloland/history-center-hopes-to-have-more-nutcrackers-than-people-in-luverne/)
Edit 2: Okay, since many people have asked (and not everyone can access the news sites), I've attempted to upload a picture of [the cardboard nutcrackers.](https://i.imgur.com/lVQ9zUd.jpg) Let me know if it doesn't work and I'll give it another go!
Image credits: sleepyhollow_101
#35So our controversy has been resolved…But the town I grew up in had a Beefalo (cow Buffalo cross breed) escape from a slaughter house. It spent months running wild in the wooded areas around town living off whatever it could find to eat. I had friends who were out for drives sending me pictures of their beefalo encounters like it was Sasquatch. This went on for months.
The story got picked up by a big YouTube channel and went viral.
Edit: Thanks everyone for the awards! Didn’t expect to wake up to this. Glad you all enjoyed the story.
Image credits: SectorZed
#36yall have like decent answers and in my small a*s uk village it is legit just this person being villager of the year for the 7th year in a row
#37Trash pick up is a constant battle.
So get this.
Everyone I talk to wants roll carts. Across all sorts of backgrounds, ages, and so on. However the rich side of town thinks that roll carts might hurt the aesthetic of their neighborhood. Some city council members live in that area, but no one seems to want to bring it to a vote.
Okay, fine. How about normal trash cans? Nope, same issue.
Okay, how about we mobilize the citizens and get the a measure approved that will force the city council to vote on it? Yay we did it! Oh wait the deciding voter, who had been elected on a pro-roll cart basis, decided to be out of town the day of the vote.
The solution? City labeled trash bags that you only get so many of each year, and which you need to pay for more if you go over your allotted amount. They will not pick up trash if they are not in the specific trash bags.
Of course the various animals we have living here who like to eat trash see the city bag and go "oh no, cant eat that!" Not.
The neighborhoods look like garbage multiple times a week because bags get split open either by animals or people overfilling them so they dont run out of bags. The city will not collect split bags.
The city council also passed a measure saying they wouldn't speak on/debate trash collection for X amount of time.
Trash collection is now on our questions to ask about when looking for a new house.
#383 kids stole s**t from the local shop, werent even wearing covid masks so we have perfect pictures of them
#39The woman who just got elected mayor owns most of the property downtown, and all the open seats on city council went to her employees. Can’t wait to see the corruption in action.
#40They just built a new Verizon in town, but someone started a rumor that it was also going to be a Panera Bread. Someone went as far as to mark it on Google Maps as a Panera, even though the building is clearly a single store with Verizon signage.
#41They took down a memorial to a person involved with the Confederacy, but it doesn't seem to have fixed any of the problems faced by the black community, so now the white people don't have any more ideas.
#42Two places make dill dip. One accused the other of stealing the recipe
#43holding PG&E responsible for burning down half the county last summer
#44The location of a veterans memorial. There is a lot of construction and the city wants to move the veterans memorial (just a plaque) about 150ft to a new spot where it will have a little park and sitting area. Half of the Vets and some conservative city council members are P****D and making all sorts of noise. City is confused because it’s actually a better memorial, only 150ft away from the original.
City council elections begin to use this as their platform. Facebook fights galore. It was amazing.
#45Delilah from the love song request radio show that's been on for like 30 years lives here and has been trying to convince all the downtown business owners to paint their store fronts pastel. It's a real kerfuffle.
#46Someone changed the local Facebook page from "SmallTown Community Page" to "SmallTown Antivaxxer Group". The ensuing debates and confusion as to how the page moderators had their accounts hacked and who was behind it. I s**t you not, the current chief suspect is the moderator of the rival SmallTown community faceboom group. Lockdown has given some people too much time on their hands.
#47Travel baseball. There is a new organization in town that is absolutely bloodsucking money out of parents of 7-12 year olds and they have no clue.
#48A woman found a dog and tried to find the owner for a day or two. She then took it to a rescue. Owner of dog post looking for dog and she let him know the rescue. Owner calls rescue who now will not return dog due to owner negligence. Woman who found dog is now getting s**t on.
#49Yards were dug up two years ago to lay to-the-house fiber in preparation for fiber being dug down along the road.
Still no fiber along the road.
EDIT: Holy c**p this blew up. Guys, stop, I can't download all these replies until I get fiber!
Image credits: CalydorEstalon
#50Well we are still talking about the police raid made this summer that found 90kg (yes 90 godamn kilos) of unspecified drugs (it was amfetamin).
And also that this years christmas tree was ugly on the side towards the pizzeria.
We are about 1100 people living here
*corretion: it turns out it was mostly cannabis! Sorry about that!
#51I don't live in a small town but my small bit of the city were amused today. A woman posted in the local neighborhood Facebook group to say a woman had knocked on her door at 6.25am. The reason was she had tracked her missing husbands phone to the address. He had not come back the night before. The man was not there and the poster was a bit concerned. This led to much chat about burglaries and whether she should post the ring doorbell footage. A man then joined the thread to apologise. It was the missing man. He had got drunk at the football and ended up falling asleep in the house next door to the woman who posted on Facebook. Much hilarity.
#52A woman on the city council constantly spouts about cleaning up the admittedly horrible drug problem in town and goes on sanctimonious rants on social media about it.
Her son is the main dealer in town. He lives in her house. It's not a secret at all and he gets arrested for s**t all the time and she gets him off the hook every time.
Full disclosure I don't live there anymore thankfully but most of my family does.
Edit: I honestly wouldn't be surprised if it is to thin competition. Although to be perfectly honest the town is only like 1,000 strong and he really doesn't *have* competition. Mostly because people know his mom can pull a few strings and f**k you over or just run you out of town.
#53An 81 year old woman got bit by a bear whilst trying to protect her dog
#54County scale: the council voted to redistrict based on maps that they made themselves. It was vetoed in favor of one made by an outside firm. They overrode it. Gerrymandering to hell and back
Town scale: They're gonna demo the empty Sears building and I'm trying to find how and when so we can go watch it implode or something. Not controversial just wild.
Very local scale: the 102 year old pillar of the community died and two pastors were fighting over who got to preside over the service. Neither could achieve a victory so they just. Recited the same prayers after each other. It was weird.
Extended family scale: At this funeral I mentioned the "guy with the bulldozer" who digs the graves and was informed that's my second cousin. I blurted out the only thing I know about him, which is that he owes my parents 400$ for double charging them for digging my grandfather's grave. His wife was there. We don't know if she heard me or not. My mom isn't pleased.
#55County judge race. The incumbent is a certified idiot.
#56Local pizza place fired all its staff mysteriously last summer and closed for a few weeks. Naturally, rumors fly right away. Turns out the Mormon owner (who liked to parade his family as the paragon of small town virtue) was having affairs with multiple staff members. The wife kicked him out, fired anyone who knew, and then rehired and trained a bunch of new staff.
One of the fired staff members then opens her own pizza place to rave reviews in the nearest town over. OG pizza place announces it will close at the end of the year - right after they run a promo for gift cards. People are pissed they only have a few weeks to use the gift cards they just bought (and were planning to give as Christmas presents) After weeks of record sales, OG pizza place announces they're staying open after all and now people are pissed they used up the cards they'd intended to give as gifts.
Tl;dr: one pizza owner is disgraced, his wife kicks him out and takes over, then his mistress opens a competing business. Then a bait & switch about closing leads the entire town to be pissed off.
EDIT: I just got off the phone with my dad and he told me that new pizza place was actually founded by TWO mistress. I straight up didn't believe him and he sent me the website for the new place. Yep, Mistress #2 is a manager. And their pizza names are all spinoffs of OG pizza place.
#57Town of about 1800. The girl's volleyball coach got a Dwi. The school's principal went to pick her up from jail, and was arrested for dwi himself. Somehow it got out that these two (both married) were having an affair.
#58While fleeing another hit and run, and possible DUI, some dude tried to go full speed directly thru the middle of our town square. The problem with that is we have a big historic fountain there. Traffic is usually supposed to swerve arround the fountain, he did not. This dude in a white suv ramps into our fountain, and smashes into the center pillar. Thankfully the fountain was off for the winter, so there was less damadge, but they still have no clue how, and how much money its gonna take to fix this mess. The car was removed, but the fountain is still wraped up in its tarp a month later. Theres security cam footage of the ramp and its all anyone could talk about for a few weeks.
#59In my town there was an empty building that is being built into a bar and nightclub. Across the street is a church and the church is p****d and trying to stir up everyone by protesting a bar so close to their church building.
#60Two years ago there were horrible fires in the valley I live in. Three people burned to death, tons of houses, and businesses lost. We are still recovering. The city decided this statue https://i.imgur.com/ZlgfmPN.jpg would be the best way to honor the victims. The back lights up to look like fire. Yup a statue showing three people on fire is how they wanted to honor the victims.
Here’s an article about it [https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.kgw.com/amp/article/news/local/medford-statue-almeda-fire-controversy/283-61b9fd86-430e-4791-a201-da795347ec98]
#61Here, catalytic converters are being stolen all over town and it’s been going on for over a year.
#62My city is allegedly the most illuminated and secure of the province -more than 14,000 street lights-, but apparently there is only one security camera system and it rotates all around the city.
Besides, they're making tunnels along the train stations and when it rains it gets totally flooded