Here we reflect on the collaborative research, engagement, and pedagogical relationships and processes that gave rise to The Other Side of Middletown, a collaborative ethnography written by a team of faculty, students, and community participants. We offer background on the project; discuss how collaborative researches engendered community-based engagements and collaborative pedagogies; and conclude by suggesting that those collaborative pedagogies that work between communities and universities both expand and complicate recent calls for democratic civic engagement.[collaborative ethnography, participatory research, collaborative pedagogy, community–university partnerships, democratic civic engagement]