Saturday, March 10, 2007

Drag the Mayor to the Fountain

Joe Wessels has a column today about the proposal for a unique ceremony for turning on the Tyler Davidson Fountain. It sounds a bit out there, but I really like the idea. As Joe writes, it is a throw back to other historical traditions, like British Parliament celebrates, where custom dictates that a when a new speaker is elected, they are dragged to the chair at the start of their first session. Very ceremonial, but fun. It makes civic society more human, than just figureheads.

The problem which may prevent this from happening is that City Officials and local leaders are far too stuffy to do something like this, except for Jim Tarbell. That is just such a shame. If people want to change the image of the city, it must include things are are fun, interesting, and don't happen anywhere else. It would be a great way to get media attention, preferable on a national or international level. It is unique, it is rare in Cincinnati, but also across the country. If there was a way to find a similar German tradition, it might go over more with old guard around town.

This kind of thing isn't going to hurt anyone, so why anyone would be opposed to it would be more of reflection on their inability to either have fun or to think beyond the simplistic. It is kind of ironic that to break out of a traditional bland image, we'd be creating an elaborate new tradition that hearkens back to over a hundred years ago. This kind of idea is why Bill Donabedian was hired to run Fountain Square. I say go for it. Maybe tone down the detail of the event, but if this is tied in with an opening day weekend every year, it is a connection to our past and creates a direction for the future to flow forward.

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