Some thoughts while we wait to be branded

Carson City. One of only 50 state capitals in the country. A city of rich history, clean air, beautiful vistas, majestic buildings and an arts community many larger cities would be proud to have. Just close enough to Reno and Tahoe to enjoy their wonders - natural or manmade - without having to endure their hassles - a higher cost of living and congestion. A city with a stable government-based workforce at its core and easy access to recreation of all sorts.

Yet somehow we can't quite figure out who we are. Somehow we're invisible in a regional marketing effort that includes us in "greater Reno-Tahoe." Somehow we have to spend tens of thousands of dollars to have a consultant figure out our identity ... er, brand.

Is it possible we're thinking too hard?

We don't question the value of a cohesive marketing effort like the one suggested by that consultant ... "you have to be known for something," he said. He believes we should be known for our restaurants, golf courses and V&T Railway. Sounds good, but we wonder if that's too limiting. We love our restaurants and golf courses, but are they unique and plentiful enough to bring the hordes until the bypass that will drain the traffic out of downtown is done (possibly more than a decade from now)? We may be waiting that long for the V&T as well, and even when it's done there's no guarantee it will bring tourists into the city.

Which brings us back to all of the other reasons we live in Carson City, and reasons people come to town. If you want an example of a great one, just drive out to the Edmonds Sports Complex today and you'll see hundreds of children and their parents who've come to town to participate in a soccer tournament, on the heels of a tournament last weekend that brought hundreds of softball players (begging the question of why recreational sports tournaments aren't given a higher priority in picking our brand, and what other opportunities we may be overlooking).

It may be years until we get our walkable downtown or our V&T, but we'll be looking for leaders this election savvy enough to know Carson City needn't be in limbo ... people ready to fix the city's blemishes and take better advantage of the long list of assets we already enjoy.

Maybe they don't add up to a brand, but they do make a great place to visit and to live.

• This editorial represents the view of the Nevada Appeal Editorial Board.


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