A Kingston by any other name would be as sweet ...
August 22, 2008 · Updated 2:57 PM
A little-known poet once penned: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose/By any other name would smell as sweet.” Or some such thing.
OK, confession time: It was William Shakespeare and the character voicing the observation was Juliet, who was depressed that the man with whom she was hopelessly twitterpated was from a family that rivaled her own.
Man, that stinks.
Despite her young age, she was able to see through the thinly veiled argument that a name makes the man. The point of her teenage angst was that a label is merely that: A label.
Kingston, however, is on the other side of the argument. It is stuck with a monicker, slogan, nickname — whatever it’s called — that feels too outdated. No longer do the leaders of the unincorporated town want to be called the “Little City by the Sea,” as that no longer captures the essence of their slice of the Pacific Northwest.
Here’s the quandry: How, exactly do you sum up a place like Kingston in just a few words?
Kingston is as charming as the summer days are long. Neighbors don’t just say “good morning” and congregate at the mailboxes for a few minutes in the evenings. They actually know each other. Each block of downtown offers a new treasure, be it a used book store or a café in which the goodies are indeed home-baked. It’s impossible to walk through downtown and not see a friendly, smiling face.
Geographically, it’s just, well, cool.
The town has made the most of its waterfront, making it a focal point for get-togethers, both planned and unplanned. A huge, open-space park accentuates the beautiful view of Appletree Cove.
The holidays are celebrated in Kingston like no other place on earth. Be it Christmas or Fourth of July, it’s no matter. Any excuse to come together as a community is a good one for Kingston.
The Kingston Revitalization Association (KRA) and the Kingston Chamber of Commerce are taking the lead on the nickname debate. Karen Ross, president of the KRA, is fielding the votes. What sparked the conversation? “A lot of people just don’t like the old one,” Ross said.
As of now, there are three contenders:
• Kingston on the Cove;
• Kingston — A Sound way of life; or
• Kick back in Kingston.
These were pared down from the less-than-serious “It’s not Jamaica Mon,” and others that didn’t make the cut.
All kidding aside, the task of giving a nickname to a city is a monumental one. How, exactly, do you say: “ Kingston is a charming city where neighbors are friends, community gatherings are the norm and there’s a friendly face around every corner.” Add in: “ It’s an outdoor lover’s paradise, with moderate winters and warm summers (excluding this year) where we live to play and play to live.”
Getting all that into a slogan is a tall order.
Good luck, Kingston.