Letter to the Editor: Why doesn’t Strasburg have more events?
Last weekend I was reading a pull-out section of the Northern Virginia Daily that listed area events/activities scheduled during September, October and November. What most struck me was the number and variety of events in the surrounding towns. Specifically: Winchester — 36 events; Woodstock — 22; New market — 12; Front Royal — 8; Middletown — 8; Edinburg — 6; Mount Jackson — 5; Maurertown — 3; Stephens City — 2; and, Toms Brook — 1. Strasburg had only a single event during this three-month period and only three others, at least of which I am aware, for the year; that is less than most of the listed towns have in just three months.
I presume these events/activities bring in visitors and residents who spend money with the vendors and the local merchants, generate taxes for the local jurisdictions, provide visitors an opportunity to develop favorable impressions of the town and foster a local pride and community involvement on the part of residents. While these towns have been and will be reaping economic, social and community benefits, the Town of Strasburg seems to be uninterested.
I acknowledge that the downtown revitalization projects are certainly a very positive endeavor. However, brick sidewalks, new street lamps and building facades do not attract visitors and residents more than once. Events/activities repeatedly bring people who initiate and maintain the economic development cycle.
Is it any wonder that Strasburg is not only falling behind in the competition for tourist dollars and downtown economic and business development but also is losing the dollars and the participation of existing residents to other towns as well as failing to develop the involvement of its newer residents?
Is it not time to critically assess some things? What competitive advantages and opportunities for increased community and new business involvement are being missed or not even considered?
Robert Flanagan, Strasburg