I really need to check my priorities, because this of all issues is what got me to sit down and write a blog post.
It is not an earth shattering issue. Nor an important one. But it’s something that is related to the theme of this blog. So here I write.
Backstory. Last November, I learned that The President’s Cup, the biennial golf tournament that pits the top American golfers against the top non-European golfers of the world, will be played at Muirfield Village Golf Club in 2013. Boy was I excited. Dublin is yet again playing host to a prestigious golf event.
Beaming with civic pride and bravado, I shared the news with my Facebook and Twitter friends simply stating “Suck it Columbus”. [Back backstory: you all know I am a Michigan alum and any time I get an opportunity to tell Columbus to suck it, I will do it.]
Little did I know, Columbus would laugh and tell me to suck it.
As I watched coverage of the 2011 President’s Cup from Melbourne Australia, a commercial came on to advertise the 2013 President’s Cup at Muirfield Village Golf Club located in …
What. The. Bleeeeeeeeeeeep.
Incensed, I rewound to make sure I wasn’t hearing things. Nope. I wasn’t. So I rewound again, taped the commercial and put it up on YouTube. I was prepared to go on a social media diatribe, but something must have distracted me.
Fast forward to yesterday. Given that it was the first round of the Masters (from Augusta, GA, not Augusta-Atlanta, GA), I was inspired to look up the President’s Cup on the web and saw that the official PGA site said that the event will be in Dublin-Columbus, Ohio.
That prompted me to draw a quick venn diagram to in fact depict that MVGC is definitively and definitely not within the confines of Columbus, Ohio.
One thing lead to a conversation with the Experience Columbus twitter account which tried to argue that many organization put in a lot of effort into brining the event here, yada yada yada, and that both Dublin and Columbus will benefit, yada yada yada, and shouldn’t Columbus also share in the exposure. Or something similar like that.
My answer is simply, NO. MFNO. No. No. And No.
I appreciate all of the effort Columbus and the various corporate and non-profit entities put into brining the President’s Cup to Dublin, Ohio. In fact, I am very proud of that and applaud them. They will get their exposure and glory. They will get their fluff tourism spots showing how great Columbus is to the world. They will get the benefit that they so well deserved.
But Dublin-Columbus, Ohio crosses the line.
When they decided, and I was told it was a consensus decision, to, for lack of a better word, market it as Dublin-Columbus, Ohio, they didn’t take into account how the proud citizens of Dublin, Ohio would react. Well, at least this proud citizen, because I can only speak for me. The fact that such a prestigious event is coming to our town with millions of people watching our city is a great source of civic pride. Adding Columbus to the city name dilutes that pride. It takes away our sense of place identity.
In essence, it’s saying, suck it people of Dublin, we are Columbus, we are bigger than you, and you’re putting our damn name next to yours. And you’re gonna like it.
Well guess what? I don’t like it. And I’m telling the world. SUCK IT COLUMBUS. TAKE YOUR DAMN NAME AND TAKE IT OUT OF OURS.
I’m not saying that Columbus is not a worthy city. It is a great city, with lots of great events. Dublin would not exist but for Columbus. I can’t say the opposite is true. I’m proud to call Dublin home. I’m proud to live in the, ahem, Columbus Region (and that’s another topic, why the rebranding away from Central Ohio to Columbus Region?).
Let’s just call things as they are and let the localities keep their identities. Don’t let the corporate interests dictate how we view our sense of place.
The Memorial Tournament is in Dublin, Ohio, not Dublin-Columbus, Ohio. The Little Brown Jug is in Delaware, Ohio, not Delaware-Columbus, Ohio. Whatever’s in Hilliard is in Hilliard, Ohio, not Hilliard-Columbus, Ohio.
The Columbusization of the Columbus Region will genericize and homogenize Central Ohio. Unless we don’t let it.
P.S., the folks at Experience Columbus have graciously offered to have someone call me that was involved in the planning of the President’s Cup. I accepted their offer and asked if someone from the Chamber and the Columbus Partnership could be on the call as well. They made no promises, but they will ask. I hope after this blog post that the offer still stands. I truly want an open dialog on this thing.