EDITORIAL: Open events are good for our community
Spring 2017 Editorial Board
A couple weeks ago, citizens in Auburn went downtown to see the first Mardi Gras parade hosted there since 2012.
It was fun, simple and ran well.
We would love for more events to be hosted in downtown Auburn because they give our community a sense of unity, promote economic activity and provide great entertainment for students and nonstudents alike.
Auburn Cityfest provides a great example of the fun events our city can put on.
It’s a free, annual event that features arts and crafts, food and music.
It’s easy for a student to go through four years here at Auburn without becoming immersed in the culture of the city and its happenings.
For many communities, open events are a great way to sow together individuals, many of whom come from faraway places and feel isolated, into a cohesive unit marked by warmth and familiarity.
Auburn University’s presence certainly already permeates through the city, and vice versa, but further connecting the two through open events is a great opportunity to promote unity in Auburn.
Moreover, it could help foreign students feel a little more at home here in Auburn, which is an increasingly important duty we must commit to as nativism creeps forward in our country.
In doing this, Auburn students would become more acquainted with people they normally wouldn’t associate with — namely, people who aren’t on Auburn’s campus much or at all.
This unity could entail students learning more about the lives of Auburn’s citizens outside of the University, and therefore may lead to students becoming more involved in the community.
Open events also provide a great venue for local musicians, food vendors and various other forms of entertainment, which all promote economic activity.
One event Auburn’s downtown could hold is an Oktoberfest. There is already an Oktoberfest at The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center, but it would be great to expand it to downtown.
Like Oktoberfests around the world, it would attract people from all around the city to fellowship, listen to music and have beer.
Apart from the direct positive economic effects open events like this would have, having more open events would make Auburn into a place where people are more inclined to live.
Parents and prospective parents will take note if there are lots of free or cheap events to take their kids to.
Additionally, the economic ripple extends to business owners as they look for reasons to place their businesses in Auburn.
Having a vibrant and cohesive community certainly makes Auburn a more competitive city in that regard.
In the end, people are drawn toward entertainment.
Depending on its form, it can help us escape from drudgery, unite people or help us think about our lives.
The German philosopher Friedrich Nitezsche once wrote, “Is not life a hundred times too short for us — to bore ourselves?”
Having more open events to occupy our short time here will go a long way in generally bettering the lives of people who live here.
Putting on more open events would help Auburn get through the inevitable trials its people face and provide an outlet of fun for everyone.