The Dallas Morning News included a special four-page holiday section in the paper today. The section set out a number of places all across the state to see colorful light shows, find special shopping and attend festivals. I thought the section in the main well done. The section did not restrict itself to one faith, but included things connected to more than one faith. Some of the things it highlighted sounded fun--and a few were unknown to me. I did have a quibble with it, though--it lacked the local feel that I consider so important to such an endeavor. Almost all of the events were a few hours' drive away.
Our metroplex is surrounded by suburbs, distant suburbs and small towns. Many small towns feature charming local festivals, which thrive when city visitors come to share the fun. The city is filled with a wide variety of groups holding celebrations and events, including, I imagine, fledgling events which would love more visitors.
I am not sure of many things, but I am sure of this--it's a good time for people to seek out the local. I share the general public amusement that the "refinery shortage" crisis which supposedly drove prices over four dollars a gallon magically abated when the economy went into near-collapse. Our local gasoline prices have fallen as far as a dollar eighty two cents a gallon. I am not lulled by this into thinking that this is a great time for long holiday drives. Also, I think that the economy makes it harder for people to travel.
I think it's a good economic time to promote the local in nearby regional things.
I also believe that people hunt the exotic far away--and miss the interesting things nearby. The attitude that "if it were any good, it would not be here" afflicts people. I think that people can do good and fun things, if they believe they can. Part of that belief starts with "It can happen here".
Perhaps the solution is to research local events, and set up an internet presence.