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Warren! Look At Bedford For Christmas

12/04/2008

With a population of a little over 14 thousand, Bedford Ohio is gearing up to change itself into Bedford Falls of “Its A Wonderful Life” movie fame.

I find the contrast between what the little town of Bedford is doing with business merchants, and the Holidays, compared to the turmoil being generated in Warren Ohio over the traditional Caroling on the Square , rather interesting.

The creative approach as compared to the “what’s in it for me” approach.

DTD posted two postings about Caroling on the Square which sparked some heated remarks from local business people. Some of those merchants have gone as far as signing a petition in which they state their disfavor about participating in anything that cost them not to make money.

In Bedford, Santa Claus arrives by train, and instead of charging a “buck” for a photo, everyone is encouraged to bring their own camera for a photo. Solves the charging problem.

Horse-drawn wagon rides through town seem to be popular, in fact, so popular that they are adding a second wagon this year and it’s free.

Free entertainment along Broadway is provided; festive activities at many shops with giveaways, face painting, clowns and magicians; an ice sculpture; refreshments provided by local businesses plus sponsors and free “roasted” marshmallows provided by the Boy Scouts along with a Boy Scout truck food drive which benefits “local” families.

The merchants also have a “Frequent Shopper Raffle” which shows their creativity while their providing a Holiday Spirit in the other venues. The “Raffle” works with people shopping the many specialty shops and if they spend $10 (ten dollars) or more, the shopper has a chance to win prizes.

Warren and Bedford, two stark differences of a City and Businesses approaching the Holiday.

“Catering to the locals has DONE NOTHING for us”, a statement made by a Warren Business person, versus the innovative “Spirit” of giving to the “locals.”

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Andy1701 permalink
    12/04/2008 3:13 pm

    You did sell Warren a little bit short. While the disgruntled merchants whined — and others fail to take aggressive action — the event for Friday sounds like it should be just as nice as Bedford’s. Warren also will have face painting, two craft stations, wandering carolers and other choirs, etc.

    There just won’t be any significant participation from the merchants to encourage people to patronize their stores or restaurants.

  2. 12/12/2008 1:13 pm

    Remember that the petition that was circulated had only eight signatures and only four of the signers actually owned a business downtown. Whine, Whine, Whine….

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