Our opinion: Nicknaming

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other name would smell as sweet.”

Juliet Capulet was smitten and frustrated by the weight given to familial bonds. She knew nothing of the creation of corporate or community image.

Flash forward to today and the angst of image. There is a great deal in a name, especially when it identifies a place through a subtle inference of value.

Hence, the lovely green hills, valleys and meandering waters that surround this place have been called “The Allegheny Highlands,” “Kinzua Country,” “Pennsylvania Wilds,” even “God’s Country.”

The idea for the nicknames has been to label and at the same time market this place as a destination for tourists, even instill some pride of place for those of us who live here. They have, by and large, been contrived by groups organized for marketing. Some have been more successful and long-lived than others.

Northeast Pennsylvania has had nicknames as well, and like our own area, have been contrived in brain-storming marketing sessions. The newest, however, was concocted by slogan-seeking real estate purveyors to corporate America. They have re-labeled Northeast Pennsylvania as the I-81 corridor, taking full advantage of that major north-south artery to lure companies in search of locations where easy access to the Interstate Highway System is high on their wish lists.

That’s fine for Northeast Pennsylvania, where an emphasis on industrial recruiting appears to be eclipsing the verdant opportunities of the Pocono Mountains.

Slogans and nicknames come and go, but the landscape changes little.

We are very happy to live in the Allegheny Highlands, the Pennsylvania Wilds and Kinzua Country. And, while we will welcome with open arms new corporate neighbors who respect the importance of our environment, our selling point is livability and a great place to visit.