"Hartford: New England's Rising Star" was a slogan intended to sell the city to itself and to others - a brand that placed the lesser-known city in the better-known region, one that hinted at change.How about spending less money on "marketing" the city and fix the problems in Hartford. Maybe if you take care of the issues plaguing the "Insurance Capitol" people would do business in the city again. Marketing games and grandstanding such as Perez's well published "walk" to Jodi Rell office after a teen was killed do nothing for the prople who are in the most need.
But five years into the slogan's life, some city boosters are sensing it's time for a different message. Hartford, some say, has already risen. Others, perhaps less convinced, wonder how long a star can rise before it, and the slogan, get tuckered out.
"There are clearly lots of opinions as to whether the star has risen, and whether that logo stays the same," said R. Nelson "Oz" Griebel, head of the MetroHartford Alliance - one of several partners in the slogan's parent, the Hartford Image Project.
The initial marketing effort, he said, was an attempt to define the city before its major attractions started attracting. And while Griebel is partial to keeping the logo, he said a broader question is being asked:
"Now, with a lot of the construction completed, what is the best way to market the city?"
How about dropping the marketing plan and fix the education system. Perez should take a walk down to Hartford Public High School and get a clue.
How about dropping the marketing plan and offer a real alternative to hanging out onthe street to the kids who live in the North-End who have no place to go because funding for after-school activities have dried up.
A new marketing plan? Where's the leadership?