Saturday, January 28, 2012

Everett Town?

All around the city of Lansing we have several unique areas, like "REO Town," "Old Town" and "Downtown."

But what do we call the Old Everett Area?

For those who don't know, the Old Everett Area wasn't annexed into the city until 1948. Before that time, we were part of Lansing Township. Many of our longtime residents still look back when everyone went to school at the old Everett School, too. (The old police station at South Cedar Street and Holmes Road.)

It's like we're a small town inside of a major city.

Our boundaries follow Greenlawn Avenue to the north, the railroad tracks to the east, Jolly Road to the south, South Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue to the west, zigging down Holmes Road and zagging up South Washington Avenue back to Greenlawn Avenue.

Upon looking in this area, we have several districts, including Holmes Orchard, Cedarbrook, Maplehill, Everett, Cavanaugh Park, Kendon Park and Church Point. And when everything is put together, we have the recipe for a small city, with South Cedar Street acting as our downtown.

Other parts of our city use branding to promote who they are. Everyone loves the artistic culture of Old Town. And REO Town is an up and coming part of town, seeing new developments and is the future home to the Board of Water and Light's natural gas-fueled power facility. There's even a HUGE "REO Town" sign where the now-defunct Deluxe Inn once stood.

Would "Everett Town" work? What about "Old Everett"? Maybe just "Everett"?

By branding our area, we can help create a sense of community that may not be blantly obvious to those who live outside of our neighborhood. Our neighborhood has a population that can trace its roots to before it was a part of the city of Lansing. And over the years, families have stayed and generations have continued on. We have long-time roots and a small-town feel that's worth boasting to those who are thinking about moving here.

Here's the question: How do we brand our neighborhood?