There was no mistaking Second Avenue in Warren for Times Square on New Year's Eve, but for a first effort to rekindle interest in downtown on a cold, dank night, it was reasonable.
For those expecting miracles, it was no doubt a disappointment, but for realists who understand the demographics of a community of less than 10,000, it was a pretty good effort.
The first installment of any event envisioned to be annual is always a learning experience for the organizers. These are the things that we did right; do more of those. These are the things we should change or avoid next year.
And then, there is the question of involvement. For weeks leading up to the big night, the Council on Tourism sought vendors for the event, offering large and small businesses the opportunity to turn a bit of profit and give the community something else to do while they were downtown. The response was less than spectacular, and we applaud those who set up shop.
Community events such as this don't succeed unless the community is on board. Of course, unless it is Midtown Manhattan, it's more difficult to get people out and in a cheery mood in the middle of a cold December night than it is on a sunny Fourth of July.
We commend the Council on Tourism for its efforts and wish it well if it decides to do it again 12 months from now.
There will always be grousers, naysayers who fall victim to their own pessimism and dismiss any effort that isn't 100 percent successful. We are fortunate to have among us people who continue to plug away at bringing us together in a sense of community and good fun.