First, my following comments and observations are made in the context of Prince George and all the money and great marketing we all do for our own reasons to promote Prince George to live, work, play, be educated and or a combination there of. Prince George City, businesses, organizations, college, university all have a common issue and that is to recruit people for staffing, students and population growth. This may be a small item in many minds but a lot of small things can add up to bigger things. “Perception is Reality”.
So, what is that one word the I believe may be undermining our promotion of Prince George to this point? That word (or its variation) is “Northern” or “North”. I'm not sure when this word started to creep in and entered almost all of our efforts in the marketing or description of Prince George but it's really not the truth. Not that its bad, but its just not true. Located at N53 54’ on the globe we are basically on the same parallel as Edmonton, Saskatoon, Kingscourt Ireland and Manchester England. When you look up the promotion or description of these cities no where do they describe themselves as Northern or in the North.
For the past year during the course of my career I have asked when talking to people in other major centers like Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa and from out of country if they had a choice to live in the South, Central or North of somewhere what would they choose, given no more explanation than just that. The choice is almost always South and Central and rarely North.
My point is that Prince George is slightly south of the center of British Columbia and I believe if we (including me) promote and integrate the fact we are central into our vocabulary when describing this great city of Prince George we will be further ahead. Prince George is at the center where the two great rivers, the Nechako and Fraser meet, the center for transportation, the center for great education, the center for outstanding health care, the center of incredible business and work opportunities, the center of entertainment and shopping, the center for BC's tourism. Its just a great central place to live, play, work and raise your family.
Names or naming of things also have a subtle way to describe or suggest an expectation and as such I would suggest we are not BC’s Northern Capital, we are Central BC's Capital. Even Wikipedia has this wrong.
For what its worth…
** Here is audio link to a CBC discussion on this:
Video for Prince George BC - Prince George - It's about Time
This is a video blog I post a few days after that above blog was posted just to clarify a few things.