New Year's Eve is supposed to be a night of revelry, reflection and anticipation. Yet for the last two years, Sacramento has tied itself in knots in its role as regional party planner.
In 2008, the city helped nearby businesses launch a ball drop at 10th and K streets, but organizers weren't prepared for the crowd that showed up. At least 12,000 people were ready to rock, overwhelming the available security and portable toilets and creating some ugly moments.
This year, there was talk of a "bigger, better, safer event," but then the economy intervened. With their finances spotty, business supporters dropped the ball on the ball drop – at least until 2010.
That brings us to tonight. It will be a fun one for many. The fireworks in Old Sac are a wonderful attraction, especially for families.
But missing will be a New Year's event that shows off this town's ever-evolving cultural attractions. That's a topic that David Barton explores in today's Viewpoints section.
City leaders and the downtown business community deserve credit for wanting to bring a Times Square spirit to Sacramento. Yet by focusing exclusively on a single ball drop (and on K Street no less), these party planners may be missing a larger opportunity.
Over the past decade, Sacramento's biggest scene has been its Second Saturday art walk. The mixture of music, art, performance and people watching has brought thousands to midtown on some weekends.
To read the complete editorial, visit The Sacramento Bee.