It’s been a diverse week in B.C.’s northern capitol. The Communities in Bloom Committee has hosted the competition judges and in an unfortunate concidence the city has come under fire for the quality of life it offers.
After a respectable showing in the Communities in bloom Competition last year the committee had great treat in store for this year’s judges – a tour of the city to end all tours. Replete with carriage rides and boat tours on the major rivers, the judges were treated to a side of Prince George that visitors here for a brief stay would be unlikely to see.
Virtually simultaneously to the judges tour came charges from former residents and even overseas publishers of a vacation guide that characterize our town as among other things “dirty”, “ugly industrial town”, and “crime-ridden.”
Depending on your perspective a person could indeed see the Spruce Capital as all of these things. But if you did you are likely viewing the city from a poor vantage point and taking only a superficial glance.
To critique the town as dirty, ugly and industrial is to forget its historic and current day role as the supplier of the goods necessary to build not only a province but a nation. And though this is the site of some of the most intensive industrialzation outside the Lower Mainland we are still just minutes away in any direction from the Supernatural scenery, fresh air and water that the rest of the country covets so.
Even less accurate is to brand it crime-ridden. In terms of property crime it is no more crime-ridden than any city as hard hit by economic downturn. If you see it as crime-ridden in terms of drugs, prostitution and the like it certainly has all the same problems as any small city but nothing that would hold a candle to a ‘real’ metropolitan area.
It seems that there will always be those who see just the negative. They are doing themselves a huge disservice, for it is so easy to revel in the great things about this city with so many gifts in what is a vast and virtually unspoiled part of our province.