Solon is going to be 200 years old next year, and local organizers are mapping plans for the city’s year-long celebration.

Bicentennial organizers told the Solon City Council Finance Committee last week that preliminary plans call for blending annual events – like the summer Home Days – with four new bicentennial events in 2020. They include a winter festival in January, a time capsule opening in June, a bicentennial ball in September and a video and book release in December.

The estimated cost to taxpayers? $216,000. Ouch. Seems a bit pricey.

And so does the $27,000 going to Palmer Event Solutions, a firm hired to help plan the events.

We look forward to the November budget hearings when the committee details exactly where every dollar is going.

Sure, parties are fun, though a formal ball funded by taxpayer dollars sounds exclusive and not for the average Solon citizen.

Something seems to be missing here. Where’s the history, the telling of Solon’s story? What about paying tribute to settlers Jason Robbins and Isaac Bull as well as Mayor Edwin Carter and other city visionaries? Will there be events (perhaps theatrical or musical) reflecting Solon’s history? Perhaps a creative historical timeline or recognition of descendants?

Bicentennial planners need to reach out to the local historical society, civic clubs and everyday residents for feedback on what they want to see in this celebration.

Ask taxpayers what they want and let them see where $216,000 is going to be spent. 2020 is just a little more than three months away.

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