July 30, 2012:
So after a well-publicized vote on what to call Edmonton's annual summer fair - currently under the generic Capital EX- the producer of said event Northlands has announced the winner.
K-Days was the abbreviation, the slang-term, for the fair's long-standing name of Klondike Days. The original idea for the Klondike Days theme stemmed was Edmonton's peripheral involvement in the Klondike Gold Rush, as a staging area for one of the toughest ways to get to the Klondike gold rush up north.
It came complete with barbershop quartets, men dressed in turn-of-the-century stifling hot vests and suits, ladies in the full Victorian style regalia of dresses.
All of which the city was completely bored with by the mid-80s, especially when we really didn't have much historical claim to calling ourselves a Klondike gold rush town.
So here's the can of worms that'll be opened with the decision to call Capital EX K-Days.
What does K-Days stand for, the visitor will ask.
Well there really isn't a "name", Northlands will reply. It's more a brand.
Where upon $10,000 will be spent on a marketing survey that will come back that the first thing most non-Edmontonians think of when they hear K-Days, is the venerable ancient Chrysler-Dodge K-Car. In other words, no tourism value whatsoever outside of Edmonton's rubber-tire traffic.
We can't have that, Northlands will say.
And, of course, a lobby will start to bring back the dreaded Klondike Days theme that was universally loathed by any commentator under the age of 60 (back in the '80s!) and was finally, finally put to rest with the birth of generic Capital Ex.
And so, in our city's bedraggled attempt always to find a theme, any theme, when no overarching theme exists, Klondike Days will reach out of the grave and its zombies will stagger once more into the light for another 10 years of unending debate over who and what we are.