By HOLLY ABRAMS
I just moved to Sandusky last month I find myself quite intrigued by this little city.
But I find this so odd seeing as nearly everyone I have encountered here doesn't speak too highly of the area. I hear Sandusky called a variety of names, but most frequently a "tourist town," as if the word is a curse.
What is wrong with being a tourist town?
Every area makes its name known somehow and I think it much more fitting to be known for a world-renowned amusement park than for other possible recognition. It could be much worse. Sandusky could be known for producing toilet bowl cleaner or for housing a rare breed of earthworms. But I'll stick with "tourist town," thank you very much.
I hail from Toledo and then moved to Bowling Green, to complete my college education. So to me, compared to my last place of residence, Sandusky is a big upgrade. Bowling Green was far too small-town for my tastes. And without the college student population there, it would be even smaller. Believe it or not, actually having a real mall and more than two main roads is an upgrade.
I have heard some of the supposed "downfalls" about Sandusky -- downtown is run-down, traffic in the summer is horrible and there's too much crime for a city this size ... and the list goes on. But believe me, doing police reporting, I'm fully aware of all the misbehavior going on in this city. And despite any illegal activity, I find Sandusky to be appealing.
Living by Lake Erie has to be my favorite part of Sandusky, and the hustle and bustle of summer festivities here so far has been to my liking too. Lake Erie, in itself, seems to be underappreciated by people here.
I can see how locations long-time residents pass by every day become ordinary, but for me this is extraordinary. As someone that enjoys nature and the outdoors, working and living within walking distance from the bay has been a perk for me.
In addition, Sandusky and its outskirts offer numerous golf courses, beaches and state parks. And let's remember there are a handful of unique communities along Lake Erie, such as Marblehead, Port Clinton, Lakeside and the islands to name a few, each offering potential for a weekend or day-long getaway,
Aside from these extras, Sandusky offers many of the amenities other locales offer: movie theatres, shopping and chain eateries found in cities twice the size of Sandusky. And, if still, after all this recreation, for those simply dying for some "big city" atmosphere, Toledo and Cleveland are each an easy hour-long drive down the turnpike from here.
Guess what else? Besides all the benefits Sandusky has to offer, I have proof not everyone wants to get out of this city either. One of my closest friends from college was born and raised here and now hopes to start her career, guess where? Sandusky. Hmm, there must be something that keeps some people here.
Taking all of this in stride, I do understand, from what multiple sources tell me, that Sandusky is much more appealing in the summer than the winter. But maybe Sandusky is just the right fit for me. As I contemplate this, take a challenge and look at Sandusky in a different light and to think of all the benefits of living here. While driving to work or school and passing by that ordinary sight, try and look at it from an outsider's view and maybe it will be extraordinary for once.
Call me young and optimistic.
Or maybe, call me in January, when its 30 degrees and there's a negative wind chill off the lake. Then ask me what I think of Sandusky. Either way I'm enjoying this city for what it is here and now.