A Welcome to Washington Day for newcomers held this past Saturday at the Presbyterian Church attracted a small, but interested crowd, said Paula Obermark, one of the organizers.
The event featured displays, brochures and information from a variety of groups and organizations.
“We only had 20 people come for it, but those 20 really enjoyed it and stayed between 20 and 45 minutes,” Obermark said.
“Many of them thanked us for holding it and said it was well done, informative and helpful,” she said. “I really believe it was. Even those of us manning the booths learned a lot about services we were unaware of.”
Participants could learn about voter registration, the library, YMCA memberships, parks department programs, city services, senior center activities, United Way services for families, local attractions, events and areas of interest.
Obermark said the majority of those who attended were brand new to the area, and seemed to enjoy visiting with one another, as well as with those at the booths.
“I think that was the best part, the visiting, because it was a very warm and welcoming setting,” she said.
Although a little disappointed with the low turnout, Obermark said organizers did learn a few things as well.
“If we ever do it again, we would make it shorter, holding it from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. was a little long, and it might work well to do it in conjunction with another event, like the Home Show or something like that,” she said. “We really didn’t know what to expect, but it was a really great event for those who turned out.
Organizations represented included the city of Washington and Parks Department; Downtown Washington Inc.; Franklin County Area United Way; Franklin County Clerk’s office; Four Rivers Area YMCA; Washington Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Department; Washington Historical Society; Washington Public Library; and Washington Senior Center.