Clark Kent spent his formative years in a little Kansas town known as Smallville, where he learned the values he would carry with him as Superman. But in the real world, there is no such town as Smallville, Kansas, a fact that one comic book artist and Superman fan is out to change.
Artist Christopher Wietrick has launched a campaign to see his town, Hutchinson, Kansas, renamed "Smallville," and recognized as the official hometown of Superman. His Facebook campaign "Hutchinson Should Be Named 'Smallville'" lists off the various ways that Hutchinson resembles the fictional small town, including geography, population, and local culture. Certainly much of Wietrick's desire to see the town renamed comes from his personal passion for the Man of Steel, but he has a practical reason for seeking the name change as well: tourism. He hopes that, much like Metropolis, Illinois, Smallville, Kansas, could be a destination for fellow Superman fans, especially if the town features its own DC-inspired public artworks.
It's not clear how much of Hutchinson backs Wietrick's dream of Smallville and Superman tourist dollars, but Hutchinson's campaign attracted the notice of the local CBS affiliate, which did a brief story on Wietrick. Wietrick also plans to release a comic outlining his reasons for why Hutchinson would make the perfect Smallville later this month.
If your town would consider changing its name to fit with a fictional origin story, would you be in favor of it?
Update: Ben Eisiminger, one of the fellows involved in this campaign, was kind enough to hop in the comments. Eisiminger, Wietrick, and their co-founder KC McNeely are all part of the campaign to see their town renamed. They do intend to petition the city of Hutchinson for a name change, but they also want DC and Warner Bros. to recognize Hutchinson as the official Smallville.