Inaugural vs 1st Annual/First Annual

So… you are holding an event for the first time in your community. There is so much to do, details to work out, and let’s not forgot the most important…a title. It must be catchy, you want everyone to come out and participate. Since it is the first year, what do you call it- Inaugural or First Annual. Well, if you want to sound at all educated, Inaugural [Event Name Here] is the proper. Why?  Let me tell you.

First, formal AP style writing states that the first of any event, ceremony, activity , or the like be titled “Inaugural”

Second, Webster’s Dictionary among other respected references, state the definition as:1st annual vs Inaugural

INAUGURAL: [in-aw-gyer-uh l, -ger-uh l]
1. An inaugural ceremony:
We plan to attend the presidential inaugural.

2. An address, as of a president, at the beginning of a term of office.

3. Marking the beginning of a new event, series, venture, activity.
October 24th will be the inaugural Cheboygan Kiwanis Harvest and Haunts event.

Third, although you my plan on holding the same event year, it may not take place. You are setting up your participants for something that could never be. Essentially, you have lied. Maybe not intentionally, yet, still a lie. When and if you decide to hold the event the following year, what will you call it. You skipped a year, remember?

As a rule, newspaper reject the use of first annual, mostly because it is predictive. It would be recommended that you use Inaugural or ‘first of a planned series of annual’, however, until the event is ACTUALLY held twice, it hasn’t become annual. First annual is considered highly pretentious.

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