Naming a restaurant is a tricky thing. When done well, a good restaurant name both stands out from its competition and helps diners understand what it's all about. When done poorly, they get mocked on the Internet by snarky writers or triggers a lawsuit.
The Evelyn's Park Conservancy definitely wants to land in the former category and firmly avoid the latter for the restaurant its hired chef Jamie Zelko (Zelko Bistro) to open in the Bellaire park. Towards that end, it's announced a contest that will allow members of the public to submit name suggestions via the park's website.
Proposed names should meet the following guidelines: "The name should reflect the core values of Evelyn’s Park, including community, nature and family. When considering your submission, embrace names that evoke comfort, the hearth, and the history of this great property, all representing the goals of Evelyn’s Park." It should also reflect the contest's theme of "We want to be a part of your every day."
The prize isn't bad: Dinner for four with Jamie and Dalia Zelko at the restaurant, as well as a one year membership to Evelyn's Park Conservancy.
While it's possible that the selection committee, which includes Zelko and her business partner, Bellaire mayor Andrew Friedberg, members of the Evelyn’s Park Conservancy Board, and others, will cop out and settle on something fairly obvious like Bistro Menil did at the end of its contest, the contest appears designed to generate ideas that are a little more creative.
"Community, nature, and family are the park’s core values, and name submissions will be judged based on their ability to evoke feelings of comfort, the hearth, and the significant history of the park,” said Patricia King-Ritter, president of Evelyn’s Park Conservancy, in a statement. “It’s so important to the Conservancy and to the Zelkos to embrace the voice of the customer and engage the community, which ultimately is how this contest came about.”
In keeping with the spirit of family and together, may we humbly suggest: The Kumbaya Cafe at Evelyn's Park? You're welcome, Conservancy Board.