English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I’m making the title of a web page with classifieds, and I’d like to name it either “What’s in (town name)” or “What’s on (town name)”.

Which one sounds better for a town classified web page?

Right now I'm thinking “What’s on (town name)” sounds more like for events or concert, so I’m thinking of going with “What’s in (town name)”.

share|improve this question
This really depends what the web page would be advertising. Events? Items for sale? Job vacancies? Could the title maybe just be the town name, without any extra words in front? – user16269 Sep 23 '12 at 7:42
up vote 3 down vote accepted

What ‘sounds better’ is a matter of opinion. However, if you ask, for example, What’s in Denver? you’re asking what buildings, institutions, organsiations, entertainments and so on are in Denver. If you ask What’s on Denver? I don’t think many would understand the question. Are you perhaps trying to say What’s on in Denver? That would certainly cover concerts and similar events.

share|improve this answer
Thanks I clearly understood. – Shiodome Sep 24 '12 at 3:01
an alternative: "What's On: Denver" ([Feature Title]: [Subtitle]) – horatio Sep 26 '12 at 17:19

Occasionally, "on" makes sense when talking about features of a geographical area; "My family lives on Long Island" is an example: Long Island is usually preceded by "on" in those sentences (and you can usually tell when someone is not from Long Island when they say "in Long Island"). The reason for this is based on the type of object that the name asserts the area is: an island or a coast is something you're "on", while a village or city is something you're "in". So, most towns in the U.S. are not cases of such phenomenon, therefore "What's in TOWNNAME" would sound correct to people rather than "What's on TOWNNAME".

Though I did just realize/realise this is not a U.S.-exclusive site, my bad. Could be totally different overseas.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.