I would like to ask if it is acceptable to call an event "English in the town" putting the emphasis on the contrast that is is not held in the classroom. It is the name of the event, i.e. it should attract and draw attention to it. Thank you.

  • Hmm.. I would try "English on the streets". (0: – CowperKettle Jun 10 '17 at 5:16
  • The thing is, the event is held in a coffee bar, so it is not really on the streets :) I just wanted to emphasize that it is not held in the class, but in town. I got a complaint that one can never say in the town because in town is an idiomatic expression. But I called it "in the town" on purpose. Now I am in doubt. – Barb Jun 10 '17 at 5:22
  • "English in Town" is a clever and intriguing name for the event. Go ahead and use that. Trust me. – P. E. Dant Jun 10 '17 at 6:42
  • Thank you. I was just wondering if I I could use the definite article with town. I understand its idiomatic usage, as in "in town, on the town," but if I wanted to lay stress on it. I guess I was wrong – Barb Jun 10 '17 at 9:42

Both are possible, but "in town" is significantly more idiomatic.

"In town" not only means "in the town, as opposed to outside in a rural area", but also strongly connotes "visiting, on hand, close by". It's understood to mean "in our town".

Hey, kids! There's a Santa Claus parade in town. Do you want to go?

"In the town", on the other hand, requires the mention of a specific town.

There is much to see in the town of Rochester, New York.

In the countryside there's little to see, but in the town there are several museums.

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