I actually like the smaller events more... They seem a bit more personal than some of the larger events.
In some cases, skating events are afterthought add-ons to preexisting events. This is especially the case in several of the local events I've skated in the last couple years. I think as skaters, we need to approach the organizers, either at the events, or by email, phone, regular mail, or whatever means may be available & give them our feedback. Including info about the surface, route, timing (does it conflict with other skating events), etc... & even possible sponsors that they may be able to use for future events. Of course, some of the organizers just flat out don't listen to the feedback & I think many skaters in Central Florida can think of one such local organizer without much trouble
I like some of sk8godfather's ideas, i.e. alternative/green transport. If there was a safe way to skate the 6 miles from house to work, I'd be skating to work at least a couple times a week. I've seen people locally skating for transportation, especially when shopping, although many of the shops are starting to put up signs that say no skating. Also locally, a small number of schools are acting as test beds for Rollerblade's "Skate-in-School" program.