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Planting a new holiday tradition in Spiceland

By DARREL RADFORD - dradford@thecouriertimes.com

SPICELAND — No one really out-grows Christmas – unless of course you’re a tree.

Recently, Spiceland Town Council members approved the start of a new holiday tradition – planting another tree to light for Christmas on town property next to the barbershop.

For many years, a tree near the town office had been decorated with holiday lights and was the focal point for Christmas activities. But alas, that tree is now so tall, officials here have determined it’s too dangerous for anyone – even with a bucket truck – to hang lights on it. 

Town Council President Darren Jacobs said the gesture – made by the same folks who coordinate Spiceland Freedom Days activities – was a good solution to the problem.

“They would like to plant and decorate a tree and we would provide them with electricity,” Jacobs said. “It’s probably not going to be a huge tree right off the bat. I think the plan is to do it this year. Our Utility Supt., Jeff Lane, will assist them on where the best spot is and help with electricity connection.

“It’s very nice for these folks to do this,” Jacobs said. “It will be very visible to the public, because this is where everybody comes and gets their mail.”

A suggestion had been made to get the lights up on the taller tree and leave them up year-round, but Jacobs and others didn’t think that was a good idea. It wouldn’t look good in the months following Christmas and the weather wear on the lights would necessitate frequent changes. 

“This tree has just gotten to the point where it’s just too large for us to decorate,” Jacobs said. “It’s been at least six or seven years since it was lit up. Jeff remembers standing on his tiptoes in the bucket truck to do it. It just got too tall.

“It’s good sometimes to start new traditions,” Jacobs added. “We should cherish the old traditions, but also look for opportunities to start new traditions.”

In other business:

• Council members voted to turn the case of a South 2nd Street property littered with vehicles that apparently don’t run to Attorney Tracy Newhouse who will seek a court order to remove them. There are four vehicles on the property, owned by Mark Smith. Other debris also contributes to its unsightly appearance.

• Town Council members voted to change their regular meeting date for 2020. Regular meetings, now held on the first Wednesday of every month at 6 p.m., will move to the first Tuesday of the month starting Jan. 7.