Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Michael Rielly

Unwrapping hope for Christmas in April

Recommended Posts

Michael Rielly

Unwrapping hope for Christmas in April

WPRI
Walt Buteau
May 1, 2020

EXCERPT:

CHRISTMAS-IN-APRIL-PKG.00_01_52_21.Still

 

EAST GREENWICH, R.I. (WPRI) — The Correira’s evergreen was big when they started their Christmas tradition about 20 years ago, but now it’s twice the size, symbolizing 65 feet of hope.

It is Christmas in April on Frenchtown Road, where some 4,000 lights are casting a glow on the neighborhood.

Nine-year old Jenna Cullen lives up the street.

“It looks really nice and it looks bright and it kind of like lights up the street,” she said through a face mask that reminds everyone it’s not Christmas.

Thanks to Jenna’s father, who made several wooden hearts that are decorated with messages on a nearby fence, there’s also some appreciation mixed in with the twinkling lights.

And it all starts with a brief conversation in the Correira’s living room.

“We were sitting on the couch one day,” Andy recalled. “And we were thinking of something to do.”

“I said, ‘Why don’t we light the tree?'” his wife Bonnie said.

“She said we should light it in recognition of all the first responders,” Andy added.

When they moved into their home about 20 years ago, the tree was a big one – maybe about 30 feet tall.

About three years later, they strung a bunch of lights and started a cookie swap with their neighbors that, over the years, has grown along with the spruce, from about 50 to more than 100 participants.

The tree sprouted so tall that they now need a 75-foot bucket truck to adjust the lights and add new strings around Christmas for when Santa even stops by.

The goal of flipping the switch now is to help us think of happier times, while also saying “thank you” to COVID-19 focused first responders, like Jimmy Gallagher’s mom, who works at Kent Hospital.

“I think more people should be doing more things showing that we care about the people who help,” Gallagher said after bringing a heart to attach to the fence.

While December is seven months away, Andy points out there are similarities to the holiday season, including gratitude and the spirit of giving.

“It doesn’t feel like Christmas,” Andy said. “But it’s a different feeling. A feeling of hope.”

They are hearing about the impact on social media and from strangers who drive by the tree and the hearts.

“Everybody going by, blowing the horn,” Andy said as someone honked again. “Just like that. Strangers going by.”

Sometimes, before the sun rises.

“We heard three honks and said ‘What was that?’ at 4:30 in the morning,” Bonnie said. “I think that’s big. That we can make them smile. That we can give them the hope that we will get through this.”

There’s room for more hearts, with the Correiras hoping to fill another 50 feet of fence.

“We’ll keep going,” Bonnie said. “Until this is over.”

SOURCE: https://www.wpri.com/news/street-stories/unwrapping-hope-for-christmas-in-april/

 

SOURCE:

 

  • Like 4
  • Love 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hubcity Santa

Thanks for sharing this wonderful story!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Santa Bill Reiller

Great story!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Donations

    All donations go directly towards the cost of hosting and running ClausNet!

    Your support, through donations or simply by clicking on sponsor links, is greatly appreciated!

    Donate Sidebar by DevFuse
  • Our picks

    • Every Once in A While
      Every once in a while I see some flagrant abuses of Santa’s appearance and etiquette. It strikes me some men don’t care about how they act or portray the beloved character of Santa.

      Gentlemen, you undertake an awesome responsibility when you button up your Santa Suit. Don’t take it lighty!

      The “World” has an image of Santa as represented by illustrations, traditions and personal contact. Believe it or not, you’re being measured by those who see you for your authenticity.

      You’re fooling yourself if you believe that no one notices or cares if your bead is yellow or unkempt. Maybe you’re also missing a few of those pearly whites, or they are stained from tobacco products. Again, don’t fool yourself….kids notice everything! I have a gold crown capping one of my lower teeth. Every once in a while, I have an inquisitive youngster question what that gold thing is in my mouth. Years ago I thought it was well hidden however; kids have uncanny radar to pick out any of our flaws….

      You may be asking yourself, “What difference does it make? “It’s not the Christmas Season.” Maybe it isn’t however, If you’re representing Santa, you’re representing one of the most recognizable characters in the world. What you do reflects upon me and every Santa reader of this article. If you’re going to be recognized then do justice to the character we are reenacting.

      Over the years I have been a Santa, I have frequently been by told by people about the Santa they hired or saw which left a very poor expression. Most of their comments were predictable. Their Santa did not interact with the children as expected or he was unprepared. He was unanimated, had a dirty suit or lack luster beard. Obviously these are sure fire ways never to be called to this group again.

      Think about what impression you make as a Santa and pay attention to developing your character. You can become one of the best Santas in your area by learning everything about your character and performing from the heart.

      Always remember: It's not about you. It's about the children.

      Santa Lou Knezevich is the creator of the Legendary Santas Mentoring Program
      Contact Santa Lou at: LegendarySantasMentoringProg@gmail.com
        • Love
        • Like
      • 1 reply
    • If You Have the Post Christmas Blues You’re Doing Christmas Wrong
      The post-Christmas blues are a very real thing. Once the date of December 25th has passed the specter of December 26th is an ominous marker to many. It sits there on the calendar like the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come. Silent and foreboding, the very image of the hooded Angel of Death it seems to be. And why not?

      Just about anywhere you look Americans are tossing trees to the curb, ripping down lights from rooftops and radio stations are flipping back to everyday music. What took months to build gets deconstructed in a matter of a couple of days.
        • Like
      • 26 replies
    • Auld Lang Syne
      Every New Year’s Eve at the stroke of midnight, millions around the world traditionally gather together to sing the same song, “Auld Lang Syne”. As revilers mumble though the song’s versus, it often brings many of them to tears – regardless of the fact that most don’t know or even understand the lyrics. Confusion over the song’s lyrics is almost as much of a tradition as the song itself. Of course that rarely stops anyone from joining in.
        • Wow
        • Like
      • 3 replies
    • Merry Christmas, My Friend
      Every year around this time, some variation of this poem is circulated online. The poem is generally credited to “a soldier stationed in Okinawa” or more recently since September 11, 2001, “a Marine stationed in Afghanistan”.

      However, the poem’s true author is Lance Corporal James M. Schmidt.

      Originally entitled, “Merry Christmas, My Friend”, Corporal Schmidt wrote the poem in 1986 while serving as Battalion Counter Sniper at the Marine Barracks 8th & I, in Washington, D.C.

      That day the poem was placed in the Marine Corps Gazette and distributed worldwide. Schmidt’s poem was later published in Leatherneck (Magazine of the Marines) in December 1991.
        • Sad
        • Love
        • Like
      • 1 reply
    • Is it time to start calling out Bad Santas?
      Is it time to start calling out Bad Santas?

      Do you think we should start calling out those in our community whose actions or behavior is unbecoming of Santa Claus or Mrs. Claus?
        • Wow
        • Like
      • 94 replies
About | Forums | Blogs | Newsletter | Contact


© 2019 MJR Group. LLC. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Copyright IP Policy

Proud affiliate of My Merry Christmas!

Subscribe to the ClausNet Gazette

Enter your email address to subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

About ClausNet

The ClausNet community is the largest social network and online resource for Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, Elves, Reindeer Handlers, and Santa helpers for the purposes of sharing stories, advice, news, and information.
×
×
  • Create New...