The village tree

Mark and I have never been in Door County so late in the fall, so we’ve been kind of interested to see what things are like in the off-season. Last Saturday (Nov 11th), the Ellison Bay Service Club (EBSC) asked for volunteers to help set up the tree and decorate it, and Mark and I participated.

That’s Jeff Triptow of Triptow Tree Service in the cherry picker at the top of the tree. He was the only set-up person who didn’t live on Ranch Lane!
The tree went into a hole made specifically for this in the parking lot next to the Welcome Center where I work. Pictured from left to right are Vance, the nephew of our neighbor at the end of the street, Mark, Bryan who lives further up from us on the street, and under the tree is Steve who is selling his big house at the beginning of our street and building a much smaller house right next door to us.
The EBSC with the help of some local businesses and Door County North (in charge of the Welcome Center) bought brand new ornaments for the tree this year, including this huge star for the top of the tree. To the left is Bryan again, and holding the star is Mike, Vance’s uncle who lives at the end of our street.

Our street is so close to the Welcome Center that I often walk to work in the summer. I think that’s why it was only folks from our street who got up early enough to help set up the tree. After the tree was set up, the decorations and the volunteers who came to put them up started arriving.

People brought goodies and music as well…
…and coffee and hot chocolate with all the fixings to help warm us up.
There were several teenage boys who did the kinds of things we older folks couldn’t do.
Jeff Triptow helped with the bulbs and lights that were too high for anyone else to reach.
I took this picture from across the street. It had started raining, so they moved the goodie table under the kiosk roof.
When the tree was decorated, they decided they needed one more rope to secure the tree in case of wind, so this young man volunteered to tie the rope to the trunk of the tree…
…but he had to climb into the tree to do it!

So finally the tree was ready to go, but it sat unlighted all week. This evening (Nov 19th) at 5:00, Mark and I joined the rest of the community for the tree lighting.

Then everyone stood around the tree singing Christmas carols and a minister read the Christmas story from Luke 2.
Can you guess who the Eskimo in the lower left corner is?

After the carols were sung, we all headed on foot over to the Mink River Basin, a restaurant just a few doors down from the Welcome Center where we had chili and cookies. Then Mark and I walked home. The experience gave us a real sense of community!

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