For many years, the lighting of the Christmas tree in McMullen Park in Verona was an annual tradition. Many people can still remember Ross Clow up on a trailer, singing Christmas carols and strumming his guitar with bare hands in the frigid cold.
But the lights were taking a toll on the old tree and the festivities were moved up to Lions Park where the Verona Community Association kept the tradition alive to a certain extent.
But this year, the VCA had to bow out, so the Lions Club stepped up.
“There’s traditionally been something for the kids at the end of November,” said Doreen Morey, Lions Treasurer. “The VCA couldn’t do it this year but we didn’t want the kids to go without.
“It used to be a joint effort down at McMullen Park and this year, we’re reminiscing back to that with a big tree out back that the Brown family donated.
“The kids are making decorations for it.”
Morey said they did kinda put everything together at the last minute, but everything seemed to have worked out.
“Everything was donated,” she said. “We had a lot of local help and people just seemed to come out of the woodwork.
“We wanted to do it after the free skate (which the VCA arranged for the P.A. day on Friday).
“We didn’t know how many would show up but we’re ready for whoever does.”
And show up they did.
They were treated to chilli, hot dogs, fries and treats, a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus and even a bonfire out back where the “Three Wise Men” had marshmallows and sticks ready for the kids.
“Some of us are wiser than others,” said one of the three.