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OPINION

GOOD MORNING: Holiday Lights still needs volunteers

Jerrie Whiteley
Herald Democrat
Jerrie Whiteley

Grayson County Holiday Light is just a little over a week away from kicking off for the 20th season. How can that be? I remember the very first day that they announced the project and then Judge Horace Groff showed off the drawing of what the displays would look like when they were all put in.

Since then, hundreds of volunteers have put their time and effort into making it the success it has become. And thousands of people have contributed the money that keeps it going every year. Grayson Count tax payers don't support Holiday Lights at Loy Park, but Grayson County folks do in a big way.

As someone who has been there since the beginning, I can say that I have watched this thing go from an idea kicked around by two very community-minded leaders to something that has become a holiday tradition for local families in a number of different ways.

I can't tell you the number of times people have said their grandchildren will not go to bed on weekend nights if they don't get to drive through the lights first at Christmas time. And others have said their spouse demands to go on the weekends too. I happen to know there have been a few folks who have popped the big question, martially speaking, right out there. And I hear tell that in some families when they leave home on Christmas Eve to go to the lights, Santa has not arrived at their home. But, by the time they get back from the lights, Santa has been there and dropped off some presents!

The lights offer a place for to come and enjoy the sparkle of the season without worrying about commerciality of the holiday. Sure, the whole thing relies on donations, but no one is going to tell anyone how much they need to donate to drive through. And doing it that way for all of these years has allowed people to be as generous as they felt they could each time they come through. 

Speaking of generosity, few local events have been the subject of so much generosity of spirit and talent as Holiday Lights. People who show up to take in the donations each night really make the whole event work. There are still some slots left for this year and it is easy to sign up. Just follow the link https://www.signupgenius.com/go/805044fa5ad22abf85-holiday and follow the directions. 

The lights get turned on  night after Thanksgiving and will stay on until through Dec. 27. 

One of the best things about taking up donations at the event is getting to see the look of wonder on the faces of the people who have just driven through. That, and getting to see the puppy dogs that come through with their humans.

Happy birthday to Jesse Neal of Bells, Randy Simmons of Sherman and Melva Shurgart of Yantis.