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Wrapped By Community



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Wrapped By Community

We share some of the best and some of the worst of the holiday season with large groups of people. There are times when it seems like a competition — for parking spaces, for in-stock bargains, and for a fast lane home. Our forced community with others becomes a great complication when we are desperately seeking the true peace and simplicity of the season. Then there are the times when we come willingly together in community, not to compete, but to complete that quest for peace and simplicity — in our places of worship, up and down our picturesque Main Street, and gathered around our public Christmas trees. This weekend, we again realize that latter, beneficial sense of our community with a series of tree lightings, various holiday events, and performances, winding up with the annual Holiday Festival along Main Street on Sunday.

While there will be keen competition for parking spaces close to the Ram Pasture Friday evening, even those who have to walk a distance to the 6:30 pm tree lighting will be calmed and guided on their approach by a spectacular display of luminarias. And at the appointed hour, with the help of a thousand voices or more raised in song and celebration, Newtown will spark the season to life with its great tree. For those who can’t make it Friday, tree lightings will follow on Saturday and Sunday in Sandy Hook and Hawleyville, respectively. They may be smaller in scale, but there will be no stinting on food, music, or Santas.

We will also be rubbing elbows at events throughout town, including the Christmas Boutique in the St Rose Parish Hall, beginning on Friday for a three-day run, the Rotary Club’s pancake breakfast with Santa Claus (How do you think he got his belly?), a holiday book sale at the Booth Library, and productions of A Child’s Christmas in Wales at the Little Theatre on Orchard Hill Road. All of this heralds the Holiday Festival itself on Sunday, which benefits Newtown Youth & Family Services. The festival fills the center of town with arts and crafts, gingerbread houses, impromptu performances, a Victorian tea party (nonpolitical, of course), decorated trees, and tours of four fine old homes all done up for the holidays.

It will be a weekend that promises to dissolve our resentment of crowds that builds up at this time of year — a weekend where it is possible to feel wrapped by community and not undone by it. Be a part of the crowd.

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