This week’s guest columnist is Sue Stuhl, Farragut Parks & Recreation director
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for lights, moving reindeer, Santa on the roof – in other words I’m ready for holiday decorating. And apparently, I am not alone.
During my early morning or evening walks this last week, I saw more and more houses with holiday decorations already in place. In a normal year I might wish that people would wait until the day after Thanksgiving so that we can take one holiday at a time and savor it. But for 2020, I say “bring it on.”
Any extra measure of joy this year is welcome – especially one that can be done within all the COVID-19 guidelines (outside, social distancing, in the car, etc.) With our infection rates rising and the need to stop gathering, I see a return to the ’50s and ’60s when mom and dad piled all the kids in the car and made an evening of driving around to see the lights and decorations.
In keeping with that sentiment, the Town of Farragut Arts & Beautification Committee added a holiday competition this year – Fun Festive Farragut.
For the past 35+ years, the Town of Farragut has been bestowing annual beautification awards to worthy subdivisions, churches and businesses during the summer or early fall. We value the efforts that these institutions make in keeping our Town beautiful. Due to COVID-19, those awards were cancelled this year but the committee made lemonade out of lemons and chose to honor one entity in each of those same categories plus one individual residence in each ward (north and south sides of Kingston Pike) for holiday decorations.
So here is the skinny! Get those glue guns heated up and get to work on installing those icicles, bows, lights, greenery or whatever suits your fancy.
If you are an individual residence, send your address to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or call us at 865-218-3376 no later than Dec. 7. You can also nominate your neighbors. If you are a stand-alone business, part of a multi-tenant building, a church, subdivision (entrance) or multi-family building, we have you on the list already to check out.
Staff will be taking photos/videos of entries starting on Dec. 8, judging will be done by the Arts & Beautification Committee on Dec. 14 and awards will be announced via social media on Dec. 15. If you win in any category, you will receive a $25 gift card and staff will place a sign in your yard signifying your achievement. Plus, we will put your location on a map/list posted on the Farragut Parks & Recreation website so that our community can enjoy your hard work. The only rule is that you must be located within the Town of Farragut boundaries.
If COVID-19 has taught me anything, it is to slow down and savor the simpler things and appreciate what I do have. This won’t be the year to hold my granddaughter at her first Christmas or read the “Night Before Christmas” to my 3-year old grandson on my lap, but I will be thankful for Facetime, Zoom and outside visits. And my walks may last longer for the next six or so weeks while I enjoy what my neighbors have created for the season.