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POWNAL — The Pownal Historical Society, with help from the Pownal Parks and Rec Committee, is organizing a Nov. 28 community tree lighting on the Pownal Town Green near the Town Offices and the Center Street Church. Also being organized is a “Pownal Lights Community Map” for holiday tours of participating decorated homes.

Organizers said the Community Tree Lighting and “Pownal Lights Tour Map” are the brainchild of Pownal Historical Society Treasurer Joyce Held. Her vision is to help bring joy, unity, and an opportunity for community-wide collaboration to what has been a difficult year for many.

The newly formed Pownal Parks and Rec Committee held a special meeting to offer its help. After this meeting, Select Board Liaison Rebecca Dragon presented the idea and received permission from the Board to purchase lights for the large spruce tree outside of the town offices, and to hold a lighting if state COVID-19 guidelines allowed.

Due to the most recent guidelines, the idea of a live, in-person event had to be scaled back. If the funds can be raised for purchasing lights, the tree lighting will be held via Facebook Livestream on both the Town of Pownal Official Facebook group and the Facebook page “Pownal Vermont Annual Holiday Tree Lighting” at 5 p.m. on Nov. 28.

In addition to lighting the tree on Center Street, the tree lighting organizers are asking Pownal residents to consider decorating their homes and allowing their homes to be placed on a “Pownal Lights Tour” map. This way, throughout the holiday season, families can drive and see more of the town. Participating homes are asked to turn their lights on at the same time, 5 p.m. on Nov. 28.

“As a community we will be lighting up the skies of Pownal,” Held said. “The more homes that are decorated, from candles in the windows to outdoor decorations, the brighter it will be. The Pownal Community Lights Tour Map will allow everyone to drive around this season and enjoy the season bright! Please consider lighting up your home and going to the ‘Pownal Vermont Annual Holiday Tree Lighting’ Facebook page to put your home on the map.”

Financial donations are being sought for the purchase of the lights for the community tree. The group is looking at lights made especially for larger trees and public installations. Organizers said the lights will be kept for years to come, and expressed hopes that this will become an annual holiday tradition.

Donations are being accepted at https://www.freefunder.com/campaign/pownal-holiday-tree. People who want to make a financial donation by check or cash can reach out directly to Held at heldja@comcast.net or to Rebecca Dragon at board.liaison@townofpownal.org. As of Tuesday, the drive was halfway to its goal of $1,500.

Children and families are asked to create decorations for the tree.

Boxes for Pownal Food Pantry donations will be at the tree on Nov. 29. Other locations will be announced on the Facebook page.


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