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Contest has done a lot to brighten up the community

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A Closer L ook

Hartington seems quite a bit brighter than usual these days. Maybe it’s the new street lights. Maybe it’s because of the light refracting off of the never-ending snowbanks throughout town after all these winter storms. Or maybe, it’s because I finally cleaned all the mud off the headlights of my truck.

While these could all be factors in brightening up the little world around us, I personally think the sudden illumination here is because community members have really gotten behind a Hartington Chamber of Commerce promotion to help the community get into the Christmas spirit.

The Chamber launched a business Christmas decorating contest just before the start of Candlelight Christmas this year.

It was a big success with several businesses going all out to dress up their stores for the Holiday season. That contest was then followed up by a residential lighting contest. That contest drew 25 contestants from around town and from just outside of town. At least 25 other homes were decorated so well that they could have easily been in the contest too, had they decided to enter.

Both contests have gone a long way toward helping area resi dents catch the Christmas spirit.

After all, how can you not put a smile on your face after driving through town and seeing all the various Santa Clauses, snow men, Christmas wreathes, reindeer and candy canes either hanging on houses or adorned in yards.

The lighting contest has turned the town into a true Christmas paradise.

To anyone out there that has not yet taken the time to check ou t all the light displays, please do so. It’s well worth your time. And to all those folks that thought about putting out decorations, but simply couldn’t find the time or energy, just think how beautiful the town could be next Christmas if you and your neighbors decided to join in the fun.