By JUDY SHERIDAN
Parker County residents who pass the historic courthouse have begun to see stars — in a good way.
Thursday morning, four of them, trimmmed in lights, were lifted to the structure’s very top.
Reminiscent of those that heralded Christmases 20 years ago, the 6-foot high and 6-foot wide white stars will be visible in all directions.
They are the first of the decorations to be unveiled by the Parker County Christmas Committee, which has raised $21,000 in donations and pledges so far, according to committee chairperson Donna Tillman.
“We expected great interest in this, and everyone’s been very positive about the lights going up and bringing the courthouse back to her former glory,” Tillman said. “We’ve paid for the tree and most of the stars at this point.”
The centerpiece of the festive decor will be a 30-foot tall, 16-foot wide artificial tree, to be erected in the center of the east lawn a week before a tree-lighting ceremony set for Saturday, Nov. 30. The stars will also be lit at that time.
The ceremony, which follows a 6 p.m. private reception for donors, has been set for 7 p.m.
The large Christmas tree will bear white lights and a crowning star that matches those illuminating the courthouse.
In addition, the familiar nativity scene is being spruced up with a coat of paint and new lighting, Tillman said. It will be displayed on the west lawn, along with a group of five or six live trees strung with lights.
The committee also plans to put flickering battery-timed candles in every window, she said, while courthouse employees spread Christmas cheer through the rest of the interior.
“We want it to be a shining beacon for the whole county,” Tillman said.
The decorations will make the courthouse a focal point, Tillman said, as it was in days gone by.
Coincidentally, the tree-lighting ceremony lines up with a 5-10 p.m. event that Weatherford’s downtown merchants are planning, she said, one that will include carolers, carriage rides and other Christmas activities.
The following week is Christmas-on-the-Square, she said, and after that, the annual Tour of Homes, which will spotlight the decorated courthouse.
Tillman said the Christmas Committee hopes to add to the decorations next year. On the wish list are lights that would drape from the new stars to the ground on all four corners, another nod to yesteryear.
Light a candle
Residents who want to honor or remember a loved one can sponsor a candle for one of the courthouse windows for $20. Each candle sponsor, along with the name of the person the candle is dedicated to, will be listed in the program for the lighting ceremony.
In addition, all names will be placed in the Commissioner Court minutes for permanent record, and the candles will be used for years to come.
Those who would like to sponsor a candle can contact Judge Mark Riley at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling his office at 817-598-6148.
Buy a print
Prints of the courthouse, commissioned by First National Bank, can also be purchased by contacting Lori Bennett at Hartness Print Square in Weatherford at 817-594-6020. The proceeds go to the Christmas Lighting Committee.
For more information or to make a donation, call Tillman at Holland Lake Nursing Center in Weatherford at 817-598-0160.
By JUDY SHERIDAN
- Aledo ExtrA
ASK A MASTER GARDENER: Is it too early to start a vegetable garden?
Considering our winter temperatures this year, that’s a good question. When it comes to a successful vegetable garden, timing is everything. The goal in Texas is to have most of your vegetable crops mature before the temperatures soar in mid-summer.
EXTENSION NEWS: Getting more zzzs could help you lose some lbs.
We spend about one-third of our lifetime sleeping. Sleep is important for learning and memory. Sleep also helps our immune system to resist illness and disease, increases response times in emergencies, improves our mood and feelings of wellness and gives us the energy we need to be more active and alert.
VETERANS’ CORNER: Soldiers, families warned about latest Internet scam
The Army’s Criminal Investigation Command is warning about a new website scam in which criminals are attempting to take advantage of soldiers and their families.
Count of area homeless youth begins Monday
ACH Child and Family Services, Tarrant County Homeless Coalition, Crossroads Youth Ministries of Parker County and University of Texas-Arlington are conducting the first ever youth count in Tarrant and Parker counties for unaccompanied youth, ages 13-24, in unstable living arrangements (i.e., shelters, streets, couch surfing).
CASA seeks 100 new advocates to represent children in CPS care
In Spanish, casa means home, but for thousands of abused and neglected children, it’s an acronym that has even more meaning – it’s the hope of finally finding a safe, permanent home where they can thrive.
Spivack to speak at PCRW event
Parker County Republican Women will have Loren Spivack as the March 13 luncheon meeting guest speaker.
State education board candidates in runoff
Tuesday’s voting tallies signified an extremely tight race for State Board of Education District 11 candidates in the Republican primary.
Renfro in runoff for job he didn’t want
Precinct 4 Commissioner Dusty Renfro, who unexpectedly scored 1,213 votes in Tuesday’s Republican Primary while campaigning for an opponent, is still trying to lose his job on the Parker County Commissioners’ Court.
Area council, school board filings
Filings for school board and city council elections in May ended last Friday. Here are the filings for area city council seats open in May:
ALEDO – Patricia Weckel, 60, died Tuesday, March 4, 2014, surrounded by family at her home in Aledo.
- More Aledo ExtrA Headlines
- ASK A MASTER GARDENER: Is it too early to start a vegetable garden?