Christmas Spirit Gets a Boost, So Does Chamber Scholarship Fund
By Jason Jones
CROCKETT – Seeing a plan come together is always uplifting. When that plan accomplishes more than one goal, the excitement grows even more.
For the second year in a row, Crockett Civic Center has welcomed area businesses to bring and decorate Christmas trees for display in the Civic Center lobby. The trees, combined with a serene atmosphere which is often accompanied by holiday music wafting overhead, provide a beautiful setting for visitors to enjoy.
Crockett Area Chamber of Commerce Director Liza Clark explained the inspiration behind the display. “Last year, when COVID caused so many celebrations to be scaled back or cancelled, it seemed so isolated and bleak here,” Clark said. “I felt like we needed to make this a place where people could visit and feel the spirit of the season.”
Clark reached out to several businesses in the area and convinced them to come spread some holiday cheer. Businesses paid $50 last year to decorate a tree in a way that not only represented them but showed the strength and resolve of the community.
“Last year Grapeland Urgent Care decorated a tree using masks and a large ornament that looked like the COVID virus!” Clark said. While the idea seems like an odd choice on paper, it showed the clinic’s resolve to not only tirelessly battle the pandemic but take something negative and create beauty.
The clinic was voted to a third-place win by the public.
The turnout for last year’s display was a total of seven trees. This year the turnout has been even better. There are currently thirteen trees on display with room for more. Last year’s winner was Elastotech, whose tree was decorated entirely with ornaments made from rubber seals manufactured by the company. Second place went to Crockett EID, followed by the Grapeland Urgent care tree.
“This year we increased the fee to participate to $75. Every dollar of that goes into our scholarship fund for area students,” Clark said. Suddenly the idea of Christmas spirit gets a little more joyful.
The public is enthusiastically invited to visit the display. The Civic Center will be open from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Monday – Friday during November, except for Thanksgiving. The same schedule will continue during December, but extended hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays until 7 p.m. will allow visitors to witness the display in the evening, making for an even more exciting show of lights.
Visitors will be able to vote on their favorite tree, and first, second and third places will be awarded. A reception will be held on December 9 at 6 p.m. at the Civic Center auditorium where winners will be presented with a plaque commemorating their efforts as voted by the public.
For more information or to decorate a tree for your business, contact Liza Clark with the Crockett Area Chamber of Commerce at (936) 544-2359.
Jason Jones may be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org