Although hundreds, perhaps even a couple thousand people at this point, have seen the greenery and ribbons decorating the Victorian lamp posts in downtown Warren, tonight's Christmas Parade and Walk will be their official show-off.
Thanks to the efforts of a few volunteers, and downtown shop-owner Dan Ristau in particular, our naked stanchions are now dressed for the season in a particularly appropriate style.
It was touch-and-go there for a while when no one was quite sure what to do. Then it happened: cooperation, innovation and volunteerism, the three vital components for progress.
The residents of the Borough of Tidioute have been Tying the Greens as a community project for dozens of years, turning the job of be-decking their town for Christmas into an event in itself.
Necessity being the mother of invention, perhaps the experience of the past few days has taught Warren a few lessons.
First, an old-fashioned Victorian atmosphere may be less appropriate for flashy lights and glitter than it is for the basic beauty that evergreen boughs and simple bows. In fact, we think what was placed on the poles Wednesday was lovely.
Second, combining volunteer elbow grease with some help from the city's Department of Public Works was a natural partnership. We are all in this together; placing all of the burden on one side or the other is both inefficient and unfair. Yes, the decorations may benefit downtown businesses, but they are also a source of pride for all residents of the city; thus the city should be involved. At the same time, in these times of fiscal uncertainty, city government should not be assumed to shoulder all of the expense or responsibility.
The bottom line here is that tonight, as crowds descend on the downtown area to enjoy the parade and the arrival of the Jolly Old Elf, we can put thoughts of discontent behind us and simply enjoy the evening.