Lyndeborough Town Hall’s new Christmas tree a community effort

LYNDEBOROUGH – It was an impromptu, spur-of-the-moment kind of thing, but it all came together beautifully. There is a decorated Christmas tree in front of Lyndeborough Town Hall for the first time.

When the elderly and scraggly spruce tree was removed from the little common, the Heritage Commission suggested a Christmas tree would be nice.

The selectmen thought it was a good idea, too, and then Selectman Fred Douglas said he would see to it. He placed a piece of plastic pipe in the ground to hold the tree, getting it in place just before the ground froze.

Administrative Assistant Cindi Hastings said it would be nice if the students at Lyndeborough Central School could get involved and make some ornaments. She said she would inquire.

In the meantime, Douglas and his wife, Lynda, donated and decorated a small tree.

With only a few days to do so, students in grades kindergarten through five produced more than 60 weatherproof ornaments. Decorations included balls, candy canes, silver bells, stars and tiny wreaths.

Because of the timing, logistics and the distance from the school to the tree, getting students to Town Hall was unrealistic. Two of the town’s older citizens were asked if they like to would put them on the tree.

On Saturday, Dec. 21, former Road Agent Clayton Brown and longtime Town and School Moderator Jim “Bud” McEntee, did the honors, cheered on from the sidelines by their wives, sisters Polly and Peg, who hinted the men didn’t decorate trees at home.

It is hoped to make the tree trimming an annual event, allowing more time for students to make ornaments and arrangements made for them to decorate the tree. Douglas said he would like a different person or organization to sponsor it each year. Eventually, a permanent tree will be planted.

It is also hoped that a method of lighting the tree will be found. It is across the driveway from Town Hall, so an extension cord could not be used this year. Town Hall is a social venue and is officially used only for voting and is closed from Veterans Day to Town Meeting to save fuel.

The planting of the original spruce tree was also an impromptu event in the early 1950s.

Brown said he was working with his father-in-law, then-Road Agent Earl Bullard, loading sand from a small pit on Old Temple Road.

“The top of the bank sort of slid down and this little spruce tree came with it. It was such a nice tree, we decided to plant it,” Brown said. They chose the space in front of Town Hall, at that time being used as town offices.

That tree was in poor condition and was removed earlier this year.

The tree decorating turned into a kind of party, a good time had by all in spite of the chill breeze.