Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Season's Greetings 2004

Season's Greetings 2004, originally uploaded by The MediaMentor.

Photo by Kathy Beaupre kaybeaupreAThotmailDOTcom, design by George Lessard mediaATwebDOTnet

Tree climber answers mayor's Christmas prayer
WebPosted Nov 29 2004 02:28 PM MST

FORT SMITH, N.W.T. - The Christmas season officially started in Fort Smith on Sunday with the traditional lighting of the town's 30-metre spruce tree.

Decorating the 100-year-old tree in the centre of town has been a community tradition since the Great Depression.

But it almost didn't happen this year, after the N.W.T. Power Corporation staff who usually decorate the tree were unable to do it this month.

That sent Mayor Peter Martselos on a quest for a tree climber.

"I have to look around to find someone to climb the tree. I tell you I had many nights I never slept because I was worried who was going up and if there was an accident or something it won't be Christmas in Fort Smith," he says.

"But we found David Burke and he climbed the tree to the top and that's why this year it's special, because we have a star at the top and lights from top to bottom."

Hundreds gathered in the downtown Sunday night to cheer as the tree was lit up with brand-new strings of lights.

Martselos says the new energy efficient lights are more expensive, but are sturdier and said to last 100,000 hours.

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