Elmhurst Front Yard Christmas Tree Tradition" - where we put up small(ish) Christmas trees in our front yards and light them up to celebrate the season. Above is a photo of our tree this year. You'll note that most of the lights are off to the side (on the bottom left of the tree) - and that's because I was taking the tree down today and realized that I hadn't take a photo of the tree to post! So, mid-disassemble, I grabbed this photo - to mark the annual tradition before I shipped it off to the curb.
I kept putting this off, thinking that I'll wait for snow to be on the ground to make it a bit more seasonal. That snow never came.
The trees are $17 and are a fundraiser for the Elmhurst School District. One of our neighbors organizes it ever year and distributes slips of paper to each of mailboxes that are basically order forms. Then, on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, all the trees get delivered to her house. We all gather down there, sip on some hot chocolate, eat cookies and see our neighbors one last time before we all close up shop and get out of the cold for the winter! It is a really nice tradition for our neighbors...and...I *think* my sister Vic had something to do with bringing it to our block. I don't know the details, but Nat mentioned to me that we have Vic to thank for Indiana Street participating. It seems that her 'old' block in her first home in Elmhurst participated, so she brought the tradition with her. From what I've been told (not sure exactly from whom) that this tradition of decorating "front yard trees" in Elmhurst goes back decades. Not every block participates, but there are some (like ours) that just about everybody has a tree. South of our neighborhood - across the tracks - there's a block that does a really great job and gets a high level of participation.
There isn't a lot written on the web about these trees, so I always get some traffic (and comments) about them when they start to pop up each season - on past posts like this one from last year.
If you're new to town and/or your block doesn't participate, drop me a line/comment and I can introduce you to our neighbor who organizes it for us - I'm sure she'd be happy to get you/your block lined up with the school to get trees delivered!
BTW...the 2010 tree photo is way prettier - with all the snow. But the 2009 tree was even better with a HUGE snow dump the night before I took the shot.