A flip of the switch and the night sky was lit by 10,000 lights. The multicolored pinpoints of fire against the darkened sky had all the kids ooohhhing and aaahhhing as Santa and Mrs. Claus talked to the youngsters. This moment was created by Shine & Hardin Law Offices along with Imagine Schools and Indiana’s NewsCenter with Lake City Bank, Magic 95.1 WAJI and neighboring Chappell’s Coral Grill and Seafood Market.
The tree lighting celebration was the first Christmas event of the 2008 season, and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect. The event brought back memories of the old Wolf & Dessauer Christmas scenes, the lighting of the Santa on Main Street and the Christmas animations that used to be in the Umbers Hardware window display in Waynedale.
This event was part of a continuing effort by Shine and Hardin, which began with a $250,000 plaza and a summer beautification project, back in May of 2005. Shine and Hardin’s years of investments in the neighborhood along with the cooperation of the neighborhood associations and adjacent businesses has had a positive effect on the local community attitude as well as the economy.
The 40-foot blue spruce was donated by former Waynedale resident Darlene Wade in memory of her late mother, Irene (Paris) Wade.
Darlene explained that when her mother first moved into her home in 1968, she purchased the 12-inch tall Blue Spruce at Franks Greenhouse on South Anthony Blvd. The tree was always decorated as a Christmas tree until it out-grew its decorations. At that time it would be spotlighted with colored lights over the Christmas holidays.
Steve Shine is a family friend and had talked to Wade about using the tree on Broadway for the annual lighting ceremony.
Unfortunately, Irene Wade passed away January 19, 2008 so it was with both sadness and celebration that Irene be remembered through the dedication of the tree that she purchased over 40 years ago.
The tree was anchored into the Broadway fountain by means of a 6 x 6 base of treated wood and on Friday night again found itself clothed in the spirit of the holidays with the sparkling brilliance of 10,000 Christmas lights.