So the other day a social media post about the Oil City Christmas tree still being up came across my newsfeed. This prompted me to get a little 'cute' on another person's post about seeking suggestions about things to do in and around Oil City.
"Help take down the Xmas tree? haha" I suggested to my friend.
I chose snark to hopefully get a cheap laugh.
It received a reply from one of the chief organizers of the Christmas tree effort and the festivities around the holiday that adds to the beauty of living in a small community.
He jabbed back with a suggestion to come help.
He also said the plan was to take the tree down the following Sunday. So I decided to write a little tongue-in-cheek story to let folks know there was indeed a plan to take it down before April Fools' Day.
I also posted a link to the story on social media so hopefully folks who have been complaining would know there is a plan in place.
What was once a great symbol of community - lit up during the holiday showing pride and care of place, is now faded and just looks like another thing not being taken care of.
One of the spokespeople responsible for giving the gift of this tree wonders what the big deal is? He said it is a "green" tree in the middle of the park. He also mentioned that volunteers and people stepping up to do this do it for the community and that they are always looking for more to join in and help out. The Oil City Rotary Club, which organizes this gift to the community, would love more people signing up to help with all their community efforts.
He brought to light several very good points. The green tree perhaps not as it is now greenish brown with a blanket of needles underneath. One can see from the road that is it well passed its prime.
All of this was supposed to be a moot point by today because the plan was to take the tree down on Sunday. If you've driven around Town Square today you would've noted that it was not. Here is what organizers say happened - weather.
The City of Oil City Fire Department helps the Rotary and everything was set to go with them to bring their ladder truck down to help take down the lights and tree. The cold and snow made this an unnecessary risk of equipment and personnel. It was postponed again.
So it stands still until it can be organized with it's many moving parts again.
A couple folks on social media mentioned planting a tree instead of bringing a chopped down one each year. Though on the surface this sounds reasonable there are many reasons this isn't the best of ideas.
For one, Town Square Park is a multifunctional park. A tree in the center limits the ability to do many of the things they currently do there.
Earlier this season I had a discussion with another person who spends countless hours to get a tree for their town (you do realize most towns don't even go through this effort right?). She brought up a few great points why a live tree isn't ideal.
To transplant a permanent tree you have to live for several years with a less than spectacular much smaller display at first. Then you get a handful of optimal years and eventually the tree is either too big to decorate or it is time to take it down. Then you can't just plant another tree there because the old root system is still there. So, though it seems like a logical solution it is not.
Loits of things to consider.
They do this to give holiday hope and joy to their town, as well as all of you who swing by the city. Perhaps that effort needs to be applauded and not berated? Perhaps folks could join the Rotary and become active in their community instead of just being keyboard warriors? There are a lot of perhaps's to go around.
We all know the absolute least glamorous part of any task is the cleanup. You can imagine the excitement of the build-up, but, unless you're the youngest brother of brothers who liked to build things, you probably can't imagine the cleanup. From the youngest brother perspective, let me tell you cleaning up sucks.
So its easy to complain, it is harder to pony up some effort to help.
So what does that say about us?