For Frankford resident Toni Presley and her family, decorating her house and door is really “just for fun.”
The Town of Frankford has held a house- and door-decorating contest for some 20 years, noted Town Clerk Terry Truitt. With a struggling economy, she said, they understand why some people can’t or don’t get involved, but each year they hope for a few more participants to help the whole town get into the Christmas spirit.
Each year, the town council votes whether to hold the contest and what the prizes will be. Judges who are not council members go out sometime after the second week of December, but always before Christmas, to judge the decorations.
There are prizes given for first, second, and third places for Best Overall decorating, and first and second for Best Door, as well as 10 Honorable Mentions. This year, first-, second- and third-place winners will be given $75, $50 and $25, respectively, for Best Overall, and Best Door winners are being given $50 for first and $25 for second place. Each Honorable Mention garners $10, although the prizes are hardly the incentive.
“People just do it for fun,” shared Presley. “And what got us started was we are a very close family and we like doing things together.”
She said she usually concentrates on her door, making it simple, as that is more her style, and her husband goes all out with the lights as a celebration of the season. “It’s the more the merrier to him,” she joked.
But, she said, it is the true meaning of Christmas that they try to highlight, complete with a manger scene in the yard.
“Our manger scene was an addition two years ago in the front yard. The true meaning of Christmas for us is the birth of the Christ child, so we center everything around that, and the rest is just to be part of the town and look pretty. Basically, it’s just a fun thing to do.”
Truitt said the Town itself got involved this year, lighting up the park with several small stations of lights, similar to a “mini-Winterfest of Lights.”
She said she knows it can be a struggle for people to afford extra things, such as the lights, and the town wanted there to be a central place of beauty and lights to inspire people this season. Still, they hope even more people decorate their own homes, so the town can be lit up as a whole.