Luminaries at Ligonier Diamond spread warmth, remembrance, tradition
There are few things quite as simple as the warm glow of candle light to help kindle the enchantment of the holiday season, and the annual Christmas luminary project, sponsored by the Ligonier Valley Chamber of Commerce, brings to life this homey spirit.
Each holiday season, in coordination with the lighting of the Ligonier Diamond, luminated containers are placed on the sidewalks outside of local merchant shops during weekend evenings, lining the town's streets with a cornucopia of parallel incandescence.
“This tradition has lasted eons,” laughed chairwoman of the luminary lighters and owner of Second Chapter Books Laurie McGinnis. “It's so beautiful. We are very lucky to have what we have. When you look up the street and see those lights, there is something very charming about that.”
To some, the radiance holds a magnitude of significance. Some non-retail residents of Main Street are also taking part this year. Luminary customs such as this stretch from China to South America, and, evidently to Ligonier. Some age-old theories to the beginnings of the luminary brightness include a vehicle for which children could light the way to spiritual guidance or for the arrival of Santa Claus. For many, the soft ebb acts as a homage to the memory of a loved one passed.
Behind Ligonier's own cozy amber blush are also the volunteers. This year including members of the Valley Youth Network, the Chestnut Ridge 4-H Club and six individuals, who take the time to bring in the lights each weekend evening at 8 o'clock.
“We had families who said they'd like to help,” said 4-H organizational leader Amy Andrews. “The lights have been there for years — they really add that little extra touch.”
Youth Valley Network intern Elizabeth Ashy testified to the brilliance, and Yuletide assistance, as well.
“I've done this since high school,” Ashy explained. “It's really awesome what Ligonier does each year for the Christmas season. We have a large group of students who don't mind to come out in the cold — they love it.”
Rebecca Ridinger is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.