Community excels at giving and sharing


October 25, 2023 | View PDF

While it seems holiday advertising starts earlier and earlier (and earlier) every year — even further in advance than election campaign advertising, which is annoying enough — it’s not too early for the community to think about sharing this holiday season.

Thanksgiving is just a month away; Christmas and New Year’s another month after that. Planning events, rounding up volunteers, collecting names and donations, buying food and gifts all takes time, as does checking the calendar twice to avoid scheduling conflicts.

Wrangell has long excelled at giving and sharing. Not that the town is wealthy — far from it. But it’s a compassionate community that cares about friends and neighbors, always trying its best to ensure that no one is left off the holiday list of food and fun.

Whether it’s The Salvation Army’s food baskets, the American Legion’s annual Christmas party for children or Hospice of Wrangell’s Christmas Tree Lane display, the town’s holiday calendar fills up fast. Hospice also sponsors its annual Dove Tree Ceremony, providing a way for people to remember loved ones who died.

The community chorale is scheduled for its holiday concert in December, just as the community theater group is rehearsing for “Cinderella” to take the stage in December. Music is a special part of holidays for all cultures and faiths, and Wrangell is no different.

Yet it’s always been hard for families in financial stress to look forward to happy and festive holidays when just paying for food and utilities alone can strain their budgets. To its credit, the community has long done a great job of making sure no one is forgotten.

Not to throw a lump of coal at holiday plans, but Wrangell certainly has a long list of expensive challenges ahead, none of which have easy answers and all of which will require public money to solve: Adequate funding for schools, repairing the rot-damaged Public Safety Building, rebuilding and maybe moving the barge ramp and freight staging area, upgrading the water treatment plant and sewage plant.

Putting aside those dark clouds, however, it’s time to call on everyone in town who can help these next couple of months to step up and offer their time, donations, ideas, old decorations, cooking skills or whatever else is handy to ensure no one is forgotten over the holidays. It’s a community tradition.

— Wrangell Sentinel


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