A town that is not afraid to say 'Merry Christmas'

| 15 Feb 2012 | 10:39

    Every year for the past 30 years, a magical experience takes place in the small fishing harbor town of Kennebunkport, Maine. Located just 300 miles north of Monroe, it is situated on the Atlantic Ocean and the Kennebunk River. The center of town is Dock Square, surrounded by quaint little shops, restaurants and galleries. The first weekend in December, hundreds of visitors flock to this town to enjoy the Christmas Prelude festivities planned and organized by local businesses, schools, churches and non profits. The Christmas tree is the central focus of Dock Square, adorned with buoys and wooden lobsters topped with a lobster holding a golden star. Having missed the last four years, how refreshing to return to Dock Square to witness the candlelight caroling, horse and buggy rides, chestnuts roasting on an open fire and of course, the Christmas tree-lighting ceremony. The high school chorus begins to arrive at dusk, and the crowd anxiously awaits the wonderful melodies of the Christmas season. As their magical voices begin filtering through people dressed with funny Christmas hats, no one seems to question the choice of songs - “Silent Night,” “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” “Away in a Manager” in addition to “Jingle Bells” and “Frosty the Snowman.” Such a spirit you wish could be bottled and distributed throughout the land. I get the feeling that in our quest for tolerance of our diverse religions and traditions, we have somehow become more intolerant of the traditions the majority of our fellow countrymen have been celebrating for centuries. Dec. 25th comes around each year and guess what, it’s Christmas Day, the day we celebrate and remember the birth of Christ - “Tis the reason for the season.” If it is offensive to you, no one is forcing anyone to participate. Relax, enjoy the day off from work and the well wishes being offered to you during a season that should be filled with joy and merriment to all. My first wish for everyone is a healthy, happy and peaceful Season regardless of your traditions. My second wish is that we stop this nonsense and not take offense when someone says to you, “Merry Christmas”. My third wish is that everyone could visit Kennebunkport, Maine, the first weekend in December to experience what it means to celebrate a magical traditional Christmas. Carol Scully Monroe