What we think: Celebration of Lights is too early

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City of Shelbyville's annual event should be moved closer to Thanksgiving.

We love the holiday season and all that it represents. We are glad so many in our county embrace that season and present many wonderful opportunities to celebrate. But we have a suggestion:

The Celebration of Lights is celebrated too early.

This community festival, the county’s largest, is a wonderful event to bring the public to downtown Shelbyville, to erect the city’s Christmas tree and to light up the season.

But we think its scheduling nearly two weeks before Thanksgiving is out of perspective.

For decades the national clock on Christmas – regardless of store displays and commercials – was the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City, which brought Santa to town for the season.

And if that has been good enough for event-crazy New York, we think it’s a tradition that should be reinforced here.

We suggest that the Friday or Saturday after Thanksgiving – yes even the day so terribly called Black Friday – would be wonderfully appropriate for the Celebration of Lights, the perfect time to expand the holiday weekend experience.

Or how about this: the Celebration of Lights on Friday and the annual Christmas parade the next morning?

That would create a centerpiece weekend for all Shelby Countians to share, and the events in communities such as Simpsonville, Mount Eden and others could follow.

Yes, we understand that the Celebration of Lights is more of a marketing tool for the business owners in Shelbyville than a true celebration of the season for the community.

But in the true spirit of Christmas, let’s not leave it as it is.

Let’s no longer let Thanksgiving – and the values that it embraces – be the first victim of the Christmas Rush.