The organization was created in 1995 following the exodus of three main downtown businesses - McCrory's, J.C. Penneys and Routzahn's.
"All three of them left within a month. They were the biggest downtown businesses. That was when Waynesboro hit bottom. We needed to do something," Morningstar said.
The trees replaced this spring were planted 25 years ago as a downtown renovation project. Morningstar, 40, said he helped plant the trees, about 40 maples, when he was a teenage Eagle Scout.
Morningstar owns the Furniture Market on North Church Street in Waynesboro and Schiers Furniture Interiors in Chambersburg, Pa.
The old trees were planted in concrete planters. It cost $190 to remove the trees and planters and to cut squares in the sidewalks for the new ones. The new trees cost $170 to buy and plant. Merchants paid for the trees and the borough paid to remove the old ones.
Morningstar and Karen Mattscheck, marketing director for his businesses, have taken the lead in getting the street lights bought and installed.
Money for the lights will come from donations, Mattscheck said. Donations can range from $450 to buy and install a light to as little as $20. Owners of commercial and residential properties where the lights will be installed will pay about $30 a year for the electricity, he said.
The 60 lights are expected to be installed by next spring.