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Teens pick up spirit of Christmas

November 30, 1999|By ERIN JULIUS

WILLIAMSPORT ? Two Williamsport teenagers are spreading Christmas cheer in a way that would make Jeff Foxworthy proud.

After duct-taping 400 colored Christmas lights to a green 1987 Ford F-250, Brian Cornett and Randy Hart, both 16, have been driving around Valley Mall beeping a "Dukes of Hazzard" horn at exhausted shoppers.

"That's different. It's good for the Christmas spirit," said Carla Bricker, who watched Brian pull into the Valley Mall parking lot Thursday night.

The two Williamsport High School juniors decorated Brian's truck on Sunday for a school project. Lights line the front window, back window, cab and the bed of the truck.

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In their Honors English 11 class, they are studying transcendentalism, which was a 19th-century protest against accepted religious and philosophical doctrine. Students had to break a social norm for an assignment, Brian said. The teenagers had to turn in an essay detailing how they broke a norm, Randy said.

"This was out of the ordinary," he said.

Brian considered decorating his truck for awhile, and the assignment was a good opportunity, he said.

"Not too many people do this," Brian said. "They don't have a way to plug it in."

The strings of Christmas lights on Brian's truck are hooked into a power inverter, which is plugged into the cigarette lighter, he said.

"We had to break a social norm for one day," Brian said. "I've been doing it for a week."

When shoppers see him, they smile and wave. As he drives around town, people honk their horns, Brian said.

They would have put more lights on the truck this year, but the inverter only has power for about 400.

Next year, Brian wants to get more lights and plug them into a generator, he said. He plans to keep the generator in the bed of the truck, where people couldn't hear it over the roar of the diesel engine, Brian said.

The only thing missing from the festive scene is a Santa hat and Christmas carols.

Brian said he doesn't own a Santa hat, and he can't blare Christmas carols as he drives around because the inverter drains the battery too quickly if the radio is on.

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