Downsville church members gather for trimming, singing

December 06, 2004|by BRIAN SHAPPELL

DOWNSVILLE - Every tradition has to start somewhere.

In Downsville, it was a grassy patch at the intersection of Md. 63 and Md. 632 where members of the Downsville Church of the Brethren gathered for Christmas tree decorating and caroling that they hope will become a yearly event.

About two dozen town residents huddled at Downsville's main intersection to decorate and sing many Christmas staples. Unfettered by the noise of the engines of passing cars and the dropping temperature, the group belted out versions of "Deck the Halls" and "Jingle Bells," among others, for about 30 minutes.

Jaye Kline, a Downsville Church of the Brethren member who helped organize the event, said it was the first year the church has gathered residents for the decorating and singing.


"Every town has their festival. It was time for Downsville to have ours," said Kline. "We hope it gets bigger every year."

Kline, standing in front of a tree decked out in bows and assorted colored lights, said the church wanted to have the event to help draw out some of its neighbors who may not be familiar with the congregation.

Church member Linda Matheny said it was a good opportunity to meet new people and to get into the holiday spirit.

"I just like to sing carols and wanted to be part of the Christmas cheer," Matheny said.

At least one smiling caroler, 4-year-old Erin Mohn, apparently liked singing so much that she launched into a verse of one song as several adults still thumbed through pages to get to the lyrics.

Melissa Hudson was one of several people who walked from their nearby homes to give their children a taste of the popular Christmas songs.

"I thought this would be a good opportunity for the kids because we usually don't get to carol," Hudson said.

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