Town tree adorned by Cub Scouts

By Janice Steinhagen - Staff Writer
Voluntown - posted Mon., Dec. 3, 2012
David and Paul Verdolino lead the singing of Christmas songs at the tree-lighting ceremony. Photos by Janice Steinhagen.
David and Paul Verdolino lead the singing of Christmas songs at the tree-lighting ceremony. Photos by Janice Steinhagen.

The occasion was intended to be a mix of solemnity and good cheer, but the 6-year-old boys clutching the battery-operated candles had other ideas. “Boys – they’re not light sabers,” admonished one of the adults. “Don’t play with the bulbs. They are glass and they can break.”

Cub Scout Pack 74 of Voluntown ushered in the Christmas season Dec. 1 with its annual Christmas tree decorating and lighting ceremony. Boys and their families gathered at the town gazebo to adorn a tree with ornaments they’d made themselves from such unlikely materials as marshmallows, toothpicks and pine cones coated with birdseed for local wildlife to enjoy.

In the waning evening light, the pack quieted long enough for a short blessing in the glow of the electric candles; then the dens took turns hanging their ornaments on the tree. “Mine’s the highest one,” proclaimed Andrew, 6, after he’d reached as far as his arms could stretch to attach his pine cone to an evergreen bough. Santa Claus circulated through the crowd, distributing candy canes to Scouts and their siblings alike.

Once the ornaments had been hung, the switch was hit and the lights flashed on, to the delight of the crowd. That was the cue to launch into some Christmas carols, ranging from “Jingle Bell Rock” to “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” led by David Verdolino on the mandolin and his brother Paul Verdolino on the Hawaiian guitar. After the ceremony, participants enjoyed an array of cookies and other refreshments, provided by local merchants as well as by Scout families.


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