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City of LaGrange employees decorate for the holiday season

City employees hung ornaments, munched on Christmas cookies and decorated the city hall tree on Monday morning during a special event to get the season started.

This year, LaGrange City Hall’s decorations include wishing trees, ornaments from city departments and a festive array of wreaths, bows and garlands. City of LaGrange Marketing and Communication Manager Katie Van Schoor said that the ornaments from city employees were one of her favorite parts of the decorating event.

“It is personal, and they are proud to be working for the City of LaGrange,” Van Schoor said. “When people join us with the City of LaGrange, they usually stay for a while. We are a family, a city family. We are starting the holiday season with our work family, and then we are opening it up to our community family.”

Monday’s event was just the beginning because next week the city plans to share the results of those decorating efforts with the public during a free family friendly event. The LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce and the City of LaGrange will host LaGrange City Hall After Hours at 200 Ridley Ave. on Dec. 12 at 5 p.m.

“We want everybody to come out and celebrate the holiday spirit no matter what they celebrate,” Van Schoor said. “This is open to everybody to just enjoy the holidays, have fun — especially this week we have the Christmas parade. Two weeks ago, we had our Hands Helping Hands, Light Up LaGrange parade.”

City After Hours event will feature carolers, holiday treats and a visit from Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

“The LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce is thrilled to be partnering with the City of LaGrange for Business After Hours next week,” said Leslie Traylor, director of member engagement for the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce. “It’s a wonderful time for the public to see city hall. Because this event is open to the public, we encourage everyone to come out.”

Van Schoor said that the city is thrilled to invite citizens into city hall to celebrate.

“We just wanted to do something special for our community as we celebrate holidays,” Van Schoor said. “We wanted to include the community. This is not just our city hall. This is everybody’s city hall.”

Van Schoor said the event will also include the chance for attendees to attach wishes to the two wishing trees outside city hall and make their Christmas wish on video in the LGTV studio, which is located on the third floor of LaGrange City Hall.

The idea for the wishing trees came from City Manager Meg Kelsey’s trip to Korea, where she saw people tying wishes to special trees. Kelsey said that when she returned to LaGrange, she decided that she wanted to see something similar, and a LaGrange crew made it happen. Anyone who wants to attach a wish to the wishing trees can do so regardless of time since they are outdoors.