LAURINBURG — On a steamy, hot Friday morning in downtown Laurinburg, it … snowed.
Most folks probably missed it, since the 2-foot high mound covered only about a 4-foot by 4-foot square right outside McNair Town & Country. For those who did see it, the sight sparked smiles and applause.
The “snow” was actually bubbles created from a mix of isopropyl alcohol and water, blown from a snow-making machine that was being tested by the ‘Tis the Season group, which hopes to order 13 more of the machines soon.
“We still have some adjustments to make,” said Terry Parker, director of the planned holiday season event for downtown Laurinburg, “like getting the ‘snow’ size smaller.”
‘Tis the Season’s plan is to use the 14 snow-makers during the five-weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s during the myriad of events organizers have planned.
“These machines will be placed on rooftops or high on posts along Main Street between Church and Railroad streets to create a nice snowfall,” said Lynda Huntley, chairman of the snow committee. “We plan to turn that area into a magical, snowy place.”
The machines are expected to be shown during both the Highland Games and the John Blue Festival.
But the snow machines are just one of many undertakings the group has tackled since beginning the process back in January.
“We’re like the little mouse that roared,” Parker said. “I think people thought we were crazy when we first started, but it’s really taken off — and now we have hundreds of volunteers.”
Like the 12 days of Christmas, ‘Tis the Season has 12 committees, each one focusing on a different event for the holidays. Included are an effort to bring 50 live, 6-foot Christmas trees that will line the downtown area, bringing a 22-foot Christmas tree to the art park for a special lighting, creating a 30-by-60-foot ice-skating rink, honoring local veterans with a Skype program, having live music featuring Laurinburg native Jim Quick with his Coastline band, showing videotaped Christmas stories by local folks on the back of the A.B. Gibson Building (with teases to that on the Jumbo-tron during Scotland football games), decorating the downtown area and business storefronts as well as creating a singing Christmas tree.
“Our community needs this,” Parker said. “And we plan to keep it alive by making it bigger and better every year. We just want to bring people together and get them downtown.”
“We hope to make Laurinburg a destination with this event,” added Huntley.
Anyone wanting to volunteer or make a tax-deductible donation can contact the group on Facebook at ‘Tis the Season, or call 910-280-1874, 910-280-5373 or 910-280-3710.
W. Curt Vincent can be reached at 910-506-3023 or [email protected]