In Hague, our Christmas celebrations are a tad unusual. We kick off the season with a dog parade the first weekend of December, with prizes awarded for the best-dressed dog. The canines and their owners promenade up the only road in town, arriving at the Community Center, where Santa is on hand to hand out presents to the dogs – oh, yes, and to any children who might be around. But since this is becoming more and more of a retirement community, there aren’t that many wee ones in town anymore.
Working together to protect Lake George
The water of Lake George is rated as drinking water quality, which is no small feat for a lake of this size and with such heavy usage. The water remains clean and clear for several reasons. We have no industry or commercial agriculture on the shores, and the many springs on the lake’s bottom constantly feed it with clean water. Lake George is also unique in that it has its own state regulatory body, the Lake George Park Commission (LGPC), created in 1988 to protect the lake and safeguard the people who use it.
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Lessons from Santa and St. Nikolaus
Back in the 1980s, when I was living in Munich with my German husband, our two young sons would start asking around the end of November each year if we were going to celebrate Christmas the American way or German-style that year. With a very American mother (where tradition is concerned) and a German dad, they experienced the traditions of both countries.
Most years, we took a vote. I always feared that “German-style” would win since it offers the obvious advantage of allowing them to open all their presents on Christmas Eve rather than having to wait until the next morning. I felt the need each year to hold a lengthy oratory about the excitement of hanging the stockings by the chimney with care, setting out cookies and milk for Santa, listening all night for the prancing and pawing of reindeer hoofs and creeping down the stairs while the house was still dark to get a peek at Santa.
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