Getting swept up in holiday spirit; Local events hosted for community

Noel Bailey, Reporter

December is a month full of things to do. The Jarrettsville Train Garden and the Tractor Parade are two local traditions that draw crowds over the holiday season.   The Train Garden, located at Jarrettsville Fire House,  is open every weekend in December and the Tractor Parade took place on December 7.

   Two students from North Harford were actively involved in the parade. Senior Bev Bigelau is the student who got the tractor that represented the FFA. This is her second year helping with the parade. This is the first year that the FFA had a tractor. “We had a lot of fun meeting new people so we decided this year to have a tractor actually in the parade,” Bigelau says. 

     The tractor that’s being used is from Joan and Gary Miller “from the Miller’s Farm Market” says Bigelau. Gary Miller will be the one driving it through the parade. The tractor that’s being used is a “new Holland,” says Bigelau. 

     North Harford has sophomore Mia Coleman being in charge of decorating for the FFA. The tractor will be pulling a wagon through the parade “We are decorating a wagon for the officers and some members to be on” Coleman says. The wagon and tractor were decorated, she put “garland/tinsel around the wagon in silver, red, and gold,”  says Coleman. This is not Coleman’s first year helping out but this is her first year “as an officer/organizing it” she says. 

     The decorations were representing North Harford High School and the FFA by putting “FFA in blue and gold tinsel,” Coleman says. They also put “a pig decoration, 2 cows that we decorated and a horse,” Coleman says. There was also a cow statue that was put in the middle of their wagon that was decorated with bows and garland. 

     The community is also helped out to decorate the wagon and the tractor. “Other officers are also working on it and some freshmen are helping,” says Coleman, as well upperclassmen. 

     The train garden at the Jarrettsville firehouse is now open and is open till January 8-9. It will only be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas. After Christmas, the 26-31they are open every night. This is the 40 anniversary of the garden. 

     The train garden is set up all year, “the room is dedicated to the train garden,” says Chief John Simpson. He is the person who is in charge of the whole train garden set up and the event. The garden has different layouts, 5 in total having one of them “up on the wall.” 

     Each different layout has “at least two main lines running trains, plus some others” Simpson. There are push buttons all around the garden at different layouts that the visitors can come up and push to have something happen in the train garden. 

    The train garden was started by “me and my father’s collection” says Simpson. He started to get trains for Christmas when he was little and has collected them ever since. The train garden gets donations now of different trains to run in the event now. 

     Last year was the first year to have the garden closed ever due to covid and now they are back at it this year trying to bring in as many people as usual to see all of the trains. While the tractor parade brought in a crowd with the FFA helping out and representing them and North Harford high school.