I read that Wallace was having their Yuletide celebrations this weekend. I have to admit that I got a little nostalgic reading about it. When I was growing up there, there wasn't a real lighting ceremony yet, the Depot was still used for trains, and Black Friday was not a media frenzy event. No, we celebrated Thanksgiving as an individual event, and Christmas season began the next night.
But, I really looked forward to the night after Thanksgiving because the stores, and yes, Wallace really did have a lot of stores in those days, stayed open until 11 PM! The Congregational Church piped out Christmas carols and the stores had all put their decorations up that day. (No, they were not out two months ahead of time like the stores here do now.)
The night after Thanksgiving, my friend and I would bundle up in winter coats, boots, and gloves, and we would go downtown. Every store had to be visited, and the smell of Christmas was all over town. The clerks were all smiling, the streets were usually glistening in the early snows, and there was a genuine feeling of community and yes, even a feeling of peace.
We would walk the town, and maybe spend a dollar or two, and then walk all the way back to my house on Cedar, where my mother would give us hot cocoa and cookies. Ah, the end to a perfect night.