By Charlene Dean
Just as the Thanksgiving holiday is over and the Black Friday scramble fades, Pahrump residents will have another set of festivities starting next weekend, to help immerse them in the joy of the Christmas holidays.
Last year, KNYE-Radio owner Karen Jackson started what is fast becoming a tradition in Pahrump with her successful efforts to provide a community Christmas tree.
The event garnered the support of businesses, which built Christmas scenes to place at the base of the tree, and residents had a day set aside to add their own personal touches to the decorations.
When the tree was lighted, and in spite of windy conditions, Jackson said about 300 people were there listening to carolers, eating cookies and brownies and drinking coffee or hot cocoa.
Well, plans are already in motion for a repeat performance. Jackson said her “Secret Santa” has already purchased a 45-foot giant from JFP Christmas Trees in Grants Pass, Ore.
Jackson said she had to change her Secret Santa this year. The community Christmas tree project came with a $3,800 price tag.
The tree has already been harvested and was air-lifted to a holding yard awaiting shipment to Long Beach, Calif.
Jackson said the tree will arrive Monday, Nov. 26 and be delivered directly to the property at Saddle West. A permanent sleeve and concrete pad were installed by Morales Construction last year in the space between the south end of Saddle West’s parking lot and Beverly Plaza.
Wulfenstein Construction has offered to pick up the tree in Long Beach and will be enroute right after Thanksgiving.
Last year, the tree had an escort as it arrived in Nye County on Highway 372. Jackson said she will be announcing its arrival from her live broadcast on Monday.
She said, “I’ll get location information from Gary Hollis telling me where they are.” She said Hollis will be in the truck with Wulfenstein’s driver and calling her periodically.
She said both NCSO and Nye County Emergency Services will provide escort.
Once the tree is secured in the stand at Saddle West, Jackson said Valley Electric Association will use the bucket truck to string the lights on the 14-foot-in-diameter giant, and hang the huge ornaments. Jackson said, “I want to thank Frazier Furniture for storing the decorations for us.”
Last year, residents donated a “truckload” of lights and ornaments which had to be replaced with fire-safe, energy-efficient LED lighting. Valley Electric will furnish the power for the tree as a donation to the community.
Jackson has set Saturday, Dec. 1 as “Community Decorating Day,” which will begin at 10 a.m. “Everyone is invited to add their decorations,” Jackson said. “It’s a community experience and everyone can take part and enjoy it.”
Businesses should deliver their scenes next Saturday as well. Jackson said six scenes are due to be set around the tree. “We have room for many more, too.”
Residents will only have the one day to add decorations. The tree will be lighted at 6 p.m. that evening.
Jackson has been running the essay contest to select an elementary school child to help throw the switch. The deadline for entries will be Nov. 28.
Contestants can submit their essay stating why they should be chosen to help light the tree to KNYE-Radio, 2011 Dutch Ford Road, Pahrump, NV 89048.
Festivities at the gathering of the community will also include the songs of Christmas from the Pahrump Children’s Choir under the direction of Rodney Camacho. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be there as well.
Jackson is going to be a very busy lady on Dec. 1, as she’s launched yet another community project to bring unity to Pahrump residents.
Beginning at 9 a.m. next Saturday morning, Jackson will begin the process of a car giveaway at Pahrump Valley Auto Plaza.
You’ve heard about this type of contest before, where those registered will put a hand on the car and the last person with their hand still on the car wins it.
Jackson said she purchased the white 2004 Saturn L300 from PV Auto Plaza. “I got a really good deal and the car is in great shape,” Jackson said.
“Dealership manager Sheldon Feddy said the vehicle is “front-line ready to retail.”
“We did a 14-point inspection on the vehicle. It only has 52,000 and change miles on it.”
He said it needed new tires, which the dealership handled, and it’s had an oil change.
The rules are:
• You must be 21 to register and registration with a photo ID is mandatory;
• You must stand unless you are disabled;
• Once your hand is on the car, you cannot switch hands.
The event details are still being discussed. The original plans were to hold the event in the dealership showroom. Bathroom breaks would be done in rotation every two or three hours, and when the dealership closes at 9 p.m., everyone gets to go home and sleep.
However the rules change, the winner will still get a car which is valued at $9,999. They will be responsible for taxes and license.
Jackson said she is still looking for judges to be sure no one cheats and she needs several. Call her at 537-6100.
There is more. Pahrump Valley Auto Plaza will be hosting the Lions Club’s annual “Breakfast with Santa” from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Dec. 1 as well.
Bring the kids, and their letters to Santa, for pancakes, sausage, and milk, juice or coffee. The breakfast is free to children 12 and under. All others will pay $4.