Havre Daily News staff
Volunteers from the Hill County Retired Senior Volunteer Program and members of the American Legion Auxiliary and Juniors were busy making ornamental stars last week to be used on the Capitol Christmas tree. "Montana was asked to provide the 2008 Capitol Christmas Tree, which will be displayed in Washington, D.C. ,during the Christmas season," said Alison Hecker, director for RSVP. "The 60-foot tree will come from the Bitterroot National Forest. School classes, scouts troops, 4-H clubs, civic organization and volunteer programs throughout Montana have been asked to provide 5,000 handmade decorations for the tree." Hecker said she contacted Marlyn Damson, president of the American Legion Auxiliary about having senior volunteers and the Junior Auxiliary members team up to make decorations for the tree. Senior volunteers Mary Gillespi, Inez Damson and Lorena Rick together with Amanda Viall, Addison Kinsella, Jackie and Clarissa Martin, Brooke LaValley, Eileen Viall, Kate Kinsella and Marlyn Damson worked two afternoons to make 9-inch glittery and sequined stars, representing the Big Sky of Montana. "The stars will be sent to Hamilton where the Christmas Tree Ornament Coordinators will collect all the handmade ornaments and will ship them on to Washington, D.C.," Hecker said. "Once the tree and ornaments arrive in Washington, D.C., the Capitol landscape crew will string lights and place the handmade ornaments on the tree. The tree will be lit in early December and stay lit throughout the holiday season. "The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program is always looking for activities and projects to bring senior volunteers together with younger people," Hecker said. Anyone interested in helping with future projects can call Alison Hecker at 265-5464.