Editorial: It makes a village

All four Mount Desert Island towns have now held their annual community holiday celebrations with music, food, crafts and at least one chance for youngsters to spend a few minutes with Santa Claus. And this past weekend saw two different holiday “bazaar” events geared toward helping children choose gifts for family members.

Little faces are bright with excitement as they watch the approach of the boat, fire truck or other conveyance carrying the man of the hour. Older kids and teens join the adults volunteering to make it all happen: serving hot chocolate, decorating cookies, wrapping gifts and doing the dishes.

Do we hold these events year after year because our towns are the sort of places where people like to gather, or does the work to hold these events make our towns the connected, caring places they are? Either way, it’s not only the children who benefit from the care of the village.

It’s a virtuous cycle: each effort to make special community events and experiences makes the village a place people want to be. Local businesses benefit, and they in turn are able to offer support to school and other community efforts.

Thanks to everyone who helped bring Santa to town. The weeks before Christmas always feature packed schedules, but these community celebrations are well worth the effort.

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