Holidays stay around at the road department

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:45

    SPARTA-The crew over at the Sparta Department of Public works never lose the Christmas spirit. They can't, they're surrounded by it. With the exception of the weeks between Thanksgiving and the New Year, the Christmas decorations adorn their workplace all year long. According to an employee at the department, the decorations that make Sparta look so festive during the Christmas season are stored each year in their building. Years ago the collection of decorations was stored in the town hall's attic. This is no longer an option due to safety issues concerning the attic's floor. "Oh yes, the large wreaths are stored on big dowels in the building and are visible. Storage is a problem because it all takes up so much space," said Miriam Tower, the Sparta's municipal clerk. "I would imagine it gets crowded in there during this time of the year with truck maintenance and repairs, with all the storage needs." Both the Department of Public Works and the Parks Department share in the responsibility of getting the town ready for Christmas by decorating the Main Street lampposts, the trees in the theatre plaza, and the large tree on the library property. "Prior to the lampposts being installed on Main Street, the wreaths were hung on electric poles along the road. Those wreaths were much larger and we needed even more (space) for all the polls, so storage was an issue then too. When those wreaths became too old and faded and the new lampposts were installed, we got new wreaths. The new wreaths were actually smaller and we didn't need as many," Tower stated. However, soon the walls of the Department of Public Works building will be busting with additional décor as the town prepares the next phase of the streetscape project, which will go into effect this coming spring and summer. An additional 30 to 40 lampposts will be installed on Sparta Avenue, which means the same number of additional wreaths needing storage. "We're looking into the possibility of purchasing a separate storage container, providing it is cost efficient, for the holiday decorations," said Tower.