Mint Hill 2020 Highlights
Published in the Mint Hill Times
December 31, 2020
The Mint Hill Times has asked me to highlight what I thought the best things the town did to bring the community together in 2020. People are staying home more. Our circle of family and friends has become smaller. Gathering, congregating, get-together, assembly are not wording we have used this year.
The pandemic has forced us to communicate virtually. We are spending more time on FaceTime, Zoom, Teams, Google hang outs to connect with people. Personally, I have learned a lot about technology this year. It amazes me how much more fluent in technology my grandkids are. While I am not out in the community on a regular basis, I am talking to people daily via email and phone. I have been communicating regularly with you via my Mayor Messages. All our public meetings have been hosted virtually.
We tried to reschedule most of our events for later in the year. But about the time May hit, we realized we were going to have to rethink how we did events. It was a long summer and going into the fall, staff decided we needed to up our game. In lieu of the Fall Harvest Festival, we did a Scarecrow Decorating contest. We had over 65 entries. Even after the registration closed, we had people putting up scarecrows. It was great to see people getting out of their houses while maintaining social distancing.
For the past 20 years we have honored our veterans with our Veterans Breakfast at Philadelphia Church. This is a group we did not want to forget as they have done so much for our country. Because they are among the most vulnerable group, we had to reinvent the event. In the end, we did a drive-through event for them at the Mint Hill Veterans Memorial Park. It was not the same as the breakfast, but we were able to personally thank almost 100 veterans.
Fast forward to December. Our most cherished event, the Mint Hill Christmas Tree Lighting and Parade. There was no way we could have everyone gather at Town Hall to light the tree. Town staff talked about several alternatives and landed on the Mint Hill Virtual Tree Lighting. A video was created with Santa repelling from the building and climbing to the top of the tree on a firetruck to light it with his magic wand. Santa continues to host weekly messages to all the boys and girls of Mint Hill. All done with our number one priority, the safety of the community.
The governor issued a statewide Stay at Home curfew through January 8, 2021. Residents are asked to stay in their homes between the hours of 10:00 pm and 5:00 am. For me, that will not be hard because I am usually asleep at that time. I ask you to remember those businesses who are struggling because of this new rule. You may not go out that late on a regular basis, but order take out. Your dinner may help a little girl continue with her dance lessons or a little boy achieve his dream of playing baseball. Every little bit helps.
2020 has not been the year we were expecting when the ball dropped. We all have something for which we are thankful. Let us focus on that.
I wish each of you a Happy New Year!
Mayor Brad Simmons