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Rick Norton reports: A popular holiday carol — written in 1951 by lyricist Meredith Wilson — says a little something about, “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.”
In the heart of the songstress, her inspiration might have come from a few inches of snow, from bright lights dangling off neighborhood roofs or maybe even from the twinkle of silver tinsel or the unblinking excitement of little eyes.
Either way, 70 years later the song remains the epitome of Christmastime joy.
And here’s another constant of the Yuletide; at least, in the Cleveland and Bradley County community. One of the area’s most endearing holiday drives — the Empty Stocking Fund — kicks off Monday for the first of its traditional “10 Days of Giving.”
For Steve Hartline, owner of WCLE Mix 104.1 whose grandfather — the Rev. M.E. Littlefield, founder of Faith Memorial Church — gave vision to the original Cleveland Christmas Party for Children, it will come as a special moment.
In last year’s drive — riddled with the safety protocol and uncertainties surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic — Hartline worked from the sidelines at home, recovering from his own bout with the virus. But, the show went on and two weeks later the Empty Stocking Fund had raised a record $150,000.
A year later, some of the same safety protocol remains in place because of the lingering effects of COVID-19; but, the full team is together again and will work to meet its new goal for 2021: One dollar more.
That puts this year’s target at $150,001.
Unlike last year, “10 Days of Giving” will return to its traditional kickoff format from the Church of God International Offices. The Empty Stocking Fund team will launch the drive on air at 6 a.m. and continue through 9 a.m.
The next live remote will take place Friday, Dec. 3, from Garden Plaza, also from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. And then, what Empty Stocking Fund long-timers have billed “The Grand Finale,” the campaign’s last live remote will originate from Life Care Centers of America on Friday, Dec. 10, from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Tim Siniard reports: Four juveniles were filmed on security cameras vandalizing the Tinsley Park pool area, according to a Cleveland Police Department incident report.
On Tuesday, the CPD was notified of damage at the pool area by a Cleveland Parks and Recreation employee.
According to the CPD’s report, four picnic tables were found in the pool, as well as a chair and a garbage can.
The security camera’s footage revealed two males and two females, described in the report as teenagers, entering the pool area.
One of the subjects attempted to kick in the female restroom’s door, but was unsuccessful.
A male, who was wearing a black hoodie, climbed on the roof of the life guard building, while another male looked “directly at a camera before smacking it.”
No other property damage was noticed by officers.