Holiday Spirit Will Still Sparkle in Easton

With the fall season coming to an end next month, Easton residents are now looking forward to celebrating the holiday season while still abiding by the Covid-19 safety protocols. 

In the spirit of the holidays, the Easton Police Department will be giving back to their community beyond law enforcement and emergency response. They will raise funds for several organizations this season. The department is participating in a new event they are calling “No Shave November” to raise money for the Connecticut Cancer Foundation. According to dispatcher Tara Candee, pandemic safety protocols will be prioritized throughout this new fundraising initiative.

 “Though we are not able to have our officers grow beards right now, we will be wearing masks to show our support and raise awareness for the Connecticut Cancer Foundation’s mission,” said Candee. “It provides assistance to Connecticut cancer patients in support of their basic needs.”

K-9 TJ guards Toys for Tots donation boxes at the Easton Police Department.

The department has been participating in a Toys for Tots drive for the past four years and will continue the tradition this year on Dec. 5 despite Covid-19. The important change is that it will be held as a drivethrough event for safety seasons. 

“There are several drop boxes in our lobby, and all toy and book donations must be new and unwrapped,” Candee said. “We will also be hosting a Stuff-a-Cruiser event on Saturday, Dec. 5 from 8 a.m. to noon in the Easton Library parking lot, 691 Morehouse Road, Easton. We hope to make this year the best yet!”

The Easton Fire Department plans to do some fundraising this holiday season by collecting toys for the Al’s Angels Toy Drive for children with cancer, according to Chief Steven Waugh. More details will follow.

Unfortunately, the Easton Public Library’s beloved Christmas tree lighting and vendor fair won’t take place this year due to the pandemic. However, the library will host a number of virtual events, according to library director Lynn Zaffino. The library is holding a Trivia Night for adults and a holiday crafts activity for children to help keep the community in the holiday spirit.

Lynn Zaffino, Easton Public Library director, gets in the holiday spirit.

Trivia Night for the adults is a new event this year, and it will take place virtually on Zoom on Dec. 4 at 7:30 p.m. The Giving Tree event at the library has been a holiday tradition for at least 10 years and will be taking place again this year.

For the children, there will be holiday crafts on Facebook live on Dec. 1, according to Zaffino and MaryBeth Rassulo, head of youth services at the library.

“There will be an arts and crafts project on Facebook live and on the YouTube channel with different posts of the items that they’ll need at home or even from outside to start their crafts,” said Rassulo. 

Easton’s local churches are also preparing for the holidays as best they can even as Covid-19 continues to force the cancelation of the majority of their annual events.

The Rev. Amanda Ostrove, pastor of the Congregational Church of Easton, confirmed that the annual Harvest Dinner for the month of November was canceled due to Covid-19, as well as the community carol and Christmas pageant. Despite these cancellations, the church is still offering services to the community and will hold a cookie sale instead of its annual cookie walks.

Congregational Church of Easton annual cookie walk changed to cookie bake sale.

“We are planning on offering a Christmas Eve worship service at 5:30 p.m., in person, in our church sanctuary,” Ostrove said. “Because of Covid-19, there will be a limit on attendance, so we ask for RSVPs to our church office. We’re also having our annual Holiday Cookie Sale on Dec 12 from 9 a.m. to noon. We are asking people to pre-order this year.”

Christ Church Easton will not have its traditional tree lighting, bonfire and carol sing due to Covid-19. The church is still having the annual Christmas Eve service, but it will be virtual, according to Tracy Carlucci, the church organist and an active member. 

“Our Christmas Eve service always includes a Christmas pageant by the kids, and this year’s service will be held on Zoom,” said Carlucci.  “I’m planning on involving some of our choir members and instrumentalists, but am still working out the technical details.”

Although Covid-19 is still very much with us, the Easton community continues to work tirelessly to give fellow residents a special holiday experience during what continues to be a very difficult year.

For more information about these events and fundraising initiatives, please visit the Easton Police Department’s Facebook page the Easton Public Library’s website, the Easton Volunteer Fire Department’s Facebook page, the Congregational Church of Easton’s website, and the Christ Church Easton Facebook page.