Photo by Letitia E. Minnick
Since 1994, there has been a holiday decorating ceremony that receives little, if any, attention in comparison to the Lights in the Parkway display. This holiday lighting ceremony is done by volunteers and takes place through the initiative of the East Allentown/Rittersville Neighborhood Association (EARN). The idea was conceived by Kenneth W. Haas, who was an active member and guiding spirit of EARN before his death.
Each year since 1994, dedicated volunteers contribute their personal time and EARN funds to provide the local community with a holiday display of their very own. Families and individuals from the East Side, and all over Allentown, are invited to take a drive by the pool area of Irving Park to enjoy the glittering lights and holiday decorations.
The members of EARN see this service to the community as a holiday token of their appreciation for their neighbors and neighborhood. Committed to enhancing the common good through community service, EARN urges members of Allentown's East Side to join with them in creating, preserving, and maintaining a strong community commitment through service to the local neighborhood.
Dennis Pearson, Mike D'Amore, Mayor Ed Pawlowski, and Bob Jacoby
Since the death of Kenneth Haas, the decorations and lighting at Irving Park have been spearheaded every year by EARN members Dennis Pearson and Bob Jacoby. In tribute to their friend and fellow member, EARN has titled the event, The Project Haas Christmas Display. This year, Mayor Ed Pawlowski and City Council President Mike D'Amore were in attendance for the lighting ceremony.
Between now and the New Year, when you and your family and friends are out taking in the awe and wonder of the Christmas decorations and displays throughout the city, don't forget to take a drive by Irving Park and check out the Project Haas Christmas Display. It's free, and Ken Haas did it for you, for Christmas, for his friends, his neighbors, and his neighborhood.
So, allow me to wish you a very Merry Christmas and add a hope that all of you have a neighbor and a friend as generous and thoughtful as Ken Haas in your lives.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,