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COMMENTARY: The Gifts of the Christmas Star


by Brenda Thow

Many years ago Waterbury had a Christmas star on the mountain at the end of Winooski Street. It was a steep hike to get to it but worth the effort because the view was beautiful. The star could be seen from the interstate and most places in town.

Every December, a man from Green Mountain Power would snowshoe up to the star to replace any non-working bulbs, turn on the electric meter, and cut any brush that had grown too high. Sometime in January, he would snowshoe back up to turn the meter off, and the star would be gone until the next December.

At that time I was in my early twenties, single, and living on Winooski Street. This was a time when few girls moved several hundred miles from home to live by themselves. It proved to be a very special time in my life—a time for which I am very grateful. It was a blessing that words can’t describe.

The star was an important part of my life. At night I would watch TV in the dark while looking at the star, which was framed by one of my windows. It gave me a feeling of peace, and I knew that I was safe and protected. As I went to bed, I knew “all was well.”

That was 50 years ago, and I still have that feeling of peace each Christmas when I reminisce about Waterbury’s star.

And the man from Green Mountain Power? We have been married for 38 years and “all is well.”

Merry Christmas!