Mayor’s Message: Events from Halloween to Christmas

Mayor Louis Manzo

Gov. Murphy released the guidelines for Halloween trick or treating last week, therefore, we will be publishing our local parameters shortly now that Trenton’s bumpers are in place. Halloween falls on a Saturday this year and we will provide these details and best practices through all our communication channels including to the school districts. But, no tricks, Halloween will happen!

Events are a big deal in our community and this pandemic has already forced the cancellation of numerous signature occasions this year. However, The Fall Open House Civil War Living History event on Main Street took place over this past weekend and was well received. This is a merchant-sponsored event, and the widespread format made the social distancing protocols easier, as food and music filled the street along with the reenactment activities.

The timing seems appropriate to provide you with some insight on our thoughts about the community’s premier event, Lights on Main. We all love this Thanksgiving Saturday event that is universally known as the best event in the county. That said, it should come as no surprise that shutting down Main Street and holding an event that will draw close to 10,000 people is not a possibility under the current COVID-19 cloud and restrictions. For that reason, Thanksgiving weekend 2020, in Mullica Hill, will not include our traditional Tree lighting moment at 7 p.m. on Saturday night. Besides that, the tree has been lit since mid-March anyway, lol! That message will be conveyed outside our borders to ensure the masses that come from out of town every year don’t show up that night.

However, the virus does not limit our ability as a community to transform our Main Street into a Christmas Village worthy of a Norman Rockwell painting that weekend, like we always do. It cannot prevent individual business owners from hosting mini-events at their location or the township from sponsoring specific destinations on the street for your viewing and picture-taking pleasure. And COVID-19 definitely cannot stop our residents from strolling down that beautiful street with your family and take it all in, visually. All of that can happen while observing the necessary protocols.

Since mid-summer, our team has been grappling with exactly “how” we can create a program or backdrop, without staging a township-wide event, that can produce the same joyous feelings. I am excited to tell you that we believe we’ve come up with a wonderful concept, which we will call Miracle on Main. It will be a weekend-long program, starting Friday evening of Thanksgiving weekend and run through Sunday night. The street will be transformed with all the traditional visual effects, including our famous tree, but there will be some additional lighting and other items to further enhance the experience.

We are collaborating with our Main Street business owners, to give you a safe and healthy version of this cherished hometown tradition. Stay tuned for the details of our plan so you can be part of our Miracle on Main!