interspersed among the tallest trees in the shopping park. But Mother
Nature intervened, and workers were forced to stop putting up the
"Some of it is just utterly destroyed," board member John Drayman
said. "What two days of 75-mph winds didn't destroy, two days of rain
Board members expect the decorations to be complete by Saturday,
when the Montrose Christmas Parade will roll through town.
The delay is the latest snag in the Christmas decorations. Rumors
circulated among merchants that the association wasn't decorating at
all. Other grumbles focus on the fact decorations are sparser than
usual because the association slashed the budget from $40,000 to
$29,000. Organizers salvaged what they could of decorations used in
It's a rebuilding year, and by cutting costs the association could
end up with a budget surplus next year, group leaders said.
But it seemed like no one is 100% satisfied with the results.
"I like the concept, but I'd like to see more," said Treasurer
Linda Strack, who oversaw the decorations. "I'd like to see lights in
all the hedges."
Drayman said he has been hearing more questions than complaints.
"I think the merchants get it," he added. "Would we all like to
see every tree lit? You bet. The bottom line is that next year we
will be able to do this again because we will have a small reserve."
Wreaths adorn gas lamps, and frames shaped like Christmas trees,
wreaths, lollipops and reindeer are scattered among the lighted
"It looks like we put up the obligatory lights for Christmas,"
Play It Again Sports owner Dick Jover said. "It's pretty pathetic.
This is the big season for the retailers up here and it needs to be a
Other merchants are compensating by pouring greater efforts into
their own decorations.
"By the time the next couple of weeks have gone by, I think that
the combination of what's on the outside and what's in the windows
will be wonderful," Tender Treasures owner Gerry Puhara said.