A holiday season tradition that brings hundreds of people to one local city is on hold for the year.
The view down Mayfield's First Church of the Nazarene in the first weekend of December is usually a little more solemn and shaded. For the last ten years, the church has turned the back area into the town of Bethlehem grabbing visitors from as far as neighboring states.
The town is always set-up on Mayfield Water and Electric System's right of way. Pastor Steve Melvin says earlier this year the company needed to clear the area for a new power line that connects to Jackson Purchase Medical Center. The new power line is meant to help keep the power on during an emergency like an ice-storm.
“Now that this has been done we think it’s going to take the special effects from it,” Melvin said.
Before, the tree branches hung over giving you a canopy-like feel as your walking down but now with those trees cut down plus tree’s on the other side and in front cleared the pastor says it takes away that intimate feeling. That's why the church is cancelling the event until next year.
“We would have to locate all of our stations and we don't have the man power right now or the time with the weather catching up because we have a lot of things that have to be rebuilt now,” Melvin said.
Mayor Teresa Rochetti-Cantrell sees the positives to it.
“What we think looks like the devastation of Bethlehem this is just going to really stimulate us to get busy next year and do some of the things that we have been putting off anyway,” Rochetti-Cantrell said.
The pastor plans on putting the new entrance going into the woods to help make it even more realistic than it was before.
“It’s just a really cool religious experience. You feel like you're transported there. It really does,” Rochetti-Cantrell said.
To make an experience that can take you to the heart of the holidays.
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