Funds needed to keep Lynn Mtn. Christmas greeting lighted

By Rozella Hardin
STAR STAFF
rhardin@starhq.com

  Employees of the Elizabethton Electric System, who serve as caretakers of the Merry Christmas greeting atop Lynn Mountain, are asking for an early Christmas present from the community this year -- a little cash for the light fund.
  "We only have about $36 in the kitty at the current time," said Danny Elliott, one of several people who take care of the lighted greeting. Elliott said about 250 lights are used for the tree display and another 250 for the Merry Christmas greeting. "Cline-Holder, a local business, gets the lights for us at cost. This year, we are getting a special deal -- about 85 cents per bulb," Elliott said.
  Pat Trivette, EES employee, who serves as treasurer of the fund, said the bulbs usually run around $1.80 to $2 each. "The men volunteer to go on their own time and maintain the greeting," Trivette said.
  Elliott said the Electric System employees took over the greeting about 15 years ago from the Elizabethton Police Department. "Initially, it was their project," said Elliott, whose father, the late Henry Elliott, a city policeman, helped with the project. "It was special to my dad, and it's special to me," he explained of the greeting.
  The lighted greeting serves as the community's Christmas card and can be seen from several miles away. The greeting is lighted at the time the Fraser fir is lit and remains on until after the holidays. "There's not another greeting like it," said Elliott, noting it had become a tradition in Elizabethton.
  "We're glad to do it, and it's our way of doing something for the community," Elliott said.
  Persons or businesses who would like to donate toward the purchase and upkeep of the lights may mail their donation to Lynn Mountain Christmas Lights, c/o Elizabethton Electric System, P.O. Box 790, Elizabethton, TN 37643.