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New Grounds is best lit community for the 5th year

New Grounds is best lit community for the 5th year

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Jason Villaroel, head of the New Grounds Lighting Committee, is asking the corporate community why is there such a reluctance to sponsor the New Grounds lighting programme.{{more}}

“Is is because we are a rural community?” Villaroel asked SEARCHLIGHT on Monday evening.

While it’s a sweet victory for the community of New Grounds, having been crowned this year’s champions of the VINLEC Christmas Lighting Competition for the third consecutive year, to some extent, failed promises by companies to provide sponsorship is a bitter pill for members of the New Grounds Lighting Committee.

New Grounds has claimed the coveted Best Lit Village title in 2010, 2009, 2008, as well as 2006 and 2004, by lighting and decorating the compound of the New Grounds Primary School.

Villaroel said to successfully stage the lighting programme, the organization has to find approximately $8,000 each year to purchase new lights. He noted that the cost of lights could have been more expensive, but the new lights are always complemented by old ones.

He said adding to the challenges of raising funds on their own, the New Grounds Lighting Committee, this year, also had to deal with General Elections, schools closing late and consistent heavy rains.

Amidst their scarce financial resources, Villaroel said: “For us it’s not really about money. It’s about putting on the lights for people to see the creativity.”

Villaroel said the organizing committee would be grateful if a corporate entity could sponsor the programme.

“It’s hard to see a community which is one of the leading communities in Christmas lighting, it seems like sponsors don’t want to be a part of it,” said Villaroel. He said the New Grounds Lighting Committee is a non-profit organization, which uses part of its winnings to give to the New Grounds Primary School and to purchase gifts for children. He used the opportunity to praise the members of the New Grounds Lighting Committee and all who assisted in making the programme a success.

This year’s lighting programme included attractions such table games. Villaroel said the committee is pleased with the large turnout of families who enjoyed the various forms of entertainment.

On the victory, Villaroel said it means a lot to the people of New Grounds.

“You hear them speaking about it and the way they embrace whenever we win. It’s a good thing for the community on a whole. It even puts the community on the map,” said Villaroel, noting that people who did not know where New Grounds now know about it.

The New Grounds 2010 lighting programme was done under the theme “Wonderland”. The lights featured designs of houses and animals as well as other attractions.

When quizzed about his committee’s plans for next year, Villaroel said: “That’s one thing we don’t talk about.We keep that secret.We’re not entitled to brag and boast.Whatever plans we come with we sit and we discuss them. We just execute.”

The Best Nine Mornings Community this year went to Carierre, while the Best Lit Garden went to the Richmond Hill Gardens. Arnos Vale Gardens placed second.(HN)

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