Registration under way for home decorating contest in Pottsville
News from Republican & Herald:

City residents can now enter their decorated homes into the third holiday home decorating contest.

Applications are available at five locations in Pottsville and are due by 4 p.m. Dec. 7.

“The following week will be the judging,” Mary Quirk, Pottsville Recreation Commission director, said.

Judging is scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. Dec. 11 to 13. The number of entries will determine how many days the judging will take place.

Similar to last year’s contest, the houses will be judged in three categories – past, present and future. The winner of each category receives $ 100. The past category features decorations such as live garland, window candles and wreaths. Lights and color are hallmarks of the present category. Animated and inflatable decorations make up the future category.

Those who register will receive a green ornamental Christmas ball with the words “Pottsville 2012 Merry Christmas,” Quirk said. They also receive a note thanking them for entering the contest.

The contest is a way to celebrate the city, Quirk said.

“Everybody goes to different extremes or not,” to showcase the pride in decorating their homes, she said.

Last year, 24 homes registered for the contest. About 30 homes participated in the first event held in 2009, she said. The event was not held in 2010 due to budget constraints.

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House Decorated! A Dream Come True
News from Hartford Courant:

My Christmas wish has been the same for the past couple of decades or so.

If only I could walk past my matted, artificial Christmas tree and the 22 bins and boxes of tangled garland, lights, ribbon and such, go to work but some how come home to find a wonderland of lights, shimmer, greenery and joy created using all my stuff.

This year, my wish came true, thanks to master floral designer Ruth Loiseau and interior decorator Bruce Valicenti.

The two business owners have combined their talents into a new seasonal venture that offers homeowners a way to get out from under their own Jingle Bells jungle of junk. They do the decorating, and you just enjoy the festive transformation.

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“We see the possibilities,” said Valicenti, who owns BFV Design LLC in Suffield, abou…………… continues on Hartford Courant

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