Christmas spirit in spite of COVID-19 By Mandy McCarrick

Although the world is still undergoing shutdowns and quarantines due to COVID-19, the residents of Elmira, Ny. are continuing to display their Christmas spirit. Decorating for Christmas is just one way the people of Elmira are attempting to have normalcy over the holidays.

Residents of the town, Bobby McCarrick and Robert McCarrick are trying their best not to let their spirit die down during these times.

Railing decorated by Bobby McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

"I have had a lot more spare time to put decorations up, I put decorations and lights on our railing, as well as, wreaths around the house and on the front door," said Bobby McCarrick.

Bobby McCarrick says he has more free time because he has been attending college virtually at home, and is not really able to go to hangout with his friends or do normal activities due to COVID-19.

Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

"...There's a lot of Christmas lights, which is a good thing, because it means people still have a lot of their Christmas spirit," said Bobby McCarrick.

Just from taking drives around town, Bobby McCarrick has noticed more Christmas lights on houses and around the town of Elmira. There is even a Christmas light show at Bradley Farms, a seasonal entertainment facility located in Elmira.

Decorated by Robert McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

"Since we aren't traveling for sports or going to holiday parties, I was able to decorate more this weekend," said Robert McCarrick

Several residents that live on Durland Ave. in Elmira have put lights outside to dress up their houses for the holidays.

Wreath hung up by Bobby McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

"Even though there's seemingly more decorations and lights, I'm less excited for Christmas, normally my whole family comes into town to visit, but because of covid this year they can't," said Bobby McCarrick

The McCarrick family has adapted to not being able to see family in person during Thanksgiving, by holding a Thanksgiving dinner via zoom.

As of Dec. 14th, gyms and hair salons have been opened back up in Ny. in areas with low infection rates of COVID-19. Even though 1/4 of people normally in gyms can be in one at a time, Elmira was fortunate enough to be one of the areas opened.

Decorated by Kathy McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

Kathy McCarrick takes pride in decorating her house every winter. This year it is a little more amped up due to being home fore all of the holidays this season.

Cabinet decorated by Kathy McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

Elmira is still "very cheery, the other day the police Dept. came through our St. with Santa on the back of a truck to bring spirit to all of those who were quarantined," said Bobby McCarrick.

Since the risk of getting COVID-19 at an in-person Thanksgiving day parade was too high, the town of Elmira decided to cancel the parade and have Santa make an appearance to every St. in the town.

Tree decorated by Robert McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

"Normally, we decorate a lot because we have a Christmas party with our whole family, so we've enjoyed decorating this year we even got a bigger tree than normal since we won't be having as many people over," said Robert McCarrick.

As of Dec. 14th in Elmira, Ny. only 10 people are allowed to be in an indoor space with each other, with a strong recommendation to be 6 feet apart, and wear a mask at all times.

Mantle decorated by the McCarrick family. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

Although Christmas time this year doesn't quite feel the same as last year the McCarrick family is trying to make the most of it, says Bobby McCarrick.

This is the first COVID-19 Christmas ever, and travelers who want to come to Ny. must first complete a 14 day quarantine before arriving.

Close up of the mantle. Picture credit - Mandy McCarrick

The McCarrick family living room has garland and festoons on their mantle along side their Christmas tree.

Decorated by Kathy McCarrick. Photo credit - Mandy McCarrick

The McCarrick dining room is accessorized with Snowmen and Santa ornaments and decorations.

This Christmas is different, but that does not mean it has to be worse than the past ones.