LAURINBURG — The Laurinburg Fire Department will declare an end to the holidays in a spectacular fashion on Thursday with a community Christmas tree burning at Legion Park.
The bonfire will be lit at 7 p.m. in the parking lot area off Atkinson Street in the second year of a tradition first rekindled in 2015. All are welcome to attend — and to bring graham crackers and chocolate to go with the marshmallows the fire department will have on hand.
“It wasn’t as big as we’ve seen in the past,” said Laurinburg Fire Chief Randy Gibson of last year’s event. “It was still a decent size, but it went pretty quick.”
Trees collected from Laurinburg curbs by the city’s public works department are already forming a burn pile. Those who live outside of Laurinburg may also drop off their live trees — stripped of ornaments, lights, and tinsel — at the park before Thursday afternoon to be burned along with the rest.
In addition to an opportunity to promote both literal and figurative warmth, the event will dispose of trees that would pose a significant fire hazard if allowed to dry out in local living rooms.
The fire department will also pass out coat hangers on Thursday night to roast marshmallows and any other food items attendees bring along.
“As the fire begins to die down the firefighters will pull some of the debris out so folks can have individual fires to roast marshmallows,” Gibson said. “We’ve seen some folks roast hot dogs out there.”
Firefighters will also be giving equipment demonstrations and passing out souvenirs to children.
“It looks like the weather’s going to be good, and we want to encourage folks in the community to come out and participate in fun and fellowship with friends and neighbors,” Gibson said.
Mary Katherine Murphy can be reached at 910-506-3169.