In years past, Glass House Collective has hosted a large holiday party event, but this year, residents led the way in celebrating Christmas in a more intimate setting. Katie McCallister took charge of overall plans for the December 15, 2016 event, drawing from volunteers within the Good Neighbor Network to pull of the details, coordinating main food and drink arrangements, while side dishes and deserts were contributed potluck-style by individual friends and neighbors.

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The gathering proved the perfect setting in which to honor local leaders like Dr. Everlena Holmes, acknowledged by Teal Thibaud and Dawn Hjelseth for her leadership over the Block Leaders program in the Glass Farms neighborhood. Then Dr. Holmes surprised Glenda Welcher, Janette Richie, Johnny Patmon, and Jeffery Evans as well, awarding them plaques in recognition of their work as Block Leaders in the neighborhood. After a nice thank you note and welcome read by Mr. Johnny Patmon, everyone was encouraged to fill their plates and enjoy the music and friendly conversation.

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The photo booth set up in the back room by local photographer, Andrew Rodgers, provided goofy entertainment as well as printable party favors that attendees could take home or have e-mailed to themselves to print later. And it felt like not a single neighbor went away empty handed, as dozens of gifts were handed out as door prizes throughout the night. 

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Everyone seemed to agree that occasions like this allow for vital friendships and relaxed conversation to flow, building the backbone of a strong proud community where everyone is welcome, taking turns to give and receive.

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