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  • Deb Nilles

Little Lit Tree on The Prairie Path


There is a little illuminated 'mystery tree' in Naperville. A tree that has seemed to capture the heart and imagination of many, including this writer. Driving on Book Road between 75th and 87th you'll see it ever year. A single tree stands on the west side of the street, alone, adorned with Christmas lights. It's hard to miss! But, who lights that tree? No one knows. A recent post on What's Happening Naperville went near viral on this subject. What everyone seems to agree on is that this tradition dates very far back. Someone has been lighting the tree consistently; reverently, for decades. Some say it is a memorial tree marking the scene of car accident long ago. Others hypothesize it's done by a forest ranger. Then, a second tree appeared decorated a bit further south on Book Road. And residents of Naperville make a special effort to drive down Book to spot them. My favorite theory; however, was shared by a Mom on the post: “My kids call them The Magic Christmas Trees. They believe Santa places them there for all the animals who live in the prairie....” Magic trees! I agree! That a lone decorated tree on the prairie could invoke so much in all who see and look for it every year is nothing less than magical. And proves that a beacon of light need only be a small one in order to shine brightly in the heart of man. And woman. And child! Truly special. A last contributor to the popular topic board sums it up quite nicely: "I have my suspicions.....a very good person does it." And we thank them. Whoever does this for our community is a very good person. Indeed. We wish you a Merry Christmas.

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