needed to light up Versailles tradition
bring joy to Joe
a little, or in this case a lot, of help from the community, plans
are to light up the Joe Day residence this weekend.
First reports in the Osgood Journal before Thanksgiving
indicated that due to Days diagnosis and treatment of lung
cancer, he would not be having his spectacular light display the
community has grown accustomed to for the past 32 years in Versailles.
He told the Osgood Journal he just wasnt able to
The property, known as the Wye, is located at US 421 and US 50
and has drawn thousands to its display of handmade houses, characters,
the manger scene, a giant bell and much more including thousands
of twinkling lights.
Bill McDonald told the Osgood Journal, he read the article
in the newspaper with a heavy heart. First, after having a lump
removed from his lung, he went through a time where he wasnt
certain of the future for himself. I know somewhat what
Joe is going through he noted. Secondly, he felt that Joe
might be saddened by the darkness surrounding his house - after
having thousands of lights for so many years.
I called a few friends, and then called Joe, he noted.
What began as an idea by McDonald, began to grow as people heard
about his effort. He contacted Superior Court Judge James Morris,
who jumped on board, according to McDonald. He also
contacted Sheriff Tom Grills, who was also another supporter of
Now the entire community is being asked to become a part of this
massive effort to decorate the Day residence this weekend.
Well start on Friday, but the big day is Saturday,
(December 12) McDonald told the Osgood Journal. He said
they need several teams to help erect the many little wooden houses
and get everything in place. The effort usually takes Day months
to assemble and get ready. One man, many months, several people,
one Saturday, might be the motto as McDonald calls for those who
have enjoyed the display to come together.
Being the Grand Knight for the Knights of Columbus, McDonald said
their motto is to be the difference that makes a difference.
He said he decided to practice what he preaches and be the difference
for Joe and the community.
After visiting with Day, McDonald has long-term goals for the
Christmas display. He said that Day has expressed interest in
getting someone to take over the display, but it seems massive
for just one group. McDonalds proposal is for several organizations
to come together under one umbrella to unite for this cause.
But, in the meantime many volunteers are needed to be at the Day
residence at US 421 and US 50 on Saturday at 8 a.m. If you need
childcare, St. Johns Catholic Church in Osgood is providing
Lets light up the Wye and bring some joy to Joe,
McDonald encourages everyone. He says this is a small thing to
do for someone who has solely provided so much light for others
for so long. This is a way for everyone who has enjoyed
the display over the years to say thank you,
To organize the teams McDonald needs volunteers to contact him
at 812-689-6699 or his wife, Toni at 812-621-1344.
On Sunday, another group, under the leadership of Doug Rump, is
planning a choral effort to bring the sounds of the season to
the Day home. Under the direction of Days son, Darrell,
a community choir can be heard on December 13 from 2-4 p.m. as
they carol for cancer.
According to Rump, the choir from the St. Paul Lutheran Church,
Olean, invite area church choirs and individuals to come together
to sing at the Day home at Versailles. This is a way for
the community to give back to Joe for his unselfish act of kindness
in providing the light display for so long, Rump told the
Osgood Journal. Those wishing to donate to the cancer society
may do so at the event.