Caroling at Glenview Fire Station No. 7 [Photo by Ann Scheidler]
A few days before Christmas, the Village Board of Glenview, IL ordered fire fighters at Fire Station No. 7 to remove all the Christmas decorations inside their firehouse. Someone had seen a Christmas tree and Santa Claus through the window and complained.
Learning of this injustice, League Executive Director Ann Scheidler, who grew up in Glenview and whose father served as a volunteer fireman in Glenview for many years, issued a press release, inviting concerned citizens of Glenview and the surrounding area to gather at Fire Station No. 7 and sing carols at noon on Christmas Eve. “The firefighters don’t just work here,” she said. “They live here when they are on duty. They have a right to bring the Christmas spirit to their home away from home.”
The carolers were warmly received by the fire fighters, to whom they gave a Santa Claus Fireman figurine. Several media outlets sent reporters, and the caroling was featured on NBC Channel 5 News and in the Metro section of the Chicago Tribune. In the evening another group came and set up a lighted Christmas tree next to the firehouse with a sign: “Glenview is a Scrooge-free zone.”
A representative of the local fire fighters union wrote to thank the League for restoring the Christmas spirit at Station No. 7.