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Merry Christmas!

When you are a weekly newspaper, there is something exciting about getting to publish an edition labeled “December 25.” Though holiday deadlines mean you, our readers, should be receiving your Herald & Tribune a bit before the big day, the joy in sending out a Christmas edition is very real to all of us here at the H&T.

With that in mind, we have tried to include content especially appropriate for the holidays. Lorelei Goff’s front page story on the “Wild Women of Jonesborough” and their acts of giving are guaranteed to bring a tear to your eyes.

On the Genealogy page, John Kiener makes us a bit nostalgic by looking back at a past Christmas at the Herald & Tribune.

And throughout the paper, the many letters shared by Santa with us that we in turn get to share with you, should make everyone laugh with delight, as well as pause in thoughtful recognition of what Christmas really means.

For those of us here in the offices of the Herald & Tribune, we also consider this a day of blessings. In our role as Jonesborough’s community newspaper, there are so many and — as we end our 150th year of publication — we would like to share just a few.

We are thankful to the town and all its hardworking employees who not only keep Jonesborough successfully churning along, but who also graciously step in whenever we have a need.

We are thankful to local officials who continually make themselves available for our many phone calls and emails — and for their patience in answering question after question after question.

We are thankful for everyone who helps keep this little town big on arts and education, history and storytelling.

We are thankful for our time with Deborah Montanti, who retired this year as executive director of the Heritage Alliance, and we are thankful for her highly qualified replacement, Anne G’Fellers-Mason, who never thinks I’m a pest.

We are thankful for our time with Snuggles, who will continue to live on, courtesy of cartoonist Marcy Hawley, in upcoming pages of the Herald & Tribune. And we are thankful for Marcy.

We are also so very thankful for each other —  from John Kiener, who puts his heart and soul into the history of this town; for Marcella Peek, who works harder than anyone I have ever seen and loves each of her customers like they are family; for Marina Waters, who can capture the magic of story, leaving it to echo in your mind for days after; and for Lorelei Goff, who has helped keep us straight in 2019 with love and humor and has shown an unparalleled skill as a writer and columnist.

But mostly, dear Jonesborough and Washington County, I am thankful for all of you, and for the privilege off calling this piece of heaven my home.

Merry Christmas!

Lisa Whaley