The true magic of the holiday season

Published 8:00 am Thursday, December 22, 2022

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

“Christmas – that magic blanket that wraps itself about us, that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance. It may weave a spell of nostalgia. Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, but always it will be a day of remembrance – a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved.” ~ Augusta E. Rundel 


This month of winter, it’s time to remember those things we treasure most–those we hold closest. The holiday season in Saluda has always been one of my favorite times; the glow of hearth, scents of pine branches, wood smoke, and baking bread, and downtown buildings twinkling with glowing holiday lights on dark December evenings. There’s something magical about standing still, watching our town’s Main Street on a late, peaceful December night. 

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox


It’s time to slow our too-busy whirl, to take time to reflect. When we’re children, it’s easier to think the more you get for Christmas, the better. The day comes when you understand that the truest (and best) gifts are really those we love. Sharing a cup of steaming tea with a friend or receiving a hand-written letter from a loved one are the gifts that matter. 


Simple things are the best things: a good book, a warm dog, a purring cat, a tin of homemade treats, hugs, juicy tangerines, and the aroma of pipe tobacco. All have places in our hearts, pinpoints of light glimmering. So Dear Reader, whether we celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or other holidays this time of year, it all comes down to thinking of everything and everyone we have loved. 


However you celebrate, may you sit at the table of love, wherever you may be.


Saluda Fire & Rescue’s firefighter of the year is Brian Davis; EMT of the year is Garrett Cairnes, and officer of the year is Vance Gordon. 


Saluda Visitor Center at 20 W. Main Street is open 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. daily and will close for a holiday break from December 24-31. Contact Lynn Casey at if you’d like to volunteer or need information. 


Saluda Pop-Up Pantry is Tuesday from 1 p.m.-6 p.m. at Saluda Presbyterian Church, 54 Carolina Avenue (behind Saluda Library). To volunteer at the Pantry, call Saluda Church of the Transfiguration, at 828-749-9740. The Pantry has doubled the clients it helps this year and needs your financial support: mail tax-deductible donations to Saluda Pop-Up Pantry, P.O. Box 428, Saluda, NC 28773 or donate online at www.saludapantrycom; or through Amazon Smile.


Saluda School will be on holiday break until January 3. 


Saluda Center (64 Greenville Street) will have a Christmas Dinner potluck at 1:30 on Christmas Day—bring a side dish if you can. For information or to volunteer to help: call Aurelia Mayer at (828) 749-3591.


Saluda Sympathy goes to the family of Leon Morgan, a Saluda native who has been a business owner, long-time city council member, and a big part of Saluda’s heart. 


Saluda Sympathy also goes to the family of Lesesne Smith—the family for which Smith Hill is named. Lesesne loved books, croquet on the lawn in summer, and adventures with his sisters, Alice and Clara. He will be missed. 


Happy December birthday to Judy Ward, Holly Wilkes, Theresa Wilkes, Perry Ellwood, Donnie Hunter, Jeff Bradley, Preston Mintz, Carolyn Morgan, Susan Casey, Jeff Jenkins, Nikki Ammerman, Cas Haskell, Mary O. Ratcliffe, Laura Fields, Lord Blanton, Beth Brand, Jim Carson, Susan Ansley, Tom DeKay, and Ana Lilburn. Add your birthday to the list! 


Feel free to contact me at, (828) 817-6765, P.O. Box 331, Saluda, NC 28773, Facebook, or visit