By MADDY VITALE
If it was up to the Giordano family of Sea Isle City, they would keep their Christmas tree up year-round.
So, when they anchored a 6-foot-tall Douglas fir on 44th Street beach this year for the first time ever, complete with ornaments and holiday cheer, it was no surprise to those who know them.
And then, Shannon had an idea. Instead of taking the tree down, why not keep it up and decorate it for the next big holiday — Valentine’s Day.
The tree, she said, has become a symbol of hope, faith and joy during a year when the COVID-19 pandemic has changed life so drastically.
“We have decided to keep our tree up longer than expected as it has received so much love over the past month. Updating the tree with Valentine’s Day decor should bring more love to this beautiful place that we call Home. Please feel free to continue to visit the tree and add some Valentine’s Day decorations,” Shannon wrote on social media. “We hope everyone has a safe and happy 2021!”
On Tuesday in an interview with SeaIsleNews.com, Shannon explained how much joy the tree has brought to her family, especially the couple’s children, Gracelynn, 7, Giovanni, 6, and four-year-old Vincenzo.
“My kids loved putting the tree on the beach during Christmas. They helped decorate it. Then they helped take down the decorations,” Shannon said of the holiday.
Now, the children are enjoying placing red decorations and all things Valentine’s Day on the tree.
And so are a lot of other people.
“Some are love notes. Some are of people who passed away,” Shannon said. “People are adding ornaments to the tree and shells to the bottom of the tree. There are a lot of shells.”
Shannon noted that someone, she doesn’t know who, left a bag of paper hearts for people to write notes on and hang on the tree.
“It definitely gives people hope, joy and fun. We could all use that in the unfortunate times that we are in right now,” she said of the pandemic.
Shannon said as long as the tree stays in such good condition, they don’t want to take it down.
“On Saturday we took down all of the Christmas decorations and right away started putting up Valentine’s Day decorations,” she added. “We hope to continue this tradition every Christmas and keep it up for as long as we can. I can’t promise that it will make it to St. Patrick’s Day, but if it does, we will definitely have it all decorated.”