60,000 Visitors Expected for IBEW Holiday Display
December 22, 2011
Encouraged by a blitz of local media coverage, more than 60,000 Minnesotans are expected to drive through the Twin Cities’ fourth annual IBEW Holiday Lights in the Park between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.
A TV feature on KARE- 11, shows IBEW Twin Cities Marketing Director Vicki Sandberg throwing the switch to power the lighting exhibit in St. Paul’s Phalen Park She promotes the skills of electricians who worked for four days to set up 55 displays leased by their local unions and delivered on two large trucks. The two locals are among the display’s co-sponsors. Says Sandberg:
Co-sponsored by King of Kings Lutheran Church, Holiday Lights in the Park has its own Web site and also produced a CD of holiday music by 15 local artists, which is sold in local supermarkets with proceeds going to the nonprofits including Second Harvest Heartland, a food pantry; Union Gospel Mission and the St. Paul Parks Conservancy. Says Sandberg:
Mary DesJarlais, who coordinates UnderConstruction, says funds received from the annual lighting exhibit are invaluable in sustaining the program during a time when philanthropies, sponsoring contractors and labor organizations have trouble maintaining past donations.
The seven-year-old program is open to high school youths who submit resumes to work on a small construction project for the summer. Unlike young people who are steered by family elders into apprenticeship programs, many have no adults in their families with construction experience. Says DesJarlais:
Says IBEW International President Edwin D. Hill: