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Eagle Lake residents gather to celebrate Christmas

EAGLE LAKE, Maine — Local business owners and residents came together Sunday, Dec. 23, to celebrate the Christmas holiday with an afternoon of hayrides and caroling, and of course, gifts for the children.

Therese Roalf (left) and her son Buck Paradis sing Christmas carols during a holiday hayride in Eagle Lake on Sunday, Dec. 23. (Courtesy of Stacy Belanger)

Eagle Lake resident Stacy Belanger attended the event held at a variety of businesses throughout town with her husband Mark Belanger and their young son Drew.

“A spark can ignite a flame of goodness and it was evident today,” Stacy Belanger said Sunday. “Each business offered a little holiday cheer. It was nice to see this happen in Eagle Lake.”

Eagle Lake resident Roy Roalf worked with Bald Eagle Inc. convenience store and gas station employee Tom Roy to organize the event.

“We kind of put things together and decided it would be a very good idea to do this,” Roalf said.

Roalf said that Roy contacted other businesses in town to get them on board for the holiday event.

“Of course he wanted to include everyone in the community,” Roalf said of Roy. “Everybody had a job.”

Among those jobs, Roalf and his wife Therese Roalf provided free hayrides around town. Roy pulled the family’s 22 foot trailer with his pick-up while Therese and her son, Buck Paradis, led riders in singing Christmas carols over a sound system on the back.  

“It was full all afternoon,” Roy Roalf said of the trailer turned hayride. “Everybody was  Christmas caroling and nobody got hurt.”

Buck Paradis, from left, Therese Roalf and Roy Roalf provided free hayrides in Eagle Lake on Sunday, Dec. 23. (Courtesy of Stacy Belanger)

Roy Roalf also contacted Toys for Tots who donated gifts for 150 children.

“Each business offered a little holiday cheer,” Stacy Belanger said. “Cloud 9 Salon and Spa did free mini massages for adults and cookie decorating for the kids. Bald Eagle had eggnog, warm drinks and fresh sugar cookies as well as live music. Eagle Lake Grocery had Santa’s elves passing out presents to the children. R and M’s had homemade gingerbread milkshakes and cookie decorating for the children. MJ’s Pub and Grub had homemade chicken stew and ployes. The hayride was lead by (Ashland Chief of Police and Eagle Lake resident) Cyr Martin and followed by the Eagle Lake Fire Trucks. It was a wonderful time for all.”

Roy Roalf said he plans to help put on the holiday event again next year.

“It does bring the community together which is good and around Christmas everybody needs that,” he said. “Everybody had a good time. It went very smoothly and we plan next year to make it bigger.”

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