Letter from Lonsdale girl leads to star atop Christmas tree - FOX 13 News

Letter from Lonsdale 4-year-old leads to star atop Christmas tree

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A little girl who wrote to her city leaders prompted a change in holiday cheer, and the 4-year-old's family told Fox 9 News how the star came to be placed atop the city's Christmas tree.

At a time when some cities feel pressured to keep their holiday decorations neutral, one Minnesota mayor was moved by a letter from a very young citizen.

Each year, the city of Lonsdale, Minn., celebrates the holidays by lighting a nearly 60-foot-tall Christmas tree in Lions Park. This year, however, it took seeing Christmas through the eyes of a child to make sure the job was done right.

If there's one thing that can be said about the Franek family, it's that they love to spread Christmas cheer. In fact, their home is adorned with more than 4,000 lights.

"We make Christmas a big deal at our house," Bre Franek said.

Yet, when the family was driving through town, Lacie Franek noticed something as missing from the community's tree in the park.

"It's not a Christmas tree without a star or angel," she said.

At her insistence, the family helped the 4-year-old exercise her civic duty by drafting a letter to the mayor.

"She told me what she wanted to say, and we kind of spelled it out because we're working on spelling and writing at school," Bre Franek explained.

Lonsdale Mayor Tim Rud received the hand-written letter, and he showed it to Fox 9 News.

"Dear Mr. Mayor, please put a star on top of the Christmas tree in Lonsdale," Mayor Tim Rud read aloud. "All Christmas trees need a star or angel. You could have the firefighters help you or even ask my dad."

The letter led Rud to bring up the topic of the star-less Christmas tree at that night's City Council meeting. Although it's often said "you can't fight City Hall," but everyone agreed the problem needed to be addressed.

"It just never came to our attention and nobody ever brought it up and didn't think anything of it," Rud said. "It took a 4-year-old little girl from Lonsdale to figure out we needed a star, so it's pretty awesome."

With just one week until the holiday, the fire department used their aerial ladder truck to place the star on the top of the tree -- and they gave Lacie Franek the honor of turning on that final, five-pointed light before getting a high-five from the mayor.

After 5 years of lighting the tree in the park, city officials tell Fox 9 News the star will stick around for years to come.

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