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Empty lot in Wausau turns into a Christmas tree havenSubmitted: 12/06/2017
Erin Beu
Erin Beu
Reporter/Anchor
ebeu@wjfw.com

Empty lot in Wausau turns into a Christmas tree haven
WAUSAU - A neighborhood that some people might have deemed crime ridden now offers a touch of its own Christmas spirit.

Driving down the intersection of Third and Short Street in Wausau you can find socks, Santas and stockings hanging from trees.

"I guess they kind of reflect each person's personality," said Wausau River District Assistant Director Blake Opal-Wahoske.

Opal-Wahoske saw the empty lot and wanted to turn it into something special this year.

"[I wanted] to spread some Christmas cheer," said Opal-Wahoske.

Opal-Wahoske teamed up with a bar owner to turn the empty lot into the "Christmas Lives Here Lot."
"Each neighbor and some bartenders have decorated trees," said Opal-Wahoske.

However, the area hasn't always been this well-lit up.

"It was a very crime ridden area," said Opal-Wahoske.

Opal-Wahoske says in the past decade the city has redeveloped the area.

"If you came to this neighborhood 10 [or] 15 years ago you wouldn't recognize it," Opal-Wahoske.

Now, the only issue Opal-Wahoske sees is the wind knocking down all the trees.

"Oh my gosh that wind was wicked," said Opal-Wahoske.

Regardless if the trees stand tall or stand down, Opal-Wahoske hopes the "Christmas Lives Here Lot" will come around for years to come.

"I'm proud to call this home," Opal-Wahoske.


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