Mayor Dreaming Of Holiday Card From Entire Town
MELISSA BLOCK, host:
We're thinking not much work will get done next Friday afternoon in Naperville, Illinois. That's when the mayor of Naperville has asked all of the residents of the Chicago suburb to gather for a photo shoot for the city's annual holiday card.
George Pradel is Naperville's mayor, and he told me they plan to snap the picture from the city's 160-foot tall bell tower.
Mr. GEORGE PRADEL (Mayor, Naperville): We're going to try to gather people next to the tower, spell out peace, P-E-A-C-E.
BLOCK: That's the message for the holiday card, peace.
Mr. PRADEL: That's it. Because we're a very diversified city, and we were going to just put our arms together and make it a really great event because that's what it's all about.
BLOCK: Well, how many people live in Naperville?
Mr. PRADEL: One-hundred-and-forty-seven thousand people live in Naperville.
BLOCK: Wow. Well, if even a fraction of them show up, you've got a pretty big card right there.
Mr. PRADEL: Well, I hadn't thought about it, but right in the afternoon, we start our holiday parade. Our Santa comes to town, and he lights up the city. With all economy going south, and with all the things that are happening in our little families, we just need to lock our arms and say, you know, we're going to make it - and bring some cheer to the city of Naperville.
BLOCK: Yeah, you bet. Well, who gets the Naperville card?
Mr. PRADEL: Well, we send it to all of our employees. We send it to President Obama. We send it to the governor, Pat Quinn. We send it to senators that are in our area here.
BLOCK: Mayor Pradel, I hate to sound like a Scrooge, but in a time of economic hardship, how much taxpayer money goes into putting out the Naperville holiday card?
Mr. PRADEL: It's all electronic. So it's not using any of the monies from our city. But whatever we invest, it would be well increased in the relationships between people and happiness that I think it would bring.
BLOCK: Well, Mayor Pradel, good luck next Friday. And maybe we'll check in with you, and see how it went.
Mr. PRADEL: That'd be great. Okay. Happy holidays.
BLOCK: Same to you.
Mr. PRADEL: And peace on earth for everyone.
BLOCK: We'll talk to you soon.
Mr. PRADEL: Thank you.
BLOCK: That's George Pradel, the mayor of Naperville, Illinois, who's asked all 147,000 residents to gather for a photo next Friday at 2 p.m., for the city's holiday card.
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