b"MESSAGEFROM THEMAYORAs I write this, Im getting a sense of dj vu. Over the summer I had the difcult task of telling you wemove forward with the paradeDay Celebration, but would still had to cancel our annualistmas WalkIndependence Kentucky Facebook page, you may haveIndependence and reworks. If you follow our Chr istmas Walk. The good news is well again moveheard that weve concluded the same for our annual Chrforward with our wonderful Lighted Christmas Parade, as well as the Santas 5K (more on that inside)! I would like to explain the thinking behind the cancellation of the Christmas Walk. For starters, this wasnot a unilateral decision from the City, since this is not an event unilaterally produced by the City. Since its inception 24 yearsago, this has been a collaborative effort between the City, County, local businesses and residents. In fact, the IndependenceBusiness Association has become our key partner over the years. While we normally start meeting in late summer, we held offthis year in hopes that things would look up. When it nally became time to make the call, I met with our various partners and itwas unanimously decided we just didnt see any way to safely hold the event. While some look at this as an outdoor event, thereality is we literally have thousands of people walk through various businesses and public buildings, usually packed in prettytightly. Even my house on the outskirts of the Walk averages 1,500 to 2,000 visitors each year. The Christmas Parade, however, is a solid outdoor event. We will follow the same extended route as the Independence Dayparade (Summit View Academy to Simon Kenton High School on old Madison Pike), and encourage people to spread out onthe route. Id also like to encourage you to consider taking part in the parade. Lets make it the biggest and the best ever! Maybethis is a project to be shared among a few family members, neighbors, friends, a church group, or another local organization. You might be amazed at what you can pull off with a pickup truck and a bunch of light strands. Rather than lament all of thethings this year has taken away from us, lets use it as an opportunity to try something new.As I close, Id like to share a couple things. First, you all know I like to talk about my Mom. Among the many things she loved,the Peanuts (particularly Snoopy), Christmas, and Christmas carols made it toward the top of the list. As a young child, one ofmy rst records was a Christmas album that included Snoopy vs. The Red Baron. The resounding theme was Christmas bellsbringing peace to all the world, and GOOD WILL TO MAN. That good will to man thing is pretty common at Christmas, butit sometimes gets overlooked the rest of the year. Maybe this year especially, we try to focus on that. Between divisive politicsand a divisive and stressful pandemic, its become easy to lose sight of that. I know I have at times.fact that were the thirdthe thing that sets Independence apart. Despite theof the counties inthats reallythan 70 percent At the end of the day, however,state, and actually have a higher populationtake care of each other. So letsNorthern Kentucky, 15th in thetend to be great neighbors whoyard, or an I Supportlargest city inbecause wesign in their we still feel like a small town. Thatsa mask, or has a Trump or Bidentrimmer, help youKentucky,that whether someone is or isnt wearingprobably happy to loan their neighbor aparade thistry to rememberLives Matterthat person is stilltheEven though well have a fantasticistmas,Law Enforcement or a Blackag,out for your kid atpark. year, Im really going to miss you stopping by the house for a cup of my Famous Cherry Cordial Hot Chocolate this Chr to passpick up your spilled groceries at Kroger, or watchlets dowe can to put thisbut its for the best. Weve made it this far in 2020,allIm going Independence, and seeing you on the Walk,In the meantime, Id like to leave you with somethingchapter behind us and turn the tide on rising cases. along my secret recipetaken straight from the pages of the family recipe book.Merry Christmas, Independence! Here's to The Mayors Famousa Happy (and less challenging) New Year!Cherry Cordial Hot ChocolateMayor Chris ReinersmanIngredients:Chocolate milkGrenadineShhhthe secret ingredient is grenadine (you know, that cherry syrup used to make aShirley Temple or kiddie cocktail). You can usually nd it in the cocktail mixers aisle at thegrocery or liquor store (dont worry, its non-alcoholic). Roses brand is the gold standard,but On the House works just as well and the bottle goes further. Kroger brand chocolatemilk works great, but you can use any brand you like. If youre making a single cup, just a small splash of grenadine will do. If youre making up a batch to share with the family, I usea ratio ofcup of grenadine to one gallon of chocolate milk. Cheers!2"