Charles P. "Pop" Squires
December 25, 1954
The First Christmas in Las Vegas

"THE coming of the Christmas season does something to us which, if we could only retain it during the days to come would not only make us a better and happier people but also do wonders for our community as well.

I often think of our first Christmas here on the Clark Townsite. Many of our people were in distress financially and physically and were longing for the old home and the loved one they had left behind but with the coming of the birthday of the Christ Child they remembered those Christmas days in the old home and decided that Las Vegas children should not be cheated out of their heritage - the enjoyment of a real Christmas.

The Las Vegas Sunday school assisted by the Eagles Lodge planned the happy event aided and abetted by the parents and non parents - i.e., which means by everyone who loves children.

The large garage on Main Street just north of the Las Vegas hotel was chosen as the setting for the event. The Eagles manifested its liberality, as usual, by offering to provide the tree and a treat for each child in Las Vegas so that no matter what the circumstances of their home no child would be entirely overlooked that year.

When the hour arrived for the first Christmas entertainment for Las Vegas the big garage was crowded with people both big and little. All were intent on making the event a merry one; and it is safe to say that all were amply rewarded - the little folk with the good things provided for their delight and the older ones with the joy of seeing the children happy.

The Christmas tree donated by the Eagles, shown respondent with lights, candy, fruits and nuts for the girls and boys.

Kind hands had erected a stage for the use of the performers who were to take part in the program, which had been arranged by the school teacher, Miss Alna Tuttle. The program consisted of an opening prayer by the pastor, Rev. Bain, of songs, recitations and a Christmas play which was very well given. The song Jingle Bells sung by Ollie Cavelleri was especially well done.

So ended the first Christmas, it was a small affair, numerically speaking but a large one in the eyes of the Master because it was given in the spirit of love.

What a beautiful inspiration the thought of Christmas-tide brings upon all of us. What a greater love, what a mightier purpose this unselfish spirit enforces - just, gentle, strong - life is sweet but only in the sense that one makes it sweet; the patience, the kindness, the generosity, the unselfishness and the sincerity are at this time, the supreme gift that denotes the true being.

At this season of 'Peace on Earth and good will to men' all animosities should be thrown aside and our sympathy with the hopes, joys and sorrows of our fellows be as broad as the love and charity of the Master whose birth the day celebrates.

Let the bells all over the world ring out their glad tidings of 'Joy to the world' and let our pulses throb in unison.

Let me remember that this is the season for kindly word and deed. For Christian charity - 'Faith, Hope and Charity' and the greatest of these is charity."