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NEW: Chafee to Call State House Tree “Christmas Tree” This Year

Monday, December 02, 2013

 

Governor Lincoln Chafee issued the following statement on this year's naming of the Rhode Island State House Tree -- which will now be called a "Christmas Tree."  

Statement from Governor Chafee

"In 2011, my first year celebrating December in the State House I gave a simple six word instruction to the planners of the annual tree lighting: “Do what they did last year.”

Despite the myriad of pressing issues facing Rhode Island and the nation, this presumably happy event became a focal point for too much anger. Strangely lost in the brouhaha was any intellectual discussion of the liberties pioneered here in Rhode Island 350 years ago in our Charter. Because I do not think how we address the State House tree affects our “lively experiment,” this year’s invitation calls the tree a Christmas tree.

Secretary of State Mollis has offered to light the tree, and I have accepted his gracious offer. The tree lighting will be on Thursday (December 5, 2013) at 5:30 p.m. in the State House rotunda. Once again, our many thanks to all those who have worked hard to make our State House festive."


Related Slideshow:
GoLocalProv Contributors Give Thanks

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Dean Starkman

Rhode Island ratepayers can be thankful they don't have to pay extra on their electric bill for costly "smart meters," unlike their burdened neighbors in Worcester. Plus Rhode Island can be thankful it's halfway -- more or less -- through the foreclosure crisis stemming from the 2008 financial crisis. Thank goodness for small favors. On the newspaper scene, I'm thankful that...well, that there will be another Thanksgiving next year, at which time -- with any luck -- A.H. Belo's inglorious ownership of the Projo will have come to an end.'

Read Dean Starkman

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Russell Moore

Rhode Islanders should be thankful for our biggest asset—our people. On the whole, we Rhode Islanders are hardworking, generous, and know how to have fun. Rhode Island has scores of excellent non-profit organizations—such as the RI Food Bank, Rhode Island Blood Center, and South Providence Neighborhood Ministries--where people donate their money and time to help those less fortunate than themselves. We can be thankful that there are scores of businessmen and women taking risks, employing people, and creating jobs. Innovative jewelry companies like Crimzon Rose in West Warwick and Alex and Ani in Cranston continue Rhode Island’s proud manufacturing tradition while technology startups like Swipely located in Providence connect us to the future. Rhode Island is also a great place for sports fans to catch a game. Whether its the Pawtucket Red Sox, Providence Bruins, or one of our exciting college teams, Little Rhodey's sports attractions don't disappoint. And our dining and nightlife options are second to none. Those are just a few reasons we should be thankful to be Rhode Islanders.

Read Russell Moore

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Michael & Ann Martini

This year we are thankful for the respect and camaraderie in Rhode Island's food community. The sharing of information amongst chefs and farmers and fishermen has raised the level of food in our state exponentially and we look forward to seeing where these talented artisans take it from here.

Read Michael & Ann Martini, Food Editors

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Scott Cordischi

From a sports perspective, Rhode Island should be thankful for the great run that New England sports teams continue to be on. With the Red Sox World Series title, that's now 8 championships combined between the Sox, Pats, Celtics and Bruins in the last 13 years. And that total doesn't even include other deep playoff runs by those franchises during that time period. We don't know how lucky we have it with our pro sports teams!

Read GoLocal Sports

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Gary Sasse

I am thankful for:

1- The people generously working to improve the quality of life for all Rhode Islanders.

2- Rhode Island's tradition of meeting adversity by joining together to find solutions for the common good.

3- Family values

Read Gary Sasse

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Frank Barbosa

Rhode Island should be thankful for having beautiful people-- not only on the outside, but inside as well.

Read Frank Barbosa's The Look

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Amy Gallagher

We should be thankful that most large employers meet the requirements of providing suitable health insurance coverage – and that most in RI and MA are continuing to provide this coverage.

Read Amy Gallagher's Smart Benefits

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Carol Anne Costa

Where else can you pick a peck of apples in the lush foothills at daybreak, gather fresh dairy products from good Rhody cows at lunch, toss a line into a pristine lake for fresh water fish in the early evening, bring it all to any number of awesome chefs to prepare for dinner and jump in the Atlantic ocean for a late night swim? Only in Rhode Island! RI should be thankful for its size, its farmers, its natural resources, its diversity,its spirit and above all its motto.... Hope!

Read Carol Anne Costa

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Cristiana M. Quinn

I think Rhode Islander's should be thankful for our long history of tolerance and open-mindedness, from Roger Williams' stand on religious freedom to this year's Marriage Equality Act.

Read Cristiana M. Quinn's College Admissions

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John T. Longo

The Pope recently praised capitalism but said we have to make sure it does not lead to the powerful feeding off the powerless. We should be thankful we have elected nationally recognized consumer rights advocates - like Senators Reed, Whitehouse and Warren - who understand that. They pass up media attention and lobbyist’ money to work on issues that really affect hardworking people. That’s true public service.

Read John T. Longo's Legal Matters

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Lisa Blais

Our political theatre with its unique, quirky ways filled with many colorful personalities! Seriously though, everyday taxpayers have opportunities to engage our elected officials and political candidates due to our small size which just might provide promise for the future of little ol' Rhody. Oh yes, and that we haven't gone over the brink (yet). RI should also be thankful for our fierce protection of freedom of speech and thirst for knowledge about current events brought to us with thanks to some RI radio personalities, state house coverage from Projo and our own GoLocalProv.com! And, for our generosity for those less fortunate. Wishing everyone a peaceful and happy Thanksgiving

Read Lisa Blais

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Frank Crandall

Rhode Islander’s should be thankful that we live in one of the most beautiful areas of the country bounded by over 400 miles of scenic coastline. Regardless of the challenges we face, our people continue to move forward, innovate and strive to succeed and be happy. That indomitable spirit is what separates our community from many others. On this Thanksgiving let’s all give thanks for living and working in RI.. the best little state in the country!

Read Frank Crandall's Landscape Now

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Leonard Moorehead

RI gardeners have never had it so good! We have just the right amount of sunshine, rain, warmth and cold to grow a multitude of fruits, vegetables, berries and herbs. Toss into the salad bowl our multi-cultural heritage of peoples and cultures for eye popping gardens. From a single pot to enormous plots, the urge to grow your own happens in RI.

Read Leonard Moorehead's Urban Gardener

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Donna MacDonald

Rhode Island should be thankful for its delightful assortment of unique clothing boutiques in quaint villages scattered across the state. These small shops keep the Rhode Island woman as chic and sophisticated as her big city sisters, affordably and with artisan quality. Fashionable trifles and touches found right in the short square miles of our collective backyard!

Read Beauty Expert, Donna MacDonald

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Kristin MacRae

Due to the fact that the RI economy has not been doing well, I'm thankful that RI still has a bright outlook as being a beautiful state with good resources for travel and tourism.

Read Kristin MacRae's Organize + Energize

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John Rooke

Rhode island sports fans should be thankful for an improving local basketball scene... PC, URI, Brown, and Bryant are all competitive. And that hasnt been the case for a while!

Read GoLocal Sports

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Didi Lorillard

I'm deeply thankful to live on beautiful Aquidneck Island where the sky is never the same color, where people and winds change with the season. Newport is an awesome place. It's not just about the beautiful houses and excellent restaurants, the farms and vineyards, it's about a gentle population whose hearts are filled with goodwill. You find small communities within the community where one can play tennis at the casino year round and help collect food pantry goods for the Martin Luther King Center in the same day. When we work together, we keep out the corporate gambling casinos and stand fast on a local noise variance. Islanders are constantly networking to maintain and improve Newport's integrity for all of us, our children and grandchildren.

Read Didi Lorillard's Newport Manners

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Julia Steiny

RI should be thankful for those people who are deeply committed to trying to improve the welfare and education of its children under incredibly adverse circumstances.

Read Julia Steiny

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Rob Horowitz

We Rhode Islanders should be thankful this year and every year for our high quality of life--our beautiful and accessible beaches, our great restaurants, our state parks, our rich arts sector and most of all, the true sense of living in a close-knit community. with real human connections that enrich all of our lives. We should be especially thankful this year because state officials put the time and energy into setting up our own state health exchange and as a result more of us will have health insurance next year.

Read Rob Horowitz

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John Simpson

This year and every year, Rhode Island should be thankful for founder Roger Williams. Champion of religious liberty and freedom of conscience when such things were unthinkable, respectful and respected friend of the Narragansetts and other tribes, and very early abolitionist, Roger Williams was far, far ahead of his time in 1636. Heck, if he were born today, he'd still be ahead of his time. A remarkable man.

Read John Simpson's Dear John

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Dan Lawlor

"You, you come from Rhode Island, little old Rhode Island, it's famous for you!" -Erin McKeown (song)

The people of the Ocean State do so much good - from the fight against malnutrition internationally lead by Providence based Edesia to the state's Coalition for the Homeless's years long struggle to provide housing for all Rhode Islanders. I am in awe of the energy and genuine creativity modeled by people across the state, in big and small ways. May every political leader gain the chutzpah of our community advocates!

Read Dan Lawlor's Side of the Rhode

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Stephen Beale

Rhode Islanders should be thankful they were spared the specter of a second municipal bankruptcy. Woonsocket came close earlier this year, but thanks to the hard work of local and state officials, along with the sacrifices of countless city workers, the Ocean State’s sixth largest city was able to navigate its way through troubled financial waters—leaving it to Detroit to become the national poster child for municipal insolvency.

Read Stephen Beale

 
 

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Comments:

Gary Arnold

Merry Christmas and thank goodness Chafee is going to be out of embarrassing RI any further.
As for RI's thanks, let's get real: High unemployment, lowest education rating, high state debt, only state losing population, countries most expensive fire departments, a GA made up of life long politicians and cronies that do not have a clue on how to plan and develop a business friendly infrastructure, a Governor that is a lost cause when we needed a strong leader. Yes we have a lot to be thankful for, we can still pay unreasonable taxes, we can work in MA, we can be taxed on taxes and if we can afford to go to the coast we can see wind turbines being built.
RI is a mess and will continue this way until there is a crises which will most likely happen in the next 5 years.
But I still believe in wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and for those that celebrate other festive times, may happiness be with you.

joe pregiato

Chaffee is an ass. RI is headed straight toward a financial disaster and he has only exascerbated the problem. I hope he takes his entire Holiday Tree and shoves it.




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