Rebuilding Community Decorations

Posted on Categories Business, Community, Workforce Engagement

At a Glance

At the request of the local Chamber of Commerce, Electronics Technology students at Connellsville Area Career and Technology Center are repairing community Christmas decorations.


In 2016, Connellsville Area Career and Technology Center (CACTC) Electronics Technology students began completely rebuilding the community Christmas tree decorations used in downtown Connellsville. The local fire department used to help the Chamber of Commerce maintain the decorations, but because the decorations are over 30 years old and need major electrical work, the Chamber reached out to CACTC for help.

In total, the students will rebuild 63 trees. The trees are about five feet tall and are placed on telephone poles throughout the downtown area. Students will rewire them and add LEDs which should last for more than 10 years.

The Electronics Technology instructor estimates that the work performed by the students will result in about an 80 to 85 percent savings on electricity. It will cost about $95 to rebuild each of the trees, compared to $350 to purchase a new tree.

Origin / Implementation

The Chamber of Commerce contacted the CACTC building principal for help with updating the community Christmas decorations. The building principal recommended that the Electronics Technology students help out because of the extensive electrical work required.

Students began work on the project in February 2016. The instructor expects students will complete the work by the end of the 2015-2016 school year or perhaps a little later.

The Electronics Technology class works on the decorations after students have completed regular classwork and lessons. Each student participates in the project, taking on one of the many tasks involved in rebuilding the decorations. These tasks include assembly, tearing down, wiring and performing quality control. 

Results / Impact

The Electronics Technology instructor reports that students enjoy working on the project. Although he expects the workmanship will last for many years, he plans to have his students address any future repairs that may be needed.


Connellsville Area Career and Technology Center
John Hamman, Electronics Technology Instructor