This is What It’s Like Living on Billings’ Christmas Wreath Lane
When I moved into my rental on Avenue D in Billings and opened the garage last February, I saw the giant Christmas wreath hanging on the wall. It had to be at least five feet in diameter -- I'd never seen a house wreath that large. It was twirled up with lights, green garland, and a two- or three-foot tall fake candle standing from the bottom.
"Wow," I thought. "My roommate must really be into Christmas."
Unbeknownst to me, I had just moved into one of the most charming neighborhoods in Billings that boasted a long-standing tradition.
"Oh everyone has a wreath like that!" My roommate from Colorado explained. She lived at this house over last Christmas, and I was just joining her lease. "Avenue D is the Christmas Wreath Lane, so each house has a wreath they put up on the front of their house every year."
Sure enough, as December rolled around, I saw the wreaths being put up one by one on my neighbors' houses, from 17th Street down to Rose Park. The wreath in our garage, turns out, is an original handmade wreath from when the tradition started in 1960.
According to Simply Local Magazine, an Avenue D resident designed and made the five-foot wreaths for their neighborhood. Some years they undergo transformations to fit a theme, like gold and sparkling for the 50th anniversary, Simply Local reported.
The houses remain the wreaths' forever homes as residents move in and out of Avenue D. Thus explains the wreath in our garage.
On Christmas Eve this year, I saw Avenue D welcome tens if not hundreds of cars down the lane as people were enamored by the glistening tradition. It was the busiest I'd ever seen our quiet little street.
Seeing humans come together for something as simple as hanging similar wreaths that have lasted decades was awe-inspiring. With as much as we have to argue about in today's day and age, we can still find heart-warming community in traditions.