Non-profit bans Christmas tree on front lawn - CBS46 News

Non-profit bans Christmas tree on front lawn

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The Dunwoody Preservation Trust board has decided not to allow a Christmas tree or a menorah on its front lawn for Light up Dunwoody.

Dunwoody is just northeast of Atlanta.

The holiday celebration is hosted by the Dunwoody Homeowner's Association and is usually held at the preservation trust’s farm house.

In addition to lighting the Christmas tree this year, the homeowners association wanted to light a six foot menorah.

“We were concerned about putting the menorah on the lawn, “said Melanie Williams of the Dunwoody Preservation Trust. ‘

Williams said the board didn’t want to exclude any member of the community so it decided to ban all non-secular symbols. In a statement released to CBS46, the board asks that the homeowners association move the tree somewhere else. However, Williams said the board is still willing to hold the event at the farm house.

The homeowners association president, Robert Wittenstein, said he’s disappointed in the Preservation Trust’s decision and has decided to move the event elsewhere.

“It’s hard for us to reconcile a desire not to have the Christmas tree because its potentially a religious symbol, but welcome Santa and the reindeer,” said Wittenstein.

In a CBS46 exclusive interview, Williams said before making that decision, the preservation trust was threatened by the homeowners association. The non-profit denies doing so.

She also said Dunwoody’s mayor made threats.

“The mayor said the very same thing to both of us, which was you will get this situation resolved today. You will issue a press release saying that you've made a mistake. And if this is not done and I find the media at my door, I will throw Dunwoody preservation trust under the bus,” said Williams.

Dunwoody's mayor wouldn't comment when a CBS46 crew went to his office. However, the city spokesperson says he wants everyone to work together.

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