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WELCOME TO CHESHIRE’S LIGHTS OF HOPE

ATTENTION: 2021 EVENT POSTPONEMENT

Our event has been postponed until Saturday, November 20 due to inclement weather forecasted for Saturday, November 13.

Cheshire’s Lights of Hope Statement from Don Walsh, President

May 2022

Cheshire’s Lights of Hope began in 2005 as a local event created to bring together our neighbors. Two years later, with the help of hundreds of volunteers, my wife, Jenifer, and I made Cheshire’s Lights of Hope a town-wide luminary event.

Every November for the past 17 years, our event has grown. Together we have raised $1.1 million for local charities and students in the Cheshire community. The Cheshire Community Food Pantry, Cheshire Youth and Social Services, and The Petit Family Foundation have been the main recipients. We are also proud of the two, $2,000 scholarships we have presented annually to Cheshire students based on their volunteer work within the community.

The simple act of gathering neighbors and lighting a luminary has had a significant impact on our community. That is why it is with extremely mixed feelings that we have made the difficult decision to announce that this year’s luminary event on November 12, 2022, will be the final one for our organization.

We have met with the Board of Directors and explained that the time commitment is incredible, and we feel that we have given as much as we possibly can to the organization.

It is a challenging decision because we are concerned about the organizations we have been supporting for many years and who rely on our grants so they can help those they work with.

It is our hope that other individuals or groups will step up to continue to support these worthwhile organizations.

We hope this year’s event will receive the full support of the community and be the largest to date. We want to present local community organizations with grants that will sustain them for a while.

We want to thank our Board of Directors, Executive Committee, the hundreds of selfless volunteers, and generous sponsors who have supported our mission of neighbors helping neighbors over these past 17 years. We never expected to have this impact on our community and hope we can leave a lasting legacy of volunteerism.

Thank You Cheshire!

Cheshire’s Lights of Hope is thrilled to announce that we raised $85,000 in 2021, taking our total
funds raised to over $1,085,000 in 17 years! These efforts from within our community allowed us
to make donations to the Cheshire Community Food Pantry, Cheshire Youth and Social Services
Department, The Petit Family Foundation, The Cheshire Food Drive and earmark funds for our 2022
CHS Scholarship winners. Thank you to all the Town’s residents, business sponsors, students and
committee members who partook in this year’s event—what a success!  Read more about our event Sponsors, Scholarship winners, and Luminary Award winners.

Our 2021 Luminary EveNT

“This year’s November 13 20, 2021 annual event is an opportunity to pause for a moment and reflect on our work over the past 16 years and celebrate our collective achievements as a community,” said Don Walsh. “What started as a small neighborhood gathering has expanded beyond our expectations every year. We’re grateful for our generous volunteers, our sponsors, and the community who comes together to celebrate and advance our mission.”

Our 2020 Luminary EveNT

The afternoon ceremony for the 2020 event on the First Congregational Church Green was adapted to accommodate COVID-19 protocols and closed to the public. Don Walsh and Jenifer Walsh proudly announced the increase in donations and sales of luminary kits allowed the nonprofit to increase grants and award:

  • $14,500 to the Cheshire Community Food Pantry
  • $14,500 to Cheshire Youth and Family Services
  • $8,500 to the Petit Family Foundation
  • $2,000 to the Cheshire Food Drive
  • $1,000 grant to the Cheshire YMCA a $1,000 grant
  • Plus $2,000 each for scholarships for two volunteer-oriented high school seniors

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2022 Event Countdown

85Days 12Hours 20Minutes 49Seconds

IN THE SPOTLIGHT


Celebrating its 17th year, Cheshire’s Lights of Hope has raised $1,085,000 for local charities since its birth in one small neighborhood

DID YOU KNOW?


Luminaries purchased: Over 700,000


Scholarships awarded: Over $36,500 to 17 deserving high school graduates


Number of volunteers: thousands


Number of sponsors: over 200 businesses, individuals and families


Miles lit up: over 250 miles