Skip to Content

Bend group’s trailside Christmas decorations yanked


For years, a Bend group has been trying to spread holiday cheer by dressing up trees along trails with Christmas decorations. But not everyone is feeling the spirit this time around.

Tom Cappy organizes a Meetup group. For the past five years, the group has gathered to secretly decorate various trails with Christmas ornaments for others to enjoy. He said there were never any problems, but this year, when the group was out on Saturday decorating the Deschutes River Trail, something was different.

“A — I’ll just call him a Grinch — came through, and he was very, very upset,” Cappy said Tuesday. “And he was (talking about) federal law, a $500 fee, (saying) ‘You’re littering,’ and technically, he may be right.”

The next day, most of the decorations had been taken down.

Cappy acknowledges that the group doesn’t have permission from the Bend Parks and Recreation District to put the ornaments up, but said it’s a “Bend thing.” He compared it to the Fourth of July Freedom Ride, where people seem to ignore the laws but generally have a good time.

“I’m not here with the intention of breaking laws and ruffling feathers,” he said. “I just thought it would be a fun thing to do and it would bring a lot of people in together.”

Cappy also said the group always goes back to the trails in January to take all the decorations down. He said they also pick up whatever other trash is in the area.

Cappy said he contacted Parks and Rec to request a permit to put the decorations back up. NewsChannel 21 also asked the agency what the rules on such issues are. We were told the park district as of now does not have a permit that would cover Cappy’s request to place decorations along the trails. A spokesperson said the agency is gathering information before making a decision.

Do you think it’s okay to decorate public trails with Christmas decorations? It’s the topic of our new KTVZ.COM Poll. Find it halfway down the right side of our home page.

Article Topic Follows: News

Jump to comments ↓

KTVZ News Team


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content