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Bank of cheer

December 21, 2011

Each year, Jeanette Ringley turns the Peoples Bank on “A” street into a winter wonderland.

Ringley, Peoples' business center manager, transforms the bank with her collection of Christmas decorations.

Wooden cutouts of Christmas carolers line the entrance walkway to a main lobby and banking area filled inch to inch with Christmas trees, snowmen, a life-size Santa and detailed holiday miniatures. Blue, green, red and white lights are draped across the ceiling and walls, shining on wreaths and a fully-decorated Christmas tree in the center of the room.
It’s a whole new holiday world — one Ringley says the customers enjoy.

“They look forward to it each year,” Ringley said, adding that she’s helped decorate the bank’s interior for the past 11 years.

Ringley is an avid Christmas collector and has gathered various holiday decorations for the past 35 years with her husband. She said she used to decorate multiple houses, but decided to focus on the bank when she joined the staff in 1997.

“I bring my personal decorations here and share them with my customers.

It brings them a lot of good cheer and we just created a little family atmosphere in our bank,” she said. “It grows each year and we try to always do something different.”

This year was special, Ringley said, because it marked Peoples' 100th year of service to the community.

Ringley said bank clerks and office members help decorate inside each year, taking time over the weekends sometimes just to put up ornaments, wreaths and lighting.

In the end, she said the decorations are all about the customers. She said in a busy world where everyone’s always “on the go,” the Christmas decorations help people slow down.

She said a customer lingered in the lobby last week, staring at the Christmas tree and not saying much. Ringley approached him.

“You need some help?” she asked.

“Nope, I’m just taking it all in,” the customer replied.

She welcomes area citizens to drop by and see the decorations.

“It gets them in the holiday spirit and they may leave here with ideas for how they can decorate their home,” she said. “I’ve always enjoyed Christmas and hopefully this helps other people to as well.”

To get a peek at the decorations, visit Peoples Bank at 420 West "A" St. in Newton.

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