15th Annual Lights of Hope Event Held in Cheshire

Cheshire’s Lights of Hope luminary event continues to grow, helping more people in their community.

Luminaries illuminated one mile of Route 10 and half of the streets in the town on Saturday night.

The Lights of Hope fundraiser started small in one Cheshire neighborhood 15 years ago, but after the Petit family home invasion tragedy it became a town-wide event.

More than 100 volunteers help the event come to light each year. On Saturday morning, lots of high school students set up some of the 50,000 luminaries that were expected to be sold this year.

“We also did the luminaries at my house and we just want to see the whole town lit up and we’re just so glad so many people are doing it,” said Bob Murdy of Cheshire.

That money will benefit Cheshire Community Food Pantry and Cheshire Youth and Social Services, the Petit Family Foundation and two scholarships for high schools seniors invested in volunteer work.

“I mean the symbolism of light in the darkness for hope is so important in this day and age. We have so many people out there who need help,” said Cheshire’s Lights of Hope President Don Walsh.

“It is really awesome to see the kids in the high school and at a young age really understand how good it is volunteering and to give back to the community,” said Cheshire High School senior Brendan Grove.

“As we were driving earlier today we saw high school kids helping set it up and you could just tell that it was a community event which is amazing,” said Shannon Coviello of Prospect.

Since 2005, the community has pitched in to help the nonprofit raise more than $915,000 for local charities.

“I think it’s really special and it’s one of the reasons why we moved to Cheshire, not this event, but just because of the good community here. It’s a really strong community,” said Janine Murdy of Cheshire.

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