Merry Christmas, Fidalgo Island. It’s one for the record books, to be sure.

Before you write off 2020 as a miserable year, we would like to note that despite the hardships of the pandemic, divisive politics and general unrest across the nation, there are so many examples of goodwill right here at home during the holidays.

Note today’s story on page 2 where community members flooded the Cypress Assisted Living with holiday decor and more after an employee there, concerned about the people he serves, sent out a public request.

Note last week’s story about resident Jason Chambers, who took it upon himself to organize a food drive and several free drive-thru distribution events for anyone who needed food.

Note today’s front-page story about community members who make a point of bedazzling their homes with lights for their neighbors and others to enjoy. Most of us realize that the bedazzling takes more than a snap of the fingers to accomplish. So, thank you to them for their efforts.

Note the efforts of the Anacortes Lutheran Church to make sure free Christmas dinners will be available to those in need despite the pandemic.

Then there is Wally Garland, who works with American Legion Post 13 to help serve military veterans, many of whom are elderly or suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Many of these veterans are alone and especially isolated during the pandemic. Garland took some of them stockings full of sweets. He gets emotional just thinking about what he can’t do to help them all, particularly now, but members of this community have already stepped up to help, and more will surely follow.

When the local Kiwanis clubs were unable this year to hold their annual after-Christmas tree pickup event, Anacortes Boy Scout Troop 911 picked it up.

That’s just a handful instances that made the newspaper. There have been so many more, like the kind donation of Christmas trees to Island Hospital, food donations set up through our grocery stores and several angel trees to help ensure local children get gifts.

Other gestures are as simple as church members making weekly calls to check in on isolated elderly members who they don’t see in person these days due to the pandemic lockdown.

Some good even takes place on social media. The FREE FREE FREE Anacortes Facebook page features any variety of items people are willing to give to each other, ranging from food to furniture. These days, items such as Christmas wrapping paper, bows and toys pop up frequently.

Many people in this community are looking out for each other. That’s something to celebrate.

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