Mt. Battie's Christmas star shines on
Camden — For decades, a star has shone from the top of Mt. Battie, thanks to Camden Lions Club. The star is traditionally lit Thanksgiving night and continues to shine through New Year's Day.
The tradition of the star began in the mid-1960s, when Bill Brawn, then owner of French & Brawn Market Place and a member of the Camden Lions Club, decided to place a Christmas star on the Mechanic Street side of the store, according to information provided by the Lions.
Camden Town Historian Barbara Dyer previously said the first star was 12-feet high, had a wooden frame and glowed with 100 25-watt bulbs. However, since the star was only visible to those passing south on Route 1, it was suggested by downtown merchants to display the star from the stone tower on Mt. Battie, she said.
"The star was first seen Sunday evening and caused some consternation from citizens who phoned the police and fire department about the strange glow in the sky. Some thought it was a fire on the mountain or a flying saucer," reads an article in the Dec. 8, 1966, edition of The Camden Herald.
Shortly after publication of that article, the Lions Club took over and Raymond Drinkwater built a much larger star, made of steel, with more lights. A third star was built in the 1990s, which is also metal and holds 92 bulbs of 15-watts each, according to Dyer.