Area residents will not be gathering around the old pine tree in front of the courthouse this year for the annual downtown Christmas tree lighting program, which has traditionally taken place on the courthouse lawn.
This year's program will be held at the Harlan Center.
Program coordinator Karen Phillips said that there is not enough time for her to decorate three trees at the center and one at the courthouse.
"When we did decorate the pine tree at the courthouse we couldn't get electricity out there to keep it lit, because people would keep stealing the extension cords," Phillips said.
Some local merchants are not happy about the change, noting it's been a tradition for businesses around the downtown area to stay open late on the day of the program and serve refreshments and food to the people who gather at the courthouse.
Rachel Parsons, of The Bank of Harlan, said that Ed Parsons, bank president, told employees that the bank will not stay open this year since the tree lighting has been moved to the other end of town.
Abraham's Music will be open late that day.
Other downtown business owners said that they have mixed emotions about the program being moved across town and would decide as the event gets closer whether or not to stay open.
According to Phillips, she has been taking care of organizing the program for the last seven years. She said the job fell into her lap since the downtown revitalization program doesn't exist anymore.
Phillips said several local school and community choirs are scheduled to perform at the program.