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Costa Mesa gets its Charlie Brown Christmas

December 14, 2011 |  9:58 am

Costa Mesa saves the Snoopy House decorations
One of Costa Mesa's most treasured holiday traditions continued Tuesday night despite a bank foreclosure that threw the elaborate "Snoopy House" Christmas decorations in doubt.

Two weeks ago, Wells Fargo permanently locked Linda and Jim Jordan out of their home on Santa Ana Avenue, which was the site of a popular holiday display.

When the family said they wouldn't be able to reprise their Charlie Brown house, the community mobilized with a "Save the Snoopy House" Facebook page and Twitter account. One person even set up a tent on the home's front lawn, a mini Occupy the Snoopy House movement. Even a nearby Chick-fil-A restaurant in Santa Ana offered to set up the "Peanuts" gang outside, the Daily Pilot reported.

But Costa Mesa City Hall agreed to take over the display and, on Tuesday, the Jordans helped put the final touches on the Peanuts-themed decorations outside City Hall.

"I just couldn't stop crying," Linda Jordan said. "It's not relief. I'm happy. I'm sad at the same time."

Community volunteers helped build the labor-intensive setup in a single weekend and the Jordans got to celebrate Christmas with their characters and the community again.

"This has been right out of a Frank Capra movie and I'm in 'It's a Wonderful Life,'" Jim Jordan said.

It's a tradition Costa Mesa families have come to count on for generations. When news spread that the Snoopy House wasn't going to be around, it hurt.

"I didn't show it, but I was very sad," said 9-year-old Cael McCarthy Kennedy.

As Cael walked away to look at Woodstock slipping down a slide, his mother, Anna Kennedy, was more candid.

"He cried."

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-- Joseph Serna, Times Community News

Photo: Jim Jordan kisses his wife, Linda, as they celebrate their "Snoopy House" on display during the official lighting ceremony at Costa Mesa City Hall Tuesday night. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times

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