December 27, 2011
Devin Richardson, left, teases fellow classmate Raymond Hesson, while Kendall Haught, as a narrator, checks over her lines before the play begins.
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Ever wondered why people put up Christmas lights? Well, just check with the elves that live at Payson Elementary School: They can tell you all about it. The riot of six- and seven-year-olds last week staged a time-honored tradition for elementary students and their families: the holiday play. And for the first time ever, they revealed the secret of Christmas lights as imagined by a teacher turned playwright. Marti Shipley, one of the nine PES first-grade teachers, wrote the play entitled “The Gleamers.” The size of the three classes participating inspired Shipley to write the play. “I was looking for a Christmas play that would be easy enough for our students to do and also include a large number of students. I had no success finding one I liked,” she said. So she wrote her own.