Press-Republican

X_'Tis the season

December 6, 2011

Rudolph's bright nose guides cars at night

ATHENS, Ala. — Officials say somebody added a little holiday spirit to the deer-crossing signs hereabout: red reflectors on the deer silhouette’s nose.

And, they assured, If you ever saw one, you would even say it glows.

The culprits' identity is a Christmas season mystery that has piqued the curiosity — and tickled the funny bones — of local residents.

Authorities responded with a spontaneous but quickly stifled chuckle when confronted with the question: Is turning a deer on a traffic sign into Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer a crime?

"You know, that right there is not something I ever thought I’d be asked about," said Police Capt. Floyd Johnson.

Mayor Ronnie Marks said the red noses didn't pose a safety risk and thought they were "pretty neat."

"However," he added, "you can’t mess with the signs like that, or anything dealing with public safety. So we’ll have to deal with them" if the culprits are ever identified.

Whether the mystery is solved, one thing is sure: This is another case in which Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer will go down in history.

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Details for this story were provided by the Athens, Ala., News Courier.

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X_'Tis the season