Brightly colored bows and good cheer on boulevard a Larchmont tradition

| November 29, 2018 | 0 Comments

BRIGHT RED ribbons tied in a corsage style by Dr. Tim Gogan line Larchmont Boulevard each holiday season.

Every year around Thanksgiving, cheerful red bows magically appear on the trees lining Larchmont Boulevard. They dress up the street for the holidays, making it ready for the Larchmont Boulevard Association’s annual Holiday Open House on “Small Business Saturday,” which was Nov. 24 this year. The open house featured Santa Claus arriving on a fire truck.

This year, when the red bows began showing up after Halloween, I wondered, “Where do the pretty red bows come from each holiday season?”

“Santa’s elves”

So, who is behind the festive red bows? That would be Dr. Timothy Gogan, who has had his dental practice on Larchmont Boulevard since 1976.

Gogan began affixing decorations only to the trees south of Beverly Boulevard. Since it was one long block, he was able to complete the job in one morning before breakfast. At the time, there were only two places to get something to eat on Larchmont, one being Café Chapeau, now the location of Erin McKenna’s Bakery.

Gogan grew up knowing how to tie a corsage bow. His parents had a flower shop and also did floral arrangements for Lorimar Productions for the “Dallas” and “Falcon Crest” sets when the shows had weddings. In fact, between the ages of 9 and 14, Gogan created and sold his own Christmas swag from leftover materials to make extra money.

By the time he had the idea of decorating Larchmont Boulevard for the Christmas season, Gogan was practiced in tying the ubiquitous corsage bow; he just needed to make them giant-sized, from much wider ribbon. Over the years, he has taught his technique to his kids and grandkids, all of whom have helped him.

About five years ago, Gogan began tying bows on the boulevard trees all the way up to Melrose Avenue. He has “elves” or helpers each year to get the street covered, and it takes longer than one morning. It typically means getting up at 2 a.m. to begin work at 4 a.m., placing bows between First and Beverly, before moving north to the rest of the street.

Gogan special orders 48 rolls of ribbon early in the year, and he ties about six bows a night to have them all ready to install by November. He wears gloves to tie the 130 bows to protect his hands while working on the project.

Gogan also has included wreath-making (and freshening) in his repertoire of holiday embellishment, and he also decorates several homes for the holidays.

Taking down the bows each year before New Year’s can get a little hairy, he says, because of the spiders and debris that get lodged in the bows. But he still enjoys the process.

So, when you see the festive red bows while you’re strolling down the boulevard during the holidays, you know whom to thank.

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Category: People

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