Grinch destroys beloved gnome homes in Perry County

DUNCANNON, PERRY COUNTY, Pa. -- Neighbors in one Perry County community say a Grinch stole some magic right before the holidays.

A person(s) smashed beloved decorations at a park in Duncannon, and neighbors want to make sure it never happens again.

Every gnome once had a home at Noye Park on South Market Street all thanks to the kindness and woodworking skills of Steve Hoke.

"I was a counselor in a prison for 35 years, and with that, came a little stress, and I needed to find a reason to find a reason to get rid of that stress," said Hoke.

Hoke created a small village of tiny garden friends at the park.

"There supposed to be whimsical, magical, to help kids' imaginations work," explained Hoke.

Someone stole that magic just days before Christmas.

"I'm down at Noye Park. We found out about an hour ago that all of our gnome homes.... Well, here is what's left of them. Can you see that?" asked Lisa Landis of Duncannon.

Landis shared a video online after someone ruined some of the decorations.

"It's not so much what it means to me. It is what it means to a lot of little kids in our community. The gnomes are magic, and it is one of those things they love coming down here to this park. The entire kindergarten class at our local elementary school, they love coming down here," explained Landis.

Landis' daughter Ella loves the decorations too.

"There is disappointment. There is sadness. There is anger," she said.

Now, Landis says, there is also a need to make sure this or any other crime doesn't happen at the park again.

She created a GoFundMe to buy trail cameras for the park.

"Right now, every bit helps. We are going to keep this effort going through the holidays... hope we can get some Christmas magic underway," said Landis.

Hoke says there are no plans to rehome the gnomes... just to rebuild.

He hopes the person who did this comes forward and helps clean up the mess they made.

"It is supposed to be the season of giving not of destroying, but we would even forgive the people who did this, but we need some help, we need to let them know we're looking for them, and we would be happy to work with them on this," explained Hoke.

The gnomes have been homeless once before.

Hoke built homes for gnomes at Little Buffalo State Park -- his creations went viral online.

Read more about the gnome's eviction from the park then, here.

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