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Pomp and Patrioism

Don Risher decorates the office at Belair ­Engineering like a July 4th float

You’d think it was Christmas and Don Risher of Belair Engineering in Upper Marlboro was Clark Griswold from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.
    From Memorial Day through summer, he fills his office with red, white and blue. “It’s very patriotic, with lots of Americana,” says Risher, who puts his heart into this decorative commemoration because of his time in the service and camaraderie with service men and women.
    Plus, he loves to decorate.     Come autumn, it’s falling leaves and harvest themes.     Come winter, snowmen.
    Come Valentine’s Day, he turns the office red and white to please his daughter, Lauren.
    Come St. Patrick Day’s, it’s Irish cheer. Come spring, monarch butterflies set the theme.
    Every season, Risher decorates his five-room office, even the bathroom, from top to bottom for the upcoming seasonal holiday.
    Each holiday, it takes Risher a little over a week to decorate, moving his props from storage.
    About 15 years ago, Risher decided spirited decoration would create an environment that made everyone happier.
    It isn’t part of Risher’s job as working head of this 55-year-old air-conditioning and heating company.
    “It’s purely for the fun of it,” he says of his seasonal labor. “It raises office spirit. The coworkers and the customers who come in dig it.”