Any hungry Forsyth County residents who orders pizza from Papa John’s this holiday season are in for a festive surprise if their delivery driver is Debra Densmore-Jones.
The north Forsyth resident who has been driving for the company for a little more than a year decked her minivan out with Christmas decorations, complete with Santa riding shotgun, window paint, a four-foot Christmas tree with garland and more than 500 colored lights on the roof and even a reindeer riding a toy car on the hood.
“He sings ‘Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer,’ and I’m Grandma, so...,” Densmore-Jones said.
The grandma-of-10 and great-grandma-of-three started by decorating her vehicle for Halloween, though that was just a strip of orange lights on one side and a strip of purple on the other.
“I’ve already got people asking, ‘What are you doing for Valentine’s Day?’” she said. “It’s been a lot of fun.”
It’s a sight that is hard to miss, and Densmore-Jones said people certainly haven’t been.
“I get people popping out of sun roofs, and one lady had her camera out the window trying to take pictures,” she said. “Of course, any teens having a party, everyone’s gotta come out and get their pictures.”
She said she thought of the idea on her own and got a friend to help install the tree on the roof, which people often ask her how it stays on.
“It’s chicken wire,” she said.
For $5, she found a pre-made tree made out of coated wire at a thrift store, restrung it with colored lights, “put the garland on and slapped it on there.”
“I didn’t expect quite the response I got, though. People in Cumming are special. They really are. They’re still home folk. And it makes a big difference,” she said. “It’s totally different than it is anywhere else in Atlanta. I’m a Cobb County girl. You won’t see anything like this in
Cobb County, and if you did people would look at you and grumble.”
Densmore-Jones has lived in Forsyth for four or five years. She used to work as the floral manager at the Ingles on Bethelview Road and drove for Papa John’s part-time.
“I got a little tired of working that 10-hour day,” she said.
She said she enjoys delivering pizza because she gets to meet and talk to people.
“It helps keep the blues away maybe for someone. For me, as well,” she said. “More than anything it just makes people smile. And I like that.”