TROY – Hot dogs roasting on an open fire. Sunshine warming everyone. Lots of gifts wrapped and ready to put under the tree. A Live Nativity that told the real reason to celebrate this wondrous holiday season.
This sums up Christmas in the Village, which took place Sunday at the Farm Museum and Heritage Village in Troy.
Two cook fires welcomed visitors to this free admission event. The fires were for roasting hot dogs on sticks — old fashioned outdoor cooking.
“I love hot dogs,” said Tristan, who was roasting them at the fire with his family. “And these are the best!”
As visitors strolled along the sidewalk through the village, Dobbins the horse, hitched to a sleigh, gave a photo opportunity to create a nice family Christmas card.
There were some pretty “crafty” things going on inside the print shop throughout the day. Lots of glue, glitter and ribbon helped volunteers as they instructed children with their parents to make beautiful ornaments.
Continuing on, there were vendors selling jewelry, artwork and wooden and creative crafts. Even some young vendors had something special to offer – reindeer food – at their table, “Cliff Girls Creations.” Tinleigh Cliff and her sisters made up baggies filled with oatmeal, glitter, belief and love. The idea is to spread it on the ground.
“The reindeer will come to your house,” said Tinleigh.
As visitors continued to stroll, Jacob Gilpin, a sophomore at Troy High School, entertained with his guitar and beautiful Classic Country Western voice on the front porch of the Mitchell House.
“The real thing” is how Dan Wagner described Jacob’s variety of songs.
Further along, just before the Carriage House, children were anxious to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus.
“I think the kids enjoy this,” said Santa. “I love watching the little kids’ faces light up.”
“At first a little boy didn’t want anything to do with me,” added Santa. “Next thing I knew he was sitting on my lap.”
After receiving candy canes from Santa’s helper, families continued along the sidewalk passing tables full of baked goods for sale. But those tables didn’t stay full for very long. The prices were reasonable and the variety was enormous. And it was all to benefit the Bradford County Heritage Association.
Of course visitors could sample some of those baked goods with a free cookie and hot drink – a choice of hot chocolate, tea or coffee.
Walking past the baked goods, there were over 30 gift baskets wrapped for purchase, ready to put under the Christmas tree. There were varieties of gifts for men, women, children and even pets.
The end of the line brought visitors into the Carriage House to see the “Festival of Trees” that were set up by non-profit organizations. There were some unusual ones such as the tree made from a ladder. The Allen F. Pierce Free Library in Troy set up boxes of give-away books along with their tree and a free drawing to win their tree.
Throughout the day there were scheduled events, starting with the Live Nativity done by Pastor Josh Yorks and members of his family and the congregation of the Holy Trinity Church in Troy.
Melody Lewis read her favorite Christmas story on the front porch of the Inn. This beautiful story told the true meaning of Christmas. She also sang some Christmas carols in foreign languages.
The children enjoyed being in the one room schoolhouse to hear Mrs. Claus read some Christmas stories to them.
And finally the Patchwork Gen2 Puppets performed “It’s a Wonder-Full Life” created by Pam Andrews and Luke Gambill and adapted for puppetry by Patchwork Gen 2. As several of their puppets said, “Jesus is the reason for the season.”
It wasn’t too hot and it wasn’t too cold. It was a perfect day for a family outing to stroll through Christmas in the Village.
“It was good to see grandparents bring their grandchildren to events like this,” said volunteer Walt Wittie, who dons a red suit every year at this time. “It really instills family values.”
At story time, when Mrs. Claus asked the group of children what their favorite activities were, the answers she got were:
“The hot dogs; crafts; Santa Claus; the hot chocolate.”
And of course one little boy said, “And the cookies.”