Town getting out the holly for the holidays

November 07, 2005|by DAVE McMILLION

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. - It's a Christmas celebration that's eagerly anticipated by the folks in Shepherdstown.

And with everything from roasted chestnuts and live music to bonfires and a holiday marketplace to enjoy, it's no wonder.

The annual Christmas in Shepherdstown celebration starts in town the day after Thanksgiving and extends until Dec. 4.

The year's event includes all the usual trappings such as a Christmas tree-lighting ceremony, dinners and other events.

It's a celebration that gives the town a unique, old-time Christmas feel, according to town residents.

On Friday, Nov. 25 at 7 p.m., Mayor Peter Wilson will welcome town residents and light the town Christmas tree in front of McMurran Hall along German Street, said Lynn Wilson, who has been working on plans for the event.

A town crier will be criss-crossing town making announcements and people usually shout holiday greetings from windows in town, Wilson said.


A skit also accompanies the Christmas tree-lighting, said Wilson, who is the mayor's wife.

"It's very festive," she said.

Roasted chestnuts will be offered to visitors in town that day and at 5 p.m., there will be a Kiwanis chili and cornbread supper with baked goods at the War Memorial Building on German Street.

Arnold Smith will offer holiday music starting at 6:30 p.m. in front of the Shepherdstown Public Library, a bonfire will be held between 5 and 7 p.m. on King Street, and local photographer Hali Taylor will begin showing her portraits at 6 p.m. at the Entler Hotel.

Throughout the year in Shepherdstown, Taylor shoots photographs of town residents and displays them at the Entler Hotel during Christmas in Shepherdstown, Lynn Wilson said.

This year's exhibit extends through Dec. 1.

Need some items to make the house special during the holidays?

A stop by the Holiday Marketplace may be just what you need. The market offers holiday greens, handcrafted gifts and baked goods.

The market will be held on the first floor of the War Memorial Building on Nov. 26 and Dec. 3.

Organizers also will offer trolley bus tours of historic Shepherdstown, Wilson said. Not only will visitors be trollied past interesting points in town, but the trolley bus tours will offer visitors a good way to get around town during the busy period, she said.

Event organizers are leasing the trolley buses from a company in Martinsburg, Wilson said.

The Christmas parade will be at 11 a.m. on Dec. 3 on German Street and the celebration culminates on Dec. 4 with events such as a free Christmas dinner and open house with Santa Claus at the Shepherdstown Fire Department.

The celebration comes together thanks to many volunteers and contributions, Wilson said. Money for the event comes from sources such as the state Budget Digest and local banks, Wilson said.

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