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Weather perfect for Old Tyme Christmas kickoff

By Staff | Dec 7, 2018

More than 100 individuals gathered for the opening ceremony of Olde Tyme Christmas in Harpers Ferry. Photo by Toni Milbourne.

HARPERS FERRY — Friday evening offered relatively mild temperatures for the season and no raindrops, as Harpers Ferry kicked off the 48th Annual Old Tyme Christmas event. More than 100 individuals gathered for opening ceremonies in the tent set up on Shenandoah Street, where park service personnel were dressed in period costume and described Christmas celebrations in 1860.

Following descriptions of times of old and stories shared about Santa visiting the New York Herald in times of old, the crowd joined Rick Garland as he led the way to the Yule Log. Gathered around the burning log, the crowd joined in singing Christmas carols and learning the history of the Yule Log.

Visitors in town then traveled up High Street, climbing the steps to St. Peter’s Catholic Church for the lighting of the tree set up in the courtyard. A living nativity was on hand, and will be part of the Olde Tyme Christmas celebration over the next two weeks.

Shops were open and luminaria lined the streets, as visitors to the historic town welcomed in the tradition that has been in place for so many years. Many chose to take advantage of late evening hours to do a bit of shopping in the unique venues and to order a bite to eat in the various cafes and restaurants open for business.

The Olde Tyme Christmas experience will continue over the next weekend, offering workshops, entertainment and other opportunities to enjoy the historic town. A variety of historic presentations and other demonstrations will take place, including a candy-making demonstration and class. While attending these events, visitors should keep an eye out for Santa and Mrs. Claus, who will be making various walking tours around town.

Also coming to Harpers Ferry this weekend, the Friendship Fire Department will host their annual Christmas parade, beginning at the Jefferson County Visitor’s Center Saturday at 11:30 a.m.

Camp Wesley United Methodist Church on Washington Street is the venue for the town’s second annual Cookie Walk, where individuals can visit and box up homemade cookies to take home and enjoy. The walk, sponsored by Harpers Ferry Parks and Recreation, will begin at 11 a.m. and run until 2 p.m. or until cookies run out.

For complete details on all the Olde Tyme Christmas events, visit www.experienceharpersferry.com.