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Christmas festivities to continue

By Staff | Dec 2, 2011

Jani Harper, Collin and baby Cara pose with Santa at the Christmas in Shepherdstown launch last Friday evening. Crowds lined up outside of McMurran Hall to meet Santa at the annual Christmas in Shepherdstown event. (Chronicle photo by Kelly Cambrel)

Shepherdstown rung in the holiday season and 250th anniversary celebration last weekend at the traditional Christmas in Shepherdstown tree lighting event.

The event was marked by a speech from Mayor Jim Auxer as well as a visit form Santa Claus and a reading of Dr. Suess’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”

This year, Christmas in Shepherdstown was kicked off in conjunction with the 250th anniversary launch.

Prior to the tree lighting, Mayor Auxer delivered a speech officially calling in the 250th year of Shepherdstown’s incorporation.

“I think people were unfamiliar with the history of Shepherdstown…I gave some important dates,” Mayor Auxer said of the speech he gave on Nov. 25.

The 250 celebration will continue this weekend with an ice sculptor installation and demonstration, sponsored by Jefferson Security Bank, along with the annual Christmas parade and other activities.

Meredith Wait, chairperson for the 250 Committee and member of the Christmas in Shepherdstown Committee, said that so far the kickoff has been successful.

“It was a strong and wonderful way to start,” she said.

Cheryl Keyrouze, director of the Shepherdstown Visitors Center and member of the Christmas in Shepherdstown Committee, said that the town brimmed with people all weekend long.

“Saturday the town was jam-packed with people,” she said.

Keyrouze said that following months of preparation by volunteers, the parade this Saturday promises to be even more grand than usual.

“This coming weekend is going to be major… We really stepped it up this year,” she said.

Mayor Auxer said that he’s excited to begin celebrating the 250th year.

“I’m excited and really appreciative of the effort by the committee,” he said.

Wait, who echoed the mayor’s sentiments, said she’s “humbled” by the generosity Shepherdstown residents have shown in donating their time to help make the 250 launch and Christmas in Shepherdstown possible.

“It’s a little town with a big heart,” she said.

Mayor Auxer said the 250th anniversary is an opportunity to show off what’s special about Shepherdstown.

“We get to celebrate our love for this town, and others get to see it,” he said.