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It’s the Holiday Season: Tree lighting, stories kick off the Christmas season

By Staff | Dec 1, 2017

Journal photo by Ron Agnir The Grinch steals the Shepherdstown Christmas Tree as Mrs. Claus reads aloud the Dr. Seuss Class story “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” in front of McMurran Hall at the Shepherdstown Tree Lighting event last Friday night.

‘All the Whos down in Whoville’ came out last Friday evening to enjoy the start to the Christmas season as hundreds gathered outside McMurran Hall for the annual reading of “The Night Before Christmas” and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” as well as the lighting of the town’s Christmas tree.

Reading the traditional stories was Mrs. Claus, also known as Judy Shepherd, who helps organize the town’s start to the season each year. As she read, the Grinch acted out his story, along with a gathering of Whoville residents including Cindy Lou Who. The steps to McMurran Hall were packed with young faces in awe of the storytelling and anxious for the arrival of Jolly Old St. Nick.

Prior to Santa’s arrival, Mayor Jim Auxer took the opportunity to welcome all to Shepherdstown for the evening, expressing that the townspeople are a family who make the town what it is. Auxer thanked all who had help put the event together for the evening and heralded in the guest of honor as Santa arrived with a little help from the Shepherdstown Volunteer Fire Department. As he climbed down from his perch atop the fire truck, Santa was swarmed with hugs from the little ones. He quickly made his way inside McMurran Hall where he spent the evening welcoming each child, hearing their wish for Christmas and providing them with a treat as they went on their way.

A warming bonfire was a gathering place along the street just outside McMurran Hall. Members of the Shepherdstown Fire Department monitored the fire. While the weather cooperated with perfect temperatures – not too cold but not too hot – many still took the opportunity to gather around the fire to share greetings.

Across the way, hot chocolate and cookies were available from members of Jefferson High School’s Key Club who were working in conjunction with the Shepherdstown Kiwanis Club who offered a chili and cornbread supper opportunity in the ballroom of the Community Club.

For a complete Christmas in Shepherdstown schedule, visit http://bit.ly/2zAVLl8.