SIDNEY — Holidays are a time for nostalgia, and three local organizations have planned programs for Dec. 2 that will take participants back to Christmas of Yesteryear.
All three have named their events, Christmas of Yesteryear. They include crafts, demonstrations and exhibits at the Ross Historical Center; a ballet performance, which also runs Dec. 3, by the Sidney Dance Company; and carriage rides by Sidney Alive!
Two others have activities that day that are not so titled, but will also provide heaping helpings of holiday spirit. The Amos Memorial Public Library will host an open house and the First Presbyterian Church will present a Christmas opera.
Ross Historical Center
The Shelby County Historical Society will welcome people to the Ross Historical Center, 201 N. Main Ave., for the 18th annual event.
“Christmas of Yesteryear has been one of the longest-running children’s programs,” said SCHS Director Tilda Phlipot. “It started in 2000, the first year the Ross Center was open. Last year, more than 900 people attended. It’s a delight for children of all ages.”
From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., children and their families can decorate gingerbread houses made with graham crackers, make ornaments and pieces of pottery, watch pottery and woodcarving demonstrations, see chestnuts roasting over an open fire and pop corn for tree trimming. There will be an exhibit of Christmas trees decorated by area students and a model train display. Admission is free.
Santa will be in attendance and optional professional photos with him, to be taken by Erin Pence, will cost $5.
Woodcarving will be demonstrated by the Shelby County Woodcarvers. Richard Bailey, of Fort Loramie, will exhibit a collection of model trains. The Reck family, of Piqua, makes possible the pottery crafts.
Students at FCCLA of Sidney High School and Holy Angels Catholic School and a members of a Girl Scout troop have decorated trees that will be exhibited.
“We started getting ready two weeks ago,” Phlipot said. “Teachers who are members of Delta Kappa Gamma assembled more than 300 (graham cracker) houses.”
When the last child has left the historic house, clean-up takes up to two days.
“Icing can be everywhere,” Phlipot laughed.
Sidney Dance Company
The Sidney Dance Company will perform “Christmas of Yesteryear,” Dec. 2 and Dec. 3 at 2 p.m. in the Cameo Theatre, 304 S. West Ave.
Tickets cost $8 for adults, $4 for children, and are available before Dec. 1 at Sharon’s School of Dance, 104 E. Poplar St. They will also be available at the door.
Dancers will perform to recordings of popular holiday music. The production has been directed and choreographed by Molly McFarland and Sharon Eikenberry.
Appearing in “Somewhere in My Memory” by John Williams and “We Need a Little Christmas” by Mac Huff and Jerry Herman will be Tiffany Behr, Faith Clinton, Kiris Fox, Kate Gothberg, Ella Gover, Mariana Kellner, McKensie Osborne, Cadence Patterson, Reagan Paulus, Aliya Sharp, Lizzy Shaw, Rylen Abbott, Anika Arcikauskas, Maggie Bensman, Brianna Brewer, Kloie Fleming, Mallory Godwin, Kara Kellner, Emma Keykens, Katie Kogge, Samantha Quinlisk, Logan Shaw, Emily Short, Zoee Steele, Leah Zimmerman and Anthony Kellner.
The same group, except for Anthony Kellner, will dance to “The Twelve Days of Christmas” as performed by John Denver and the Muppets.
Dancing to “Waltz of the Snowflakes” by Tchaikovsky will be Mariana Kellner, Faith Clinton, Cadence Patterson, Reagan Paulus, Rylen Abbott, Anika Arcikauskas, Maggie Bensman, Brianna Brewer, Kloie Fleming, Mallory Godwin, Kara Kellner, Emma Keykens, Katie Kogge, Samantha Quinlisk, Logan Shaw, Emily Short, Zoee Steele, Leah Zimmerman, Madelyn Reed, Nora Bates, Aurora Smith, Emily McDonald and Eosalina Sherman.
Tchaikovsky’s “Candy Canes” will feature Rylen Abbott, Anika Arcikauskas, Maggie Bensman, Kloie Fleming, Emma Keykens and Logan Shaw. The composer’s famous “Sugar Plum Fairy” will be danced by Kate Gothberg, Dec. 2, and by Aliya Sharp, Dec. 3.
Appearing in the Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s “Promises to Keep” will be Brianna Brewer, Mallory Godwin, Kara Kellner, Katie Kogge, Samantha Quinlisk, Emily Short, Zoee Steele and Leah Zimmerman.
Tiffany Behr, Faith Clinton, Kiris Fox, Kate Gothberg, Ella Gover, Mariana Kellner, McKensie Osborne, Cadence Patterson, Reagan Paulus, Aliya Sharp and Lizzy Shaw will perform to “Silent Night/O Holy Night” by Gabrielle Aapri.
Dancing to “Up on the Housetop” by Straight No Chaser will be Faith Clinton, Kiris Fox, Kate Gothberg, Ella Gover, Mariana Kellner, Reagan Paulus, Aliya Sharp, Lizzy Shaw, Maggie Bensman, Mallory Godwin, Kara Kellner, Katie Kogge, Samantha Quinlisk, Logan Shaw, Zoee Steele and Leah Zimmerman.
Faith Clinton, Kiris Fox, Kate Gothberg, Ella Gover, Mariana Kellner, McKensie Osborne, Cadence Patterson, Reagan Paulus, Aliya Sharp and Lizzy Shaw will close the program with a piece choreographed to “The Prayer” by Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli.
Eikenberry will appear as the grandmother and Mia McFarland will play the grandchild.
Sidney Alive’s Christmas of Yesteryear will offer horse-drawn carriage rides around the courtsquare in downtown Sidney from 2 to 4 p.m.
Riders can climb aboard the carriages along the north side of courtsquare. The rides are free.
“The annual Christmas of Yesteryear is a fantastic day,” said Sidney Alive! Executive Director Amy Breinich. “It’s a wonderful sight to see the excitement of the families as they experience all the fun.”
Amos Memorial Public Library
Live reindeer will be the attraction at a holiday open house from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Amos Memorial Public Library, 230 E. North St.
The animals will be on the lawn for an up-close look at who will be pulling Santa’s sleigh in a few weeks.
Inside the library, participants can enjoy live holiday music, make a Christmas craft or magic reindeer food, decorate cookies and meet Santa and Mrs. Claus.
Parents can take photos of their children with the Claus couple.
First Presbyterian Church
The touching one-act opera, “Amahl and the Night Visitors” will be performed by voice students of David Schneider at 7 p.m. in the First Presbyterian Church, 202 N. Miami Ave.
Admission is free; however, an offering will be collected to help with expenses.
“It’s not done very often,” said Schneider, of Lima, who has directed the production. “It’s an opera in English, and it’s very tuneful. It was originally done live on television in 1951, like they do the musicals live on TV today, so it’s made for a wider audience.”
He noted that he chose it to challenge his students.
“It’s very funny. It’s a good way to start off the holiday month,” he said. The story is of the first Christmas and the wise men who travel to see the Christ child.
Dana Geuy is the pianist.
The cast includes 26 local voice students, two from Lima and two from Wapakoneta. They are as follows: Emma Kyler as Amahl, Sara Gibson as mother, Steve Dietrich as Kaspar, Alex Rose as Melchior, Caleb Johnson as Balthazar, David Potts as the page.
In the Shepherds Chorus are Jenna Allen, Marcus Allen, Jenna Beremand, Dave Easton, Zaylee Finkenbine, Ryan Gibson, Abbey Goins, Robyn Gossard, Norene Holmes, Nitaya Johnson, Emily Jones, Savannah Koester, McKenzie Lange, Evan Large, Ayaka Machimura, Muriel Moore, Owen Moore, Paul Myers, Hailey New, McKenna O’Donnell, Shannon O’Donnell, Sheila Rowe, Haley Schattschneider, Caroline Scott, Annie Stemen, Sharon Wildermuth and Delaney Wilson.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4824.