We hope you’ll plan to join us on Sunday, December 3rd, for the annual Christmas in Bethel celebration. Free admission.
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FOOD
• Fest Hall Restaurant – Serving smorgasbord from 11am to 2pm (turkey and dressing, smoked sausage, more). Enjoy cookies and drinking custard with your meal, or purchase separately. Also serving soup and sandwiches throughout the day.
• Food Stand – Chili, Candied Pecans, Hot Cocoa and Cider, Coffee, and other Christmas Goodies from 11am to 4pm.
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VENDORS IN THE COLONY BARN
We’ll be heating the Barn, so it should be comfortable no matter what the weather!
• Santa arrives at noon. Along with traditional “Black Santa” they will greet the children and hand out treats.
• Live music including the Bethel Christian Church Bell Choir, HCA Band
• Candy Cane Hunt for Kids
• Shopping: Vendors in the Colony Barn, plus other shops in town including Decades Olde, Bethel Bakery, Bethel Candy Kitchen, and Schnickschnack, 11am to 4:30pm
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COLONY HOME TOUR & MUSEUM
• Purchase $10 tickets at the Gift Shop beginning at 11:00am for a guided tour of several historic Colony homes at 1:30pm—Elim (Keil’s home), Bair Haus (the first home built in Bethel), and Miller (the last home built)
• The Colony Museum will be open for the event; free admission.
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VESPER SERVICE & CANDLELIGHT WALK
• Vespers – 5pm at the United Methodist Church, followed by a candlelight walk to the Historic Bandstand for the official lighting of Bethel.
• Soup & Sandwiches at the Fest Hall ($5) following the lighting
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During the communal years, colonists observed many “fete” days such as Easter, Christmas, New Years, harvest feasts, Independence Day and others with music, singing, dancing and visiting. On these occasions tables were loaded with all the good things the German kitchen and cellar could offer. Everyone was welcome and many came. At Christmas time there were two large decorated trees in the church. The celebration began at four o’clock in the morning at the church with singing and band music and then a sermon, after which all the children were given candy, apples, cakes and cookies. The two trees were left until New Year’s when the gifts were given to everyone.
These days the festivities don’t start at 4am, but there will be activities for children and adults alike. Be sure to follow this page for details as they are posted.
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