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Bellefonte Victorian Christmas ‘takes you back in time’

Characters from the Dickens Troupe sing carols during high tea at the Reynolds Mansion during the 2016 Bellefonte Victorian Christmas.
Characters from the Dickens Troupe sing carols during high tea at the Reynolds Mansion during the 2016 Bellefonte Victorian Christmas. Centre Daily Times, file

For three days in December, Bellefonte Victorian Christmas opens a window to the past.

Charles Dickens’ characters like Ebenezer Scrooge stroll the streets, and horse-drawn carriages slow the busy pace of everyday life.

“It kind of takes you back in time,” said Sally Houser, Bellefonte Victorian Christmas co-chairwoman.

It’s a holiday tradition that started 36 years ago, she said.

Bellefonte is a Victorian town with a lot of history and beautiful architecture, Houser said. At Christmastime, it’s even more beautiful.

Dec. 8-10 are jam-packed full of activities for every age.

Enjoy concerts, arts and crafts, story times, high tea and much more. (A full list of events is available online.)

New this year is the Bellefonte Women’s Club History on Wheels Guided Tour — see the architecture of Bellefonte, including a visit to two historic homes, and maybe you’ll even be stopped along the way by residents from the past who will tell you their stories.

Also, note that the Gaslight Gala, normally on a Thursday night, will take place on Dec. 9 to allow out-of-town visitors to attend.

Houser said she “just love(s) the whole event. It’s hard to describe because people dress in Victorian period dress. There’s singing in the streets … It’s just a fun, fun event.”

And if you’ve been a longtime fan of Bellefonte Victorian Christmas, or you visit for the first time this year and fall in love, consider carrying on the tradition as a chairperson for the event.

The current team has been organizing it for a while, and they’re ready to pass on the torch.

Sarah Rafacz: 814-231-4619, @SarahRafacz

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