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FRIDAY FACTS

 

All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 1 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

On-going Onondaga County Events!

 

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The village of Skaneateles is home to Dickens Christmas each Saturday & Sunday thru December. Enjoy shopping, dining, etc. while Charles Dickens’ characters roam the streets & entertain visitors. For details, go to www.Skaneateles.com or call 685-0552.

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Onondaga Lake Park presents its annual holiday light spectacular Lights on the Lake evenings thru January 6, 2013. Call 453-6712 or go to www.LightsOnTheLake.com.

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Everson Museum of Art is featuring the following exhibit Prophecy – Peter B. Jones running through January 2013. For details call 474-6064 or check the website at www.Everson.org.

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CNY Regional Farmers Market is open from 7am to 2pm each Saturday & Sunday (flea market); Market Common shops open daily. Call 422-8647 for information.

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The Onondaga Historical Association Museum is currently featuring the exhibits Transforming Syracuse’s Lakefront: 25th Anniversary of a Bold Vision 1987-2011, Manifest Destiny and the American West and Last House, Sight Unseen: Stereographs from the OHA Collection, 1850 – 1930, Syracuse Cultural Workers 100@30& Toys from the Collection For details, call 428-1864 or go to www.CNYHistory.org.

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Highland Forest County Park offers horseback riding each weekend & a wonderful open house on Saturday, Nov. 17th. Call 289-3775 or www.OnondagaCountyParks.com.

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IMAX Theater at the MOST is featuring Polar Express, Born to be Wild, & Tornado Alley. Check out their latest exhibit Ice Age: Mammoths & More. For details, call 425-9068 or www.most.org.

 

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Enjoy animal enrichment activities and demonstrations at the Rosamond Gifford Zoo. Go to their website (www.RosamondGiffordZoo.org) or call 435-8511 for details.

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Syracuse Crunch Hockey is back with great slammin’ action at the War Memorial at Oncenter! Call 435-2121 or go to their website at www.SyracuseCrunch.com for details.

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Onondaga Community College is featuring a new exhibit Arts Across Campus Exhibit: Whitney Windows Project by Mike Barletta& Onondaga Faculty Art Exhibit. For details, call 498-2622 or check out their website at www.sunyocc.edu.

 

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Community Folk Art Center featuring the exhibit TONY: 2012 as well as the One Million Bones Workshop. Call the Community Folk Art Center at 442-2230 or on the website at www.CommunityFolkArtCenter.org.

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So much to do at Beaver Lake Nature Center! Enjoy many fantastic seasonal programs – for details, call 638-2519 or visit www.OnondagaCountyParks.com.

 

FRIDAY FACTS

 

All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 2 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Continuing thru 11/30/2012

Event:

 

“Local Color: and Then Some”, Art Exhibit by David Hicock

 

Location: Robert P. Kinchen Central Library, 447 S. Salina St, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-435-1900

Continuing thru 12/24/2012

Event:

 

Art Mart 2012

 

Location: Atrium at City Hall Commons, 201 E. Washington St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-243-6359 or 637-6562

Continuing thru 2/9/2013

Event:

 

Exhibit: Ecoarttech – wilderness 24/7

 

Location: The Warehouse Gallery, 350 W. Fayette Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-443-6410

Continuing thru 1/5/2013

Event:

 

The Art of Ronni-Leigh and Stonehorse Goeman

 

Location: Dalton’s American Decorative Arts, 1931 James Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-463-1568

Continuing thru 12/30/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse Stage presents Irving Berlin’s White Christmas

 

Location: Syracuse Stage, 820 E. Genesee St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-443-3275

Continuing thru 1/6/2013

Event:

 

27th Annual Gingerbread Gallery

 

Location: Erie Canal Museum, 318 Erie Boulevard East, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-471-0593 x15

Continuing thru 12/16/2012

Event:

 

Play: Always … Patsy Cline

 

Location: Empire Expo Center/NYS Fairgrounds, 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-479-SHOW (7469)

Continuing thru 3/11/2013

Event:

 

Ice Skating in Clinton Square

 

Location: Clinton Square, W. Genesee and S. Clinton Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-423-0129

 

FRIDAY FACTS All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 3 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Continuing thru 12/9/2012

Event:

 

Play: Wicked. The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz

 

Location: Landmark Theatre, 362 S. Salina St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-475-7980

Starts: 11/29/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

Play: Hairspray

 

Location: Red House Arts Center, 201 S. West Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-425-0405

Starts: 11/30/2012 Ends: 11/30/2012

Event:

 

BREW & VIEW – Blues Brothers and Animal House – 35mm Double Feature

 

Location: Palace Theater, 2384 James St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-436-4723

Starts: 11/30/2012 Ends: 11/30/2012

Event:

 

Friday Night Music Series featuring Donna Colton

 

Location: bc Restaurant in Armory Square, 247 West Fayette Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-701-0636

Starts: 11/30/2012 Ends: 12/1/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse City Ballet presents The Nutcracker

 

Location: Mulroy Civic Center at Oncenter, 800 S. State St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-487-4879

Starts: 11/30/2012 Ends: 12/2/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse Holiday Crafts Spectacular

 

Location: Empire Expo Center/NYS Fairgrounds, 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-487-7711

Starts: 11/30/2012 Ends: 12/9/2012

Event:

 

Holiday Festival of Trees

 

Location: Everson Museum, 401 Harrison St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-439-1105

Starts: 11/30/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

Open Hand Theater & Salt City Productions presents “Amahl and the Night Visitors”

 

Location: First English Lutheran Church, 501 James St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-476-0466

 

FRIDAY FACTS All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 4 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/1/2012

Event:

 

A Capella Against Hunger

 

Location: Hendricks Chapel – Syracuse University, 215 University Place, Syracuse

For More Info: 518-929-1964

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/1/2012

Event:

 

Chanel Holiday Trunk Show

 

Location: Lashes, Locks & Lips, 136 Walton Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-430-4926

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/1/2012

Event:

 

Children’s Gingerbread House Workshops

 

Location: Erie Canal Museum, 318 Erie Boulevard East, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-471-0593 x10

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/1/2012

Event:

 

Paula Poundstone LIVE

 

Location: Palace Theater, 2384 James St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-463-9240

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/2/2012

Event:

 

Christmas Tree Sale

 

Location: Great Swamp Conservancy, 8375 North Main Street, Canastota

For More Info: 315-697-2950

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

Armory Square Horse Drawn Wagon Rides (Saturdays only)

 

Location: Armory Square, 500 S. Franklin St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-428-9205

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

Holiday Brunch at Empire Brewing Company (Saturdays only)

 

Location: Empire Brewing Company, 120 Walton St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-428-9205

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

Holiday Tea/Entertainment at the Jefferson Clinton Hotel (Saturdays only)

 

Location: Jefferson Clinton Hotel, 416 S. Clinton St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-428-9205

 

FRIDAY FACTS All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 5 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Starts: 12/1/2012 Ends: 12/31/2012

Event:

 

Exhibit: Central Library Hosts Works by Lisa Noviasky

 

Location: Robert P. Kinchen Central Library, 447 South Salina Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315.435.1834

Starts: 12/2/2012 Ends: 12/2/2012

Event:

 

25th Annual Teddy Bear Tea

 

Location: Everson Museum, 401 Harrison St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-439-1105

Starts: 12/2/2012 Ends: 12/2/2012

Event:

 

Live! at Setnor Auditorium

 

Location: Syracuse University, 215 University Place, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-699-5856

Starts: 12/3/2012 Ends: 12/3/2012

Event:

 

Holiday Favorites and Britten’s Ceremony of Carols

 

Location: Le Moyne College, 1419 Salt Springs Rd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-445-4200

Starts: 12/3/2012 Ends: 12/3/2012

Event:

 

Irish Night

 

Location: Christ the King Retreat House, 500 Brookford Rd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-446-2680

Starts: 12/3/2012 Ends: 12/3/2012

Event:

 

Shaolin Warriors

 

Location: SRC Arena, 4585 West Seneca Turnpike, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-498-2622

Starts: 12/3/2012 Ends: 12/3/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Eastern Michigan

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/5/2012 Ends: 12/5/2012

Event:

 

Jazz Ensemble and Young Lions of CNY

 

Location: Le Moyne College, 1419 Salt Springs Rd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-445-4200

 

FRIDAY FACTS All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 6 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Starts: 12/6/2012 Ends: 12/6/2012

Event:

 

Evolution and the Problem of Evil – McDevitt Center Lecture at Le Moyne College

 

Location: Le Moyne College, 1419 Salt Springs Rd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-445-6200

Starts: 12/6/2012 Ends: 12/6/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Long Beach State

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/7/2012 Ends: 12/7/2012

Event:

 

Vocal Jazz and Broadway Hits

 

Location: Le Moyne College, 1419 Salt Springs Rd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-445-4200

Starts: 12/7/2012 Ends: 12/31/2012

Event:

 

Exhibit: Grant Dolge

 

Location: Imagine, 38 E. Genesee St., Skaneateles

For More Info: 315-685-6263

Starts: 12/8/2012 Ends: 12/8/2012

Event:

 

From the Earth Arts & Craft Festival

 

Location: Onondaga Nation School, 249 Route 11A, Nedrow

For More Info: 315-469-6991

Starts: 12/8/2012 Ends: 12/8/2012

Event:

 

NYS Indoor Go-Kart Racing Championship

 

Location: Empire Expo Center/NYS Fairgrounds, 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-676-1061

Starts: 12/8/2012 Ends: 12/8/2012

Event:

 

Play: The Adventures of Rudolph

 

Location: Mulroy Civic Center at Oncenter, 800 S. State St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-435-8000

Starts: 12/8/2012 Ends: 12/8/2012

Event:

 

SU Sport Management 8th Annual Charity Sport Auction

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 551-427-4339

 

FRIDAY FACTS All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 7 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Starts: 12/8/2012 Ends: 12/8/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Monmouth

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/8/2012 Ends: 12/8/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse Vocal Ensemble Christmas Pie Concert & Reception

 

Location: Holy Cross Church, 4112 E. Genesee St, DeWitt

For More Info: 315-469-3379

Starts: 12/9/2012 Ends: 12/9/2012

Event:

 

Bluegrass Christmas Party with the Diamond Someday Bluegrass Band

 

Location: Marcellus American Legion, 13 E. Main St., Marcellus

For More Info: 315-572-2247

Starts: 12/9/2012 Ends: 12/9/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse Vocal Ensemble Christmas Pie Concert and Reception

 

Location: St Mark’s Lutheran Church, 2840 Cold Springs Rd., Baldwinsville

For More Info: 315-469-3379

Starts: 12/14/2012 Ends: 12/14/2012

Event:

 

3rd Annual Arts Across Campus Legends of Jazz Series presents the Joey DeFrancesco Trio, Location: Onondaga Community College, 4585 W Seneca Turnpike, Syracuse

For More Info: 800-234-4797

Starts: 12/14/2012 Ends: 12/14/2012

Event:

 

Winter Snow Tour featuring Audrey Assad with special guest Erin Gauvin

 

Location: Inspiration Hall, 709 James Street, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-214-7333

Starts: 12/15/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Canisus

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/15/2012 Ends: 12/15/2012

Event:

 

The Cake Boss – Buddy Valastro: Homemade for the Holidays Tour

 

Location: Mulroy Civic Center at Oncenter, 800 S. State St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-435-8000

 

FRIDAY FACTS All events listed can be found at www.VisitSyracuse.org Page 8 of 8 Courtesy of: Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 572 S. Salina St. Syracuse, NY 13202 800-234-4797 www.VisitSyracuse.org

 

Starts: 12/17/2012 Ends: 12/17/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Detroit

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/18/2012 Ends: 12/18/2012

Event:

 

Brew & View Series featuring Dracula’s Daughter & The Wolfman

 

Location: Palace Theater, 2384 James St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-463-9240

Starts: 12/22/2012 Ends: 12/22/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Temple

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/23/2012 Ends: 12/23/2012

Event:

 

Empire Brass featuring Elisabeth von Trapp

 

Location: SRC Arena, 4585 West Seneca Turnpike, Syracuse

For More Info: 315-498-2622

Starts: 12/29/2012 Ends: 12/29/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. Alcorn State

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Starts: 12/31/2012 Ends: 12/31/2012

Event:

 

40 BeLOW-OUT: New Year’s Eve Party featuring Joe Driscoll

 

Location: Landmark Theatre, 362 S. Salina St., Syracuse

For More Info: 315-470-1835

Starts: 12/31/2012 Ends: 12/31/2012

Event:

 

Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs Central Connecticut

 

Location: Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave., Syracuse

For More Info: 888-366-3849

Posted: Saturday, December 1st, 2012 @ 8:19 am by Curt
Filed under: Blog Skaneateles
Tags:

 
 
 
 

Dickens Christmas in Skaneateles Returns Nov. 23 Festival a Tradition for Four Generations of a Rochester-Area Family   Brett Norsworthy, of Wolcott, N.Y., had become a real-life Scrooge. “If it hadn’t been for my children, I never would have celebrated the holiday,” he recalls.     Then, in 2000, he, his wife, Fran, and their four daughters and son, Duke, became the Cratchit family in the cast of Dickens Christmas in Skaneateles.   Life hasn’t been the same since.   “Now, I can’t wait for Christmas each year,” says Norsworthy, who has been playing Barry M. Deep, the local mortician, since his son outgrew the role of Tiny Tim. “It’s not Christmas unless we’re at Dickens.”   In 2006, Norsworthy’s father-in-law, Clarence Emery, of Brockport, and his wife, Wendy, joined the cast, as Mr. and Mrs. Fezziwig.       And finally, last year, Norsworthy’s 1-year-old granddaughter, Madisyn Emery, became the youngest-ever cast member, playing the last child left at the orphanage before Christmas.   “We have met and worked with so many wonderful and talented people over the years, many of whom have become close friends,” says Norsworthy, who has never missed a rehearsal or a performance. “I can’t imagine Christmas without this festival. This is our Christmas.”   Thousands of people who return year after year share the sentiment.  

Dickens Christmas opens its 19th season Nov. 23 with the World’s Smallest Christmas Parade. Charles Dickens and his entourage will leave at noon from the old firehouse on Fennell Street and proceed east to Jordan and Genesee streets, arriving at the Sherwood House porch in time for the 12:10 p.m. grand opening.  

The festival is produced by Scarlett Rat Entertainment and presented by Mirbeau Inn & Spa and the Skaneateles-area business community. It runs over five weekends this year—from noon to 4 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 23, with a limited show (noon to 3 p.m.) Dec. 24.   So, what brings these Victorian-era characters to a Finger Lakes village?   The year is 1842, and Charles Dickens is working on his soon-to-be-written classic “A Christmas Carol.” In need of inspiration, he journeys to Skaneateles accompanied by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. On the village streets, they encounter Scrooge, Tiny Tim, Jacob Marley, and the Ghosts of Christmas Past and Christmas Present, among other local denizens. Slowly but surely, the story takes shape.   The festival is free and draws more than 20,000 visitors each year.  

Highlights include:   • The Revels Live—Christmas carol sing-along—2 p.m. every day at the Gazebo. Twelve groups form, each representing one of the 12 days of Christmas. The groups vie for attention, and at the end, Queen Victoria awards a silver teasel to the most spirited performer. Winners have been known to wear their coveted silver teasels throughout the season.   • Scenes from “A Christmas Carol,” featuring guests from the audience, performed at 12:30, 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. on the steps of the Masonic Temple.   • Horse-drawn wagon rides around the village, departing from the Sherwood Inn, provided by Route 80 Stables.   • Free refreshments, including roasted chestnuts donated by Tops Friendly Markets and Johnny Angel’s and roasted outside Johnny Angel’s, and Byrne Dairy eggnog served by the Girl Scouts.   For children, Mother Goose will read holiday stories at the Skaneateles Library and Father Christmas will hand out treats from the porch of the Masonic Temple.   And for children of all ages, the Wonderful Wizard of the North will perform comedy magic shows at 1 and 3 p.m. Dec. 1, 2, 15, 16, 22 and 23 at the Skaneateles Library. Various musical groups, including the Victorian Dancers and Singers, will perform on alternate weekends. For a full schedule of events, go to www.skaneateles.com.  

Everyone is invited to borrow period costumes from the Chamber of Commerce, 22 Jordan St., and join in the merriment.   “Our village becomes a magical place during the holiday season,” says Susan Dove, director of the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation. “We invite Dickens fans from near and far to step back in time and join us for a slower-paced, more enjoyable atmosphere, where shopping can still be fun.   “We have more than 70 shops and restaurants, sure to please any taste,” she notes. “Why not make a weekend of it, and stay at one of our lovely bed-and-breakfasts, hotels or inns.”   Behind the scenes   Dickens Christmas has a cast of about 65, including young apprentice talent, which is joined by a variety of guest musicians and caroling groups. The show comes together in just six rehearsals. “We pack a lot in and streamline the process of building a character,” says Jim Greene, of Dryden, who is producing director and plays Dickens. “Every actor learns music and uses improvisational techniques to build his character and become part of the ensemble.”   Direction comes from Maria Wechsler, of Marcellus, who is artistic director and plays Queen Victoria; Kristen Baskewicz, of Rochester, who is music director and plays Lady Charlotte Anne, Duchess of Buccleuch; Brian Goldblatt, of Lafayette, who is managing director and plays Jacob Marley; and Tracey Greene, of Dryden, who is costumer.   More than 120 local businesses make Dickens Christmas possible through their sponsorship support. This year’s presenting sponsor is Mirbeau Inn & Spa.   Father Christmas sponsors include CNY Fertility and CNY Healing Arts, Johnny Angel’s Heavenly Hamburgers, The Sherwood Inn, SRC Arena, Summit Auto, Tops Friendly Markets, Verizon Business Services, and The Village Inn and Old Stone Mill.   Charles Dickens sponsors include Arbor House Inn and Suites, Bluewater Grill, Community Bank, Creekside Books & Coffee, Doug’s Fish Fry, Fleur de lis Florist, Group M Communications, Imagine, Joe’s Pasta Garage, KeyBank, M&T Bank, Mid-Lakes Navigation, Paris Flea, Pomodoro, Rhubarb, the Skaneateles Library, Skaneateles Town Square, the Skaneateles YMCA and Community Center and Wegmans.   The festival is further supported through ticket sales from a Dickens Raffle. First prize is a $1,000 gift certificate from Mirbeau Inn & Spa; second prize is a family membership to the Skaneateles YMCA and Community Center; third prize is a $500 gift certificate from Mirbeau; fourth prize is an amethyst necklace from Imagine; fifth prize is two tickets to an SU Men’s Basketball game, courtesy of Galaxy Communications; and sixth prize is two tickets to “The Sound of Christmas,” featuring Elisabeth von Trapp, Dec. 21 at the SRC Arena. Raffle tickets are $5 each, three for $10, 10 for $20, and are on sale at the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce and other local merchants.   Additionally, when tickets to “The Sound of Christmas” are purchased through the Skaneateles Chamber (or when purchasers order their tickets online at srcarena.comand type in the promo code DICKENS), $5 from the sale of each ticket will go toward Dickens Christmas and purchasers will get preferred seating.   Looking for still another Dickens-inspired way to celebrate the season? The Sherwood Inn will offer Dickens Christmas Ale, made for it exclusively by Empire Brewing Co. with water from Skaneateles Lake.   For more information on Dickens Christmas, go to www.skaneateles.com, call 315-685-0552, or follow the event on Facebook (Dickens Christmas in Skaneateles) or Twitter (@DickensXmas).  

-#-

Posted: Friday, November 9th, 2012 @ 7:23 am by Curt
Filed under: Blog Skaneateles
Tags: ,,

 
 
 
 

 

Dickens Christmas Brings Its Magic to Skaneateles

Do you believe in magic?

If not, you may have a hard time explaining the 60+ Victorian-era characters who will soon be roaming the streets of Skaneateles.

Dickens Christmas returns for its 18th year Nov. 25 and runs noon to 4 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 18, with a limited show (noon to 3 p.m.) Dec. 24.

And what brings these merry marauders to town? The year is 1842, and Charles Dickens is gathering research for his soon-to-be-written classic, “A Christmas Carol.” He and Queen Victoria journey to Skaneateles, where they meet such villagers as Scrooge, Tiny Tim, Fagin, Jacob Marley, and the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future.

The free, family-friendly event draws more than 20,000 visitors each year. It is produced by Scarlett Rat Entertainment and sponsored by Mirbeau Inn and Spa and the Skaneateles-area business community.

Highlights include:

• The World’s Smallest Christmas Parade, which kicks off Nov. 25 at noon. The parade—featuring Charles Dickens and his entourage and a handful of floats—begins at the old firehouse on Fennell Street and proceeds east to Jordan and Genesee streets, arriving at the Sherwood House porch in time for the 12:10 p.m. grand opening.

• The Revels Live—Christmas carol sing-along—2 p.m. every day at the Gazebo. Twelve groups form, each representing one of the 12 days of Christmas. The groups vie for attention, and at the end, Queen Victoria awards a silver teasel to the most spirited performer. Winners have been known to wear their coveted silver teasels throughout the season.

• Scenes from “A Christmas Carol,” featuring guests from the audience, performed at 12:30, 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. on the steps of the Masonic Temple.

• Performances by Striking Strings, the Eastman Community Music School Hammered Dulcimer Ensemble, at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m. Dec. 11 at the Skaneateles Library.

• Horse-drawn wagon rides around the village, departing from the Sherwood Inn.

• Free refreshments, including roasted chestnuts donated by Tops Friendly Markets and roasted outside Johnny Angel’s, and Byrne Dairy eggnog served by the Girl Scouts.

For children, Mother Goose will read holiday stories at the Skaneateles Library and Father Christmas will hand out treats from the porch of the Masonic Temple.

Everyone is invited to borrow period costumes from the Chamber of Commerce, 22 Jordan St., and join in the merriment. New this year will be the identification of “Official Dickens Photo Spots,” which serve as an ideal backdrop for family photos.

“Our village becomes a magical place during the holiday season,” says Susan Dove, director of the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation. “We invite Dickens fans from near and far to step back in time and join us for a slower-paced, more enjoyable atmosphere, where shopping can still be fun. We have more than 70 shops and restaurants, sure to please any taste.”

Looking for still more magic?

Meet John Henry Anderson, Wonderful Wizard of the North.

Anderson (aka Dave Rojahn, of York, Pa.) will perform comedy magic shows at 1 and 3 p.m. Nov. 25 and 26 at the Skaneateles Library; at 7 p.m. Dec. 2 at the United Methodist Church (as part of Skaneateles Sings); and at 1 and 3 p.m. Dec. 3, 4, 10 and 11 at the Skaneateles Library.

Anderson was a popular Scottish magician who toured the United States in the 1840s and 1850s and “led a very diverse life,” says Rojahn. “He grew up poor and was orphaned at the age of 10 but was determined to make something of himself. At 17 he started performing magic. His show went on to become world famous, and he performed for Queen Victoria and other crown heads of Europe and the Orient.”

Rojahn says today’s audiences would find Anderson’s tricks dull (“things moved a lot slower back then”), so he’s added a partner to the act—Rocky, the world’s only mind-reading raccoon. “Children and adults alike find him irresistible, with his outrageous antics and amazing feats of mind-reading,” he says.

To ensure that audiences always see something new, Rojahn changes the act from year to year. This year, Rocky will pull water from someone’s head, make cards jump from one person’s pocket to another, and make money appear and disappear.

Rojahn describes the Dickens cast as “absolutely wonderful” and says “everyone comes to have fun.” What does he enjoy most? “Just being in Skaneateles—what better place is there to celebrate the holidays? It’s like being in a storybook.”

Behind the scenes

Magic doesn’t just happen—it’s conjured by the cast and crew and village merchants, with an assist from Mother Nature.

Dickens Christmas has a cast of about 65, including young apprentice talent, which is joined by a variety of guest musicians and caroling groups. The show comes together in just six rehearsals. “We pack a lot in and streamline the process of building a character,” says Jim Greene, of Dryden, who is producing director and plays Dickens. “Every actor learns music and uses improvisational techniques to build his character and become part of the ensemble.”

Direction comes from Maria Wechsler, of Marcellus, who is artistic director and plays Queen Victoria; Kristen Baskewicz, of Rochester, who is music director and plays the headmistress of the finishing school; Brian Goldblatt, of Lafayette, who is associate director and plays Jacob Marley; Krystal Scott, of Weedsport, who is associate director; and Tracey Greene, of Dryden, who is costumer.

The artwork for this year’s poster was provided by Kathleen Schneider, of Camillus, a co-owner of Gallery 54 whose artwork also formed the basis for this year’s Lavender Festival poster.

More than 120 local businesses make Dickens Christmas possible through their sponsorship support. This year’s presenting sponsor is Mirbeau Inn and Spa. Father Christmas sponsors include Johnny Angel’s Heavenly Hamburgers, KeyBank, The Sherwood Inn, Summit Auto, Tops Friendly Markets and Verizon Business Services. Charles Dickens sponsors include ADworks of Skaneateles, Arbor House Inn and Suites, Bluewater Grill, Community Bank, Creekside Books & Coffee, Doug’s Fish Fry, Group M Communications, Haylor, Freyer & Coon, Imagine, Joe’s Pasta Garage, M&T Bank, Mid-Lakes Navigation, Paris Flea, Pomodoro, Rhubarb, the Skaneateles Library, Skaneateles Town Square and Wegmans.

“I’m always excited about the magic we create, and the magic people bring to this show,” says Jim Greene. “You gotta believe….”

For more information on Dickens Christmas, go to http://www.skaneateles.com, call 315-685-0552, or follow the event on Facebook (Dickens Christmas in Skaneateles) or Twitter (@DickensXmas).

Posted: Thursday, November 3rd, 2011 @ 10:39 am by Curt
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Scrooge_Skaneateles_Festival

Scrooge_Skaneateles_Festival

Dickens Christmas Opens Nov. 26 in Skaneateles

From the world’s smallest Christmas parade to a visit by New York Gov. DeWitt Clinton, lots of surprises are in store

When Charles Dickens and Queen Victoria take up residence in Skaneateles this holiday season, they will be accompanied by a new dignitary—New York Gov. DeWitt Clinton—as the three make their way to this Finger Lakes village via the historic Erie Canal.

The year is 1842. Charles Dickens is gathering research for his soon-to-be-written classic, “A Christmas Carol.” On village streets, he encounters Scrooge, Tiny Tim, Jacob Marley, the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future, and a bevy of other characters.

Magic, music and merriment prevail, as the revels play, visitors ride by in horse–drawn carriages, and improvisational street theater rules the day.

It’s all part of Dickens Christmas, which returns for its 17th year the Friday after Thanksgiving. The production runs noon to 4 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 19, with a limited show (noon to 3 p.m.) Dec. 24.

The family-friendly event—produced by Scarlett Rat Entertainment and sponsored by the Skaneateles-area business community—draws some 20,000 visitors each year. (more…)

Posted: Thursday, November 4th, 2010 @ 11:04 am by Curt
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Dickens Christmas Celebrates 15th Anniversary

It began as a simple thank-you from village merchants to the Skaneateles community. Now, 15 years later, Dickens Christmas provides cherished holiday memories for thousands of families regionally and nationally.

Dickens Christmas—which opens the Friday after Thanksgiving and runs noon to 4 p.m. every weekend until Christmas—is improvisational street theater. Costumed Victorian characters wander the village streets, interacting with each other and with the public.

Horse-drawn carriage rides, carolers, concerts, chestnuts roasting on an open fire, refreshments, children’s activities, free costume rentals, locals night—all were there from the start and continue, in expanded form, as attractions today.

Dickens Christmas was the brainchild of Karen Foltz, owner of Pomodoro and Pomodoro Too, who had seen a similar production in Minnesota and—as a board member of the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce—was looking for ways to boost business. “A lot of people now bring their family and friends—it’s a highlight of their holidays,” says Foltz, who serves as co-chair of the Dickens Christmas Committee. She notes the program began as “a fun little thing to do.”

Dickens Christmas was launched in 1993 under the direction of two area event planners—Lorraine Smoral and Gloria Romeo.  They were followed by Skaneateles resident Ted Davenport, who was followed by Wrynkle in Time Productions, of Rochester. Since 2001, the program has been produced by Scarlett Rat Entertainment, under the direction of Jim Greene (a.k.a. Mr. Dickens), of Dryden, N.Y.

With Scarlett Rat came the premise for the production: In 1842, Charles Dickens and Queen Victoria visit Skaneateles. Based on the characters they meet on village streets—Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, Jacob Marley—Dickens writes “A Christmas Carol” upon his return to London.

Over the years, the cast has grown from about 30 to 50 (more than half of whom are professional, paid actors), and the level of professionalism has greatly increased, as has the number of musical and theatrical offerings. The number of local residents participating remains an important part of the show.

Greene jokes that, as producer, he hires talented people and takes all the credit. But he says much of the program’s current success is due to the work of artistic director Maria Wechsler, whom he describes as “brilliant,” and musical director Kelly Stallard, who “has a gift for empowering everyone to sing with their own voice.”

Many of the professional actors are affiliated with the Sterling Renaissance Festival, which is where Greene was working in 1999 when he first took part in Dickens Christmas (playing Emerson Wales, the Rat Catcher). About 90 percent of the cast returns each year. “There’s a lot of love there,” says Greene, whose wife and children have all been a part of the production. “It’s a wonderful way to share the holiday season.”

One constant over the years has been Onondaga Hill resident Bob Krigbaum in the role of Scrooge.

“People get a kick out of my asking the shopkeepers for rent,” Krigbaum says. “I have a ball with it. Once I go into a store, it’s like magnetism. I have them laughing out loud.

“To be Scrooge, you have to be mean. It’s tough to be mean,” he says. “You learn to think real quick, to have an answer for whatever comes your way. Sometimes, people’s reactions are different than what you’d expect.”

Even after 15 years, Krigbaum has no difficulty keeping the character fresh. “The people you interact with help you do that,” he says. “Every time I come out here, it’s the first time.”

Krigbaum’s portrayal of Scrooge is drawn from three movies: “A Christmas Carol” (1951), “Scrooge” (1970) and “The Muppet Christmas Carol” (1992). According to Krigbaum, that makes the character—in turns—serious, funny and musical.

Krigbaum, who is a full-time professional actor with a degree in theater, spends the season playing not only Scrooge, but also Santa Claus (at Burnet Park). A man of many talents, he also is a professional clown, mime, World War II re-enactor and local TV personality.

Both Krigbaum and Greene recall having posed for hundreds of holiday photos. “When people ask to take my picture, I tell them, ‘It will cost you a shady penny,’ and they’ll give me one,” Krigbaum says.

“It’s been a real joy to share this work with my family,” says Greene. “Do I have a favorite moment? No. That’s like asking if I have a favorite child. But there’s been a lot of funny stuff, touching stuff, over the years.”

One of the most emotional moments for him, Greene says, was when he presented a check to the Skaneateles Fire Department in 2001, following 9/11.

As for the funny stuff, Greene says: “My job is to make people laugh all day. I help people create memories with their families. I’m pretty lucky to have this be my work.”

The real Mr. Dickens couldn’t have said it better.

 

Posted: Tuesday, November 11th, 2008 @ 11:49 am by Curt
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