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The past comes alive

Re-enactors, from left, Dan Bobby and Barbara and Vincent Kundrikova take part in a Victorian Christmas at the Sharpe House in Eckley Miners Village, Saturday. Below, re-enactor Phil Voystock plays the mandolin.

Don Carey photos/the times leader

An ornament adorns a tree during a Victorian Christmas at the Sharpe House in Eckley Miners Village.

FOSTER TWP. – Hosts and hostesses in period dress welcomed guests to the Victorian Christmas at Eckley Miners Village on Saturday.

The yuletide observance featured a beautifully decorated Victorian showplace in seasonal colors and accoutrements.

As guests entered the period home, they were greeted by an impressively dressed Christmas tree off of the foyer and were escorted by nattily dressed volunteers to a formal dinning room replete with a delicious selection of seasonal cookies, pastries and teas.

A number of vendors were stationed throughout the house selling everything from holiday crafts to estate jewelry.

A silent auction featuring original artwork and period collectors was conducted to raise money for the historic site’s continued upkeep.

“This fundraising event was necessary because our funding and staff were recently cut by 50 percent,” said event organizer Karen Esak. “We’re actually anticipating another financial hit in January.”

Esak, who lives at the village and is the chief tour guide, said the recent budgetary cuts have caused her to start taking up the mantle of fundraiser.

Many of the period decorations for the Victorian holiday event were hand crafted by Hazleton Area High School senior Molly Maloney of Freeland.

“I had a number of family members who actually lived here in the village,” said Maloney, who plans to study history at Penn State in the fall. “I’ve always been fascinated by the village, and I love volunteering here to help Karen.”

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