Victorian Christmas brings on holiday cheer for another year

Jenna Mccaslin, Photographer

Victorian Christmas is an event held every year in Bellefonte. It consists of many cool activities, like going out for drinks at the Christmas Cordial party and a Victorian breakfast. This year, it was held through December 9-11. Here are some of the events that occurred over this festive weekend.

The Festival of Trees: This event is organized yearly by the Central Pennsylvania Institute of Technology (CPI). Over two dozen Christmas trees were decorated and judged by a panel of CPI students, who also served light food and drink throughout the weekend. Local musicians also provided entertainment.

Victorian teas for children: Children were invited to sit at The Little House (located at 115 Howard St) and enjoy warm tea, small treats, and lunch, on December 10.

Special events with Santa: Residents can still visit Santa in his house in front of the Courthouse from now until December 22 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Some people were lucky enough to have a nice breakfast with him as a part of Victorian Christmas. The breakfast, held at the Faith United Methodist Church behind the high school, provided many activities and entertainment options alongside the hot meal. 

Fezziwig’s Holiday Party: One of the highlights of Victorian Christmas included dinner and entertainment like singing, games from the Victorian era, a Yule log ceremony, and so much more.

Christmas Cordial: This cocktail party was held at State Burger Company at 101 South Alleghany St. A good event for many adults in need of a drink, delicious food, and time away from their kids. 

Victorian Era Storytelling: Bellefonte High School history teacher Mr. Matthew Maris was stationed in the Gamble Mill’s Speakeasy telling stories about the holidays from the Victorian Era. The stories were mostly based on that era, but some were holiday-themed as well. He was dressed for the part and led several of these sessions throughout the day. There were also some sweet treats like hot cocoa and cookies for attending guests.

Maris used his history knowledge and had success with telling the stories of the Victorian times.

The stories went splendidly and lots of folks participated in the events. I spoke about holiday traditions like games, gift giving, food customs, and other traditions from the Victorian Era,” Mr. Maris said. 

Mr. Matthew Maris at the Gamble Mill December 10, when he shared historical stories from the Victorian age. (Jessica Lloyd)

Mr. Maris enjoyed the feeling of happiness in the air while spending time at events during the Victorian Christmas weekend.

“It was a fun and joyful experience. I loved seeing the smiles on people’s faces and especially the children. Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas,” Mr. Maris said. 

Victorian Christmas patrons also had the opportunity to participate in the “Cookie Crawl,” an event where people purchase a $25 tin and visit various Bellefonte businesses, which distribute pre-baked holiday cookies.

There is so much work that has been done to make this Victorian Christmas of 2022 special. The whole town put in immense amounts of effort to make this year’s events something that would be remembered.