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Ohio Historical Society

Dickens, model train part of Christmas attractions

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LORRIE CECIL/THISWEEKNEWS
Mike Follin, Ohio Village coordinator of interpretive service and volunteer Linda Herring will portray two of the villagers at the Dickens of a Christmas event which will be held Friday-Sunday, Dec. 20-22. Times are 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
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By ThisWeek Community News  • 

The Ohio Historical Society will celebrate Christmas in two distinct ways this season.

A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens' yuletide classic, will come to life from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 13 and 14 and Dec. 20 and 21, and from noon to 5 p.m. Dec. 22 at Ohio Village, 800 E. 17th Ave.

Also, in keeping with holiday celebrations, an elaborate model-train display will be part of an overall 1950s exhibit inside the museum.

"It's about creating an old-fashioned holiday experience for the whole family," said Shannon Thomas, public relations manager for the society. "It's really about bringing people together and sharing memories."

The Dickens event, celebrating a quarter-century at the historical society, will feature actors dressed in period costumes, decorations from the era and activities for youth and adults alike, Thomas said.

Mike Follin, coordinator of interpretive services for the historical society, said although the novel is set in Victorian London, the society event will showcase how Americans celebrated Christmas.

"Most of the traditions we have at Christmastime come from England and Germany and Ireland," said Follin, who will play several characters at the event.

"But what we have done is evolved them into our own traditions," he said.

At the Ohio Village Town Hall, which has seating for 100, audience members will be asked to join in interactive performances of the novel.

Meanwhile, children can help make Christmas decorations and participate in a puppet show at the School House.

Shopping at the general store will offer Ohio products and old-time gifts.

Complimentary fire-roasted chestnuts and hot beverages will be served. Food-truck vendors also will be available.

Admission is $12 for adults, $9 for children 6 to 12 years old and free for children 5 and younger.

The model-train display was constructed in the spirit of manufacturer Lionel's "Pop" layout, introduced in 1949 and which made its way into stores in the 1950s.

The display, set in a 9-by-20-foot glass showcase, featured a rural town center and nearby residential development, snowy landscape, water tower, figurines and tunnels.

In addition to the model train, the Lustron House -- a 1950s prefabricated single-family residence made of steel -- will display decorations from the era, including an aluminum tree highlighted by a rotating color wheel.

Those exhibits are open during regular museum hours. Price of admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children 6 to 12.

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