Now that Thanksgiving is over, I will allow myself to think about Christmas. My mom used to get the blues around this time of year. It didn’t make sense to me because I only saw the magic of the holiday season, but now I know she was remembering the happy holidays of her childhood when her parents were alive and she was the child surrounded by loving adults. It’s the warmth of a loving family that kids want and that’s what we miss when we’re older. It’s a bittersweet holiday, isn’t it? But let’s not dwell on that. There is much to be done and much to look forward to.
This is the time of year when everyone is planning parties and events, and Santa is the busiest guy in town. I don’t know how he does it. He’ll be at the secondary center cafeteria on Sunday morning for the Kiwanis Breakfast. Then, Sunday evening, he’ll be at the tree lighting ceremony in Exeter at the Lions Memorial Park. Next Saturday, the Wyoming Recreation Board invited him to be guest of honor in a parade and a celebration in the park on Butler Street. West Wyoming is no slouch. Hose Company No. 1 will host him at its hall on Shoemaker Avenue. Phew! I hope those elves keep working while he’s away partying with the kids.
If you want a more relaxed way to get in the spirit, plan to attend one of the free musical events at the high school. You’ll be amazed at how talented the students are while you show them that we value their efforts and the arts in our schools. When they look out into the audience it will be a real treat for them to see a full house.
Like history? No need to drive all the way to Cape May. The Swetland Homestead will be all decked out in period costumes and decorations. Step back in time to a 19th century Christmas.
Everyone seems to love those Hallmark movies where the city girl comes home to her small town for the holidays and meets up with a handsome guy at the local tree lighting or other community event. Wake up and turn off the television! We’re living in that small town and have all the charming activities imagined by writers in Hollywood. All of the warmth and joy is right outside our doors if we want it. Get involved. It’s the best cure for the holiday blues.
Wonderland in the Park
Mark your calendars for Winter Wonderland in the Park on Saturday, Dec. 7, presented by the Wyoming Recreation Board. The Santa parade begins on First Street at 4 p.m. and follows Monument Avenue to the Butler Street Park, where children can take pictures with Santa, enjoy pizza, cookies and hot chocolate, and mail letters to Santa in a special mailbox that delivers directly to the North Pole. The Wyoming Free Library will be on hand with a craft activity and story for the children. The fun will be capped with the annual tree lighting.
Swetland holiday program
The Luzerne County Historical Society will present its holiday-themed Festive Traditions program at the Swetland Homestead from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, and Sunday, Dec. 8. Costumed guides will lead the tours. See a demonstration of period hearth cooking and learn about late-1700s and early-1800s favorite dishes.
New this year is Festive Wreaths, a silent auction of traditional and contemporary holiday wreaths donated by local businesses and individuals. Proceeds benefit the programs, collections and exhibitions of the Luzerne County Historical Society. Bids on the Festive Wreaths will be accepted through Sunday at 4 p.m. Hot cider and cookies will be provided.
Tickets are $8 for members, $12 for non-members and $5 for children age 5-17. Admission to Festive Wreaths is free. To purchase tickets in advance or to become a member, call 570-823-6244 ext. 3 or email email@example.com. Reservations are not required and tickets can be purchased at the door. For information, go to www.luzernehistory.org or www.facebook.com/luzernehistory/.
Legos at the library
Wyoming Free Library will have a Very Lego Christmas at noon Saturday, Dec. 14. Activities include building a Lego gingerbread house, designing Santa’s sleigh and building a jingle bell maze. Children of all ages are welcome but space is limited, so make reservations by calling 570-693-1364 or email www.wyomingfreelibrary.com.
New fire station in Wyoming
Wyoming Hose Company No. 1 is getting a new home at 133 E. Eighth St., Wyoming, between Dennison and Butler avenues. The original fire house was near Wyoming Avenue. It was sold a few years ago, but the company held together and worked hard toward their goal of having a new building.
Thanks to the generosity of Nicholas and Cynthia Tsioles, the dream is about to come true. They donated the land and fundraising will soon begin. According to John Marianacci, 2020 will be a very important year in rebuilding their future, and they look forward to serving Wyoming and neighboring communities.
Breakfast with Santa
Wyoming Area Kiwanis Club will hold its Breakfast with Santa from 8:30 a.m. to noon Sunday, Dec. 1, at the high school. Approximately 500 children and adults will enjoy a delightful morning, good food, and a chance to take a photo with the big guy. Adult tickets cost $8 and tickets for children ages 2 to 12 are $5. Children under 2 will be free of charge. To make a donation to help cover expenses, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hometown Heroes Banners
The Kiwanis Club is launching the Hometown Heroes Banner Program to honor residents and family members of Wyoming and West Wyoming who are serving or have served in the Armed Forces. Banners will be placed on street poles on Shoemaker Avenue, Wyoming Avenue and Eighth Street.
The banners will be displayed from May 2020 to Nov. 11, 2022. Cost is $225, which includes installation and removal. After the two years, the banners will be removed and given to the service person or family member. To get an application, contact email@example.com.
WA pasta dinner
and craft show
Wyoming Area Senior Parents are seeking vendors for their pasta dinner and craft fair Sunday, Dec. 8. Call Kelly at 570-709-1623 for a table.
Wyoming Area holiday
Wyoming Area Music Department will hold a series of holiday concerts which began Nov. 26 and will continue throughout December. Performances will be held in the secondary center auditorium. Thursday, Dec. 5, intermediate and high school bands will perform at 7 p.m.; Tuesday, Dec. 10, third grade musical, 7 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 12, high school guitar and piano, 7 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 19, intermediate and high school chorus, 7 p.m. All concerts are free and open to the public. Please come out to show your support for our young musicians.
Wyoming Area Catholic news
Wyoming Area Catholic School and Pittston Area PDG Leo’s Club have joined forces to fight blindness. Donate your used prescription glasses and sunglasses in a special container in the WA Catholic School Lobby. Since 1917, Lions/Leos have been improving eye care to millions worldwide. Sight programs remain one of the Lions Club most defining causes.
Wyoming/West Wyoming Seniors news
Wyoming/West Wyoming Seniors will have their Christmas party at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3, at The Avenue Diner. Please be there by 12:30.
At the last meeting, sandwiches and cake were served in honor of Helen Ostrowski’s 100th birthday. (See page P10 for photos from the party.)
The 50/50 winners were Ann Kozloski, Nancy Marcy, Marion Mantione, and Marion Pocceschi. The bingo jackpot was won by Helen Ostrowski.
New members are welcome. For information, contact JoAnn at 570-283-3388.
West Wyoming Hose
Company’s Santa Breakfast
West Wyoming Hose Company No. 1 will host a Breakfast with Santa from 9 a.m. to noon Sunday, Dec. 8, at their banquet hall, 926 Shoemaker Ave., West Wyoming. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for children and are available from any member. Advanced ticket sales are appreciated by calling the banquet hall at 570-693-3660. Tickets also can be purchased at the door. Santa will be available to greet the children and take pictures. Breakfast is for all ages.
West Wyoming trash fee
Bills for trash fees, in place of stickers, were mailed in October. All residents must pay this bill. The cost remains the same as last year. The rebate phase will be in effect until the end of January. Cost is $185 or $175 for seniors age 65 and older. Starting Feb. 1, the fee will be $200, and beginning March 1, the cost will be $300. You can pay by credit card at www.westwyoming.org. Mastercard and Discover will be accepted.
Exeter Lions tree lighting
Exeter Lions Club will have its annual Christmas tree lighting and visit from Santa Claus on Sunday Dec. 1, at Exeter Lions Memorial Park on Wyoming Avenue, next to the Exeter Borough Building. The event will start at 5 p.m. with snacks and refreshments. There will be the ceremonial tree lighting and pictures with Santa Claus.
Scouting for Food
The annual Scouting for Food campaign will be underway in Exeter through Saturday, Dec. 14. Cub Scout Pack 310 and Boy Scout Troop 311 soon will begin distributing flyers to every home in Exeter Borough asking residents to place a bag of non-perishable food items on their front porch on the date and time listed with the flyer attached. The donated food items will be picked up by the Scouts, leaders and families, and will be sorted and distributed to a local food pantry so that all families may have a merry Christmas.
Call Walter Janoski at 570-693-1930 or Lorraine Backo at 570-693-3724 for information.
Adam Kalmanowicz Exeter Legion news
The Adam Kalmanowicz Exeter American Legion Post 833 recently met at American Grill Restaurant in Exeter and were presented with a donation from Shaun Cruz, the restaurant’s owner, in honor of veterans and those currently serving in the United States Armed Forces. The American Legion Post extended its appreciation for his and the restaurant’s support of veterans. The money will be used for programs to support veterans.
The Adam Kalmanowicz Post is seeking new members. Anyone interested in joining and who has actively served in the military may contact any member. New members will be offered free dues for one year.
State office hours
State Rep. Aaron Kaufer’s Exeter office, 1101 Wyoming Ave., is open noon to 2 p.m. the third Friday of the month.
Barbara Bullions writes about Exeter, Wyoming and West Wyoming every week. To list an item, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 570-301-2185 by Monday.