Edna York is celebrating her 103rd birthday today Dec. 27. Congratulations on your birthday, Edna! In 2009, the town of Bethel presented Edna with the Boston Post Cane, which is given to the oldest citizen in many New England towns. The tradition began in August 1909 when Edwin A. Grozier, publisher of the Boston Post newspaper, sent ebony canes with 14-carat gold heads to 700 New England towns with the request that each town give the cane to their oldest male citizen. Upon that person’s death, the cane would be transmitted to the next oldest male citizen. In 1930, after much controversy, eligibility for the canes was opened to women. Over the years, many towns have lost or misplaced the original Boston Post canes. Some canes have been stolen. Bethel, however, has been able to continue the tradition. The Boston Post was not so fortunate. Once considered one of the nation’s leading newspapers, it stopped publication in 1957, a victim of competition from other newspapers, radio, and television.
More than 100 people attended Bethel’s Living Nativity on Sunday, Dec. 23, on the town common. After a week of snowstorms and flooding rains, the weather cooperated for the performance. Temperatures were in the high twenties, with cloudy skies, and a few snow flurries. This reenactment of the first Christmas has been a Bethel tradition since 1964.
If you missed the horse-drawn wagon rides during Bethel’s Country Christmas, you have one more chance. On Sunday, Dec. 30, from 1 to 3 p.m., Sam I Am (the horse) from Deepwood Farms will give free wagon rides through downtown Bethel. You can meet Sam I Am at the north end of the town common next to the Chapman Inn. The rides are sponsored by The Glen House and Sunday River Rentals.
Don’t forget that Jan. 1 is SAD Community Ski Day at Sunday River. On Community Ski Days, residents of SAD 44 may get free lift tickets, free equipment rentals, free adult learn to ski/ride clinic, and a 50 percent discount on food and beverages.
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