The Christmas holiday season in Bethel officially began on Saturday, Dec. 4, with the arrival of Santa Claus who rode up Main Street on the top of a fire truck. Santa arrived at the Bethel Common in time for the lighting of the Christmas tree. Santa’s visit was part of a series of holiday events that continues through Christmas Eve. I spent part of Saturday afternoon taking the horse-drawn wagon ride through Bethel. The wagon rides are scheduled for two more Saturdays, Dec. 11 and Dec. 18, from 2 to 4: p.m. You don’t have to be a kid to take the wagon ride. The ride starts at the Bethel Common near the Chapman Inn. A horse named Sam I Am, who is decked out in sleigh bells, pulls the wagon down Church Street, across Elm and High streets, and back up Main Street. During my ride, passengers sang Christmas songs and waved to everyone along the wagon’s route. Sam seemed to love the attention. The rides are free and Sam is happy to pose for pictures. When he’s not giving wagon rides, Sam lives at Deepwood Farm in Albany. Later in the winter, Sam will give sleigh rides at the Bethel Inn. You can call the Bethel Inn for ticket information.
Bethel has received a dusting of snow over the past week. Temperatures have been in the twenties at night and are allowing the local ski areas to make snow on the mountains. From Bethel you can see the lights on Mt. Abram as snow is made. However, it takes more than a few cold nights to freeze the rivers and ponds. The thin layer of ice on the edges of the ponds and bogs will not support either animals or people. Please do not go out on the ice until it is safe.
The Rotary Club of Bethel Annual Seniors’ Christmas Luncheon will be held Tuesday, Dec. 14, at 12 noon at the Jackson-Silver American Legion Post 68, Gore Road, Greenwood (Locke Mills). There will be a ham dinner with all the traditional fixings and live entertainment.
Marcia and Laurence Austin have returned from a three-week tour of Wales and Sussex and Kent, England.
Sympathy is extended to the family of Carrie E. Holt, of Berlin, N.H., who died on Dec. 2. Carrie graduated from Gould Academy in 1947. She is survived by her husband, Carl, her three children, brothers Avery Angevine and Ernest Angevine of Bethel, John Angevine of West Stewartstown, N.H., and her sister Mary Deblois of Shelburne, N.H.
Do you have community or holiday news that you’d like to see in the Bethel column? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 824-2483.