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Thank you for efforts toward Holiday Stroll

To the editor:

This year’s Holiday Stroll was a success thanks to the efforts of so many community members. We, the Juniata River Valley Visitors Bureau, could not pull this endeavor off without them.

First, the participants of the Merry Mannequins project: Lisa Knudson, Rhonda Moore, Sandra Knapik, Anney and Emille Fisher-Henson, Mifflin County Library, Ashley Henry, Michelle Fetter, Juniata Valley Bank, Deborah Bargo, MCS Bank, Kathryn Newcamp, Kelli Sheetz, Scott Moser, Rosemary Lepley, Michelle Traxler, Morgan Messerman, Lynne Weaver, Judy Mummau and Nancy Aurand. Your creativity never disappoints!

Under the leadership of Sara Buffington, the Downtown Lewistown Adopt-A-Planter sponsors did an amazing job creating winter arrangements in the flower planters along Market Street. Buffington’s decorating team, Lisa Knudson, Michele Bair and Jean Savitts, used plant material collected from at least a dozen generous home and garden owners in Mifflin and Juniata counties.

Dennis and Sandra Knapik, who decorate the entire Historic Courthouse each year for the Festival of Ice, filled the front porch and windows of the courthouse with a cheery display.

If you got the chance to stroll along the sidewalks, you heard some traditional Christmas music coming from the Historic Courthouse. Local musician and longtime supporter of the Festival of Ice, R.B. Powell, came through when we asked if it was possible to pipe music from our windows for the event.

Another longtime supporter of the Festival of Ice is John Pannizzo. He graciously allows us to use the former Glick’s Shoe Fly store each year including this year for window displays.

Brand new holiday banners were needed to help dress up Monument Square and two organizations stepped up to give us $500 donations each to purchase the banners. Thank you, Tri-County Business to Business and Friends of Jake Corman for your generosity.

Much like the Downtown Discovery Egg Contest, the Candy Cane Count scavenger hunt was developed for people of all ages to have some fun while exploring the downtown. Many of the downtown businesses hid candy canes in their windows for participants to find and keep a tally of how many they found. Anyone finding the correct amount were entered to win prizes sponsored by the Juniata Valley Bank. Four lucky winners were chosen for prizes from The Crooked Shelf Bookshop, Snowflake’s on the Square, The Square Cafe and Bakery and Sweet Frog. Special thanks goes to Rebecca Conner Miller for designing the map and entry form for the candy cane hunt.

Despite schools being closed to in-person instruction, we still were able to feature some student artwork from the following schools and organizations: Belleville Mennonite School, Mifflin County Christian Academy, Sacred Heart School and the LUMINA Center.

Calvary Church in Lewistown took on the sidewalk chalk mural project under the direction of Nicole Swanger. Christmas lyrics from well-known songs were written along Market and Main Streets.

Each year, Metzler Forest Products creates an evergreen display surrounding one of our large ice sculptures. This year, they modified this tradition and created a “selfie station” for people to use for this year’s Christmas card backdrop.

Mifflin County Library staff created a special story stroll in the windows of the library. The book was beautifully illustrated for children and their families to enjoy.

To share the Holiday Stroll experience online, several videos were created by our office and others including: East End Coffee Co., Cookies by Christy, Geisinger Hospice-Lewistown, Mifflin County Library and Snowflake’s on the Square.

The Juniata River Valley Chamber of Commerce volunteered to make the Historic Courthouse’s courtyard a fun display this year with the yard full of inflatable decorations.

Finally, thank you to Marsha Wagner and Rosemary Lepley who never fail to ask what they can do to help.

For now, we look forward to 2021 with the return of the Festival of Ice.

Jenny Barron Landis,

Buffie Boyer and Janet Walker

Juniata River Valley

Visitors Bureau

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