The EastBurg Community Alliance held their Annual Winter Fest at The Historic Dansbury Depot in East Stroudsburg, PA on Saturday December13th.A modest gathering of local citizens shared in the activities presented outside the depot while a larger number explored the offerings presented within the structure. This was due partly to the brisk weather conditions indicative to this time of the year in the northeast PA region in which the festival took place but there was also a fascination within the building that lured many of the festival goers to its magical properties.
These properties were embodied primarily in the Model Train display presented by The PMMRRC which is a local railroad club whose members share their enthusiasm of the mode of transportation with one another by comparing personal collections and the insights they inspire while playfully running them on the club’s tracks. The tracks displayed at the Winter Fest were lovingly laid upon the landscape of a child’s imagination with trains filled with dreams making whistle stops at every station of the human heart. It was a delight to witness the illumination of eyes that were ignited every time the trains circled in the vicinity of the children who were present and whose ages varied from 5 to 75.
Along with The PMMRRC’s Model Train display, there were a number of activities within the depot that had their own ability to entertain its visitors. These included arts and crafts which children were invited to lend their creativity to construct, an opportunity to have one’s photograph taken with Santa’s elves, information about The EastBurg Community Alliance and its endeavors as well as those of other community organizations was available, and tickets were on sale for the event’s “Silent Night” Auction, for rides upon a horse drawn carriage, and upon a train that stood patiently outside the depot. The offerings and opportunities presented throughout the building intrigued those who explored them and added a level of pleasure to the festivities.
Although the chilled temperatures inspired many to seek the warmth provided in an interior dwelling, there was much to be experienced upon the grounds of the structure. These included choral performances of holiday music presented by Susan McCool and Friends and The New Approach Singers as well as by choirs composed of students attending local schools, craft displays presented by CJ’s Crafting Corner www.facebook.com/CJsCraftingCorner,Lucky Me Jewelry www.facebook.com/ShopLuckyMeJewelry, and Mountain Dog Candles www.facebook.com/pages/Mountain-Dog-Candles, hot dogs skillfully cooked by the depot’s volunteers, and tours of the depot’s switch tower provided by The East Stroudsburg Railroad Tower Society www.esrrtower.org. The offerings of deftly created crafts, culinary treats, and insightful explorations of the past all enhanced the day’s festivities but the gentle blending of voices inspired a song to be sung within the hearts of all who braved the chilled weather to hear its warmth.
The festival was scheduled to end with a Tree Lighting Ceremony which I wasn’t able to attend but, by accounts shared with me by those who were present during previous occasions, it was sure to had been an uplifting experience to commence the holiday season. Although I was unable to attend the Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony, I can say the portion of the festival I did attend and the experiences I encountered were very pleasant ones and left a feeling of delight that continues to linger within me. You’ll find more photographs taken during The EastBurg Community Alliance’s Annual Winter Fest at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.681193235328703.1073741836.265779613536736&type=1.
The Eastburg Community Alliance was established over 30 years ago by local leaders and business owners and is funded through a combination of local grants, direct fund raising, memberships, and local contributions. Besides their Annual Winter Fest, The EastBurg Community Alliance will Celebrate The Historic Dansbury Depot’s Opening on Wednesday December 17thand hold a Santa Train on Saturday December 20thin cooperation with the Erie Lackawanna Dining Car Preservation Society. You’ll be able to learn more about The Eastburg Community Alliance and what they offer to the community by visiting their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/EastburgAlliance.
Photography by Paparazzi Paul.