Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Celebrating Christmas at Bluffton

With the light dusting of snow that graced campus yesterday, it can now be said that it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

The library staff put up their humongous tree in the Reading Room right before Thanksgiving. There are Christmas trees in Marbeck, several offices, residence hall rooms…

Members of SAA (Student Alumni Association) and OCMEA (Ohio Collegiate Music Education Association) assembled and decorated the 12-foot Christmas tree in the lobby of Yoder Recital Hall after Thanksgiving break.

SAA advisor Julia Szabo said, “The tree is the kind that requires you to put each individual branch into a slot in the stem. The tree was purchased approximately 20 years ago by Deb Brubaker (director of Camerata Singers) who asked the student singing group to help assemble the tree each year. At some point, the building of the tree was taken over by Gene Caskey (faculty emeritus) and Mary Amstutz (wife of staff emeritus). Several years ago, the job of assembling the tree became too much for Gene and Mary, so the Christmas tree has sat in storage. This year, SAA and OCMEA students wanted to revive the tradition. The task took less than 2 hours with all those good helpers. Community members, students, and alumni participating in the upcoming Messiah concert were able to enjoy some fellowship when the tree was completed.”

The first of the Bluffton Christmas traditions has passed for 2009 – the 114th singing of Handel’s Messiah took place last Sunday evening. Additional opportunities to celebrate on campus include:
  • Advent chapel
    Student pastoral assistants Natalie Pajestka, Ben Siebert and Hannah Rybka will lead chapel at 11 a.m. Dec. 10 in Yoder Recital Hall.
  • Advent musical
    Andrew Peterson’s “Behold the Lamb of God,” a musical performed by a group of Bluffton students at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 12 in Ramseyer Auditorium. The musical is sponsored by the campus ministries department. Admission is free.
  • Christmas Choral Concerts
    The three Bluffton student choirs will perform at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 13, Yoder Recital Hall. Tickets are required. Contact boxoffice@bluffton.edu
  • Christmas Candle Lighting Service
    Campus pastor “Tig’ Intagliata will lead the service of Christmas hymns, scripture texts and candle lighting at 9 p.m. Dec. 14 in Marbeck Commons.
While there are many formal events planned in December, often times it’s the impromptu, student-organized events that we remember most. Like singing along at the top of our lungs with Amy Grant on Second Ropp Addition, our first attempt at a ‘formal’ Christmas party (we forgot to tell they guys – they showed up in t-shirts & jeans)…

What do you remember most about celebrating Christmas at Bluffton?

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