Holiday Festival Gingerbread House Contest Will Have A Theme This Year

For the 28th year, the Newtown Savings Bank will present a holiday festival that will feature a Victorian Tea, gingerbread house contest, holiday craft boutique, festival of trees, performances of The Nutcracker Suite, and more.

The event, to be conducted Sunday, December 1, from 11 am to 4 pm, is a fundraiser for Newtown Youth & Family Services (NYFS).

All Holiday Festival activities are convenient to Main Street. Edmond Town Hall, at 45 Main Street, will house the Victorian Tea, holiday craft boutique and the Nutcracker Suite ballet performances.

The Gingerbread House Contest and Festival of Trees will be presented at C.H. Booth Library, 25 Main Street.

Trinity Church, at 36 Main Street, will host the service of “Lessons and Carols.”

House tours will take a hiatus this year as the committee wants to avoid repetition of houses as well as the holiday weekend being inconvenient for the owners of houses.

In their place, however, is the addition of historic trolley tours along Main Street, with narration provided by Town Historian Dan Cruson.

“The Newtown Holiday Festival has always been all about community coming together,” said Festival Co-Chair Jesse Rosenschein. “In order to meet the increased needs of the community over the last year, NYFS has hired many additional staff members to provide the community with additional support services and supplementary hours of operation. Participation in this event is an excellent way to support these services along with the many other valuable services NYFS continues to provide to the Newtown community and beyond.”


Gingerbread House Contest

Introduced to the holiday festival in 2007, the gingerbread house contest will again be presented at C.H. Booth Library.

New this year is a theme: All of this year’s entries must be based on a classic story book.

Teams must register their intent to participate by Monday, November 25. Visit NewtownYouthAndFamilyServices.org to download an application.

Additional rules to keep in mind during construction: one entry per person or group; no electric or battery operated lighting; and all entries must be completed edible except for the bases.

Also, bases for creations by children must not exceed 12 by 12 inches, and bases for groups and families may not exceed 15 by 20 inches.

Entries cannot include the name or any identifying information about the creators on the design.

Completed houses are to be delivered to the library on Saturday, November 30, between noon and 4 pm. Teams will also need to bring a completed entry form with them at that time.

Judging will take place on Sunday afternoon at 3:30, and decorators do not need to be present to win.


Festival Of Trees

Every year local businesses, organizations and families donate decorated trees, wreaths and holiday decorations to the Festival of Trees.

This event is presented in the lower meeting room of the library. Trees are of various shapes and sizes, artificial, live, stuffed, ceramic, wood and themed trees.

Holiday festival attendees vie for the trees through raffles, with the proceeds of all tickets sales donated to NYFS. Winning tickets are picked at 4:15, and winners do not need to be present to win.

Festival of Trees Chair Kim Verdries is still seeking participants for this year’s event. Anyone interested — businesses, organizations, school groups, Scouts, friends, families, et al — are encouraged to contact her for details at  kverdries@gmail.com.


Tickets On Sale Monday

Holiday Festival tickets will be available beginning Monday, November 4. Cost this year is $10 for individuals, and $20 for families (two adults, two children, with each additional child $5 each).

Tickets will be on sale at Everything Newtown, 61 Church Hill Road; C.H. Booth Library; and Newtown Savings Bank’s branches in Newtown (39 Main Street and 228 South Main Street, within Sand Hill Plaza); 68 Stony Hill Road in Bethel, and 99 Federal Road in Brookfield.

Local crafters are still needed for the Holiday Boutique; visit www.newtownyouthandfamilyservices/holiday-festival/ for details and a link to the vendor application. 

Newtown Youth & Family Services is dedicated to helping children and families achieve their highest potential. The nonprofit agency combines clinical services and positive youth development programs to provide a continuum of care to residents of the greater Newtown area.

NYFS is the designated mental health clinic for Newtown/Sandy Hook and is licensed by the Department of Children & Families as an Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic for Children and by the Department of Public Health as a Psychiatric Outpatient Clinic for Adults and as a Facility for the Care or Treatment of Substance Abusive or Dependent Persons. NYFS is accredited by the Council on Accreditation.

To find out more about NYFS or the Holiday Festival, call 203-270-4335 or visit www.newtownyouthandfamilyservices.org.


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