PEORIA, IL -- On the 19th day before Christmas my husband said to me, 'Do what you will, I will watch football on TV.' (Sing it to the tune of 'On the First Day of Christmas....')
And so I enjoyed the Splendor of Christmas Past 2015, presented by the Peoria Historical Society, a tour of six historic homes in Peoria, all wonderfully decorated for the holidays.
It was fabulous. Here's a partial list of the displays: gorgeously decorated Christmas trees with themes; historic costumes, some worn by hosts and hostesses; dinner tables elaborately set; Union soldiers, musicians, historic photos and documents; every room in every house decorated with trees, wreaths and other Christmas themes; a display of whiskey bottles from spirits once manufactured in Peoria; and so much more.
If I had to pick a favorite it would be the Pettengill-Morron House Museum, 1212 W. Moss Ave. But all were terrific, each in their own way.
Be sure to see this tour next year.
After seeing all the homes, I then went to the GAR Hall to hear the actor Doug Day do a reading from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. That's become an annual event, at the historic GAR Hall, 416 Hamilton Blvd. A Christmas tea was included, drinks and snacks actually, all very tasty.
It was a benefit for the Central Illinois Landmarks Foundation.
Peoria's historic heritage is so precious, and should be protected and cherished.
How can this day be topped? Well, next Sunday, Dec. 13, at 2:30 pm the Sing-It-Yourself-Messiah takes place, this year at Trinity Lutheran Church, a lovely historic church at 135 NE Randolph. This is always a fine classical music event, with professional soloists and an orchestra.
I can even sing the Messiah, as I learned it in high school -- a public high school in Dallas, Texas. (That was before religion was banished from the public schools --something I support except for music.)
After next Sunday what's left? Stay tuned.
-- Elaine Hopkins