Town Crier: Holidays officially in full swing

MONTCLARION: December 3, 2010

Now that we’ve survived Black Friday and the gluttonous feast that is Thanksgiving, let the countdown for Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa (or fill-in-the-blank) begin. In our house, the tree is up, and it’s Day 3 of little chocolates on the Advent calendar. Meanwhile, I’m exercising furiously to fit into my red velvet leggings and sequin-studded top. I’ll be retiring my dancing cat Christmas sweater this year, after finding out my daughter wore it to the Tacky Holiday Garment Party at her college sorority. It hurts, but it’s time to move on.

CHRISTMAS KICKOFF: There’s no better way to ring in the season than with my favorite free Christmas concert at 8 tonight at the Ascension Cathedral (4700 Lincoln Ave). My good friend and fellow Montclarion columnist, Frosene Phillips, produces this gift to the community in memory of her father, Perry Phillips.

You’ll hear heavenly bells, traditional carols, Greek hymns and snippets from Handel’s “Messiah” with a full orchestra and several choirs. The showstopper is the spread of heavenly Greek desserts that the church ladies bake for the after-party.

TAKE A “BOUGH:” I hope you got to see the tap dancing trees shake their limbs last night. The annual Montclair Village Stroll was a treat for the senses. Mulled wine, strolling musicians and dazzling window displays go along way in promoting the holiday spirit of kindness and community.

Speaking of treats, I love the little pop-up books that hills artist Ray Marshall was to show last night at A Great Good Place for Books in Montclair.His newest creation is called Paper Blossoms — a coffee-table book that opens into a colorful bouquet of paper flowers. See pictures of his work at


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