Kringle IV in 2007 was a wonderful blend of the familiar and the new!
Haycock Historical Society's Event team outdid themselves preparing for the fabulous Kringle experience in 2007. Having left the comfort of a roomy farmhouse with all the modern amenities, it was quite a challenge to give a church hall that same cozy feeling of a home for a weekend, but by all accounts they succeeded. Behind each wall was an adventure for the eyes, brimming with paintings, sculptures, photographs, ceramics, quilts, jewelry, pillows, stationery, toys, home decor items, live poinsettias, greens, and so much more. It is the only show of its kind to gather solely juried LOCAL artists and handcrafters as participants. With so much to offer, and knowing the show would reflect and support the community in so many ways, it was bound to be a success.
Calvin Ruth a watercolor artist and teacher who lived nearly all of his 87 years in neighboring Quakertown borough was the featured artist at Kringle this year. 35 watercolors of Haycock area homes, schools and barns were offered for sale. [Over the years, Calvin has painted thousands of watercolors of architecturally significant homes in our area. Often the scenes were repeated in different seasons and years apart. Because of this and his meticulous record keeping, it is possible for historians to note the changes to our area over the last 50 years.]
Kringle offered many great books authored by local residents, including Lynda Gene Rymond, a Haycock resident children's book author who just recently released her newest book, "Oscar and the Mooncats" Thomas Moll, a Quakertown resident offered his book, Families of Haycock Township, Bucks County" which chronicles the Pennsylvania German history of our township through family names.
Both authors were present for book signings.
Our gracious hosts, the Bucks County Latvian Baptist Church offered a kiosk devoted to the Latvian culture and history. Women from the church wore the traditional native costumes which would have denoted to what sector or clan they were from. The beautiful costumes would have been worn on special occasions such as weddings or holiday gatherings. Church member and former Haycock Resident, Juris Ukstins offered signed copies of his father's journal which he translated into a book, "Our Daily Bread". [The book poignantly follows the footsteps of the Ukstins family as they fled their native Latvia, escaping from Russian tyranny during WW II to become "DP's", (displaced persons). Their saga ended in our Haycock Township where they eventually found sponsorship and settled.] Proceeds from the book as well as sales of donated amber jewelry were directly donated to the aging Latvian ministers living in post-communist Latvia.
Of course, the secret ingredient to Kringle's success is the music. Our native musicians, (all distinctive, - all fabulous) play non-stop live music for the entire event. Any day visitors could hear exquisite piano or violin virtuosos or a cheery balladeer singing Christmas carols. Shoppers could stop and listen, or browse and enjoy as they roamed the shoppe. Haycock Historical Society is blessed to have had Gordon Allen, Steve Applegate, Leah Augstroze, Ed Bauer, Jonnie Handschin, Rich Laughlin and Steve Wysocki as repeat volunteer performers each year. This year, the Latvian choir joined in with traditional songs sung in native Latvian.
If all of that were not enough, the hospitality kitchen offered treats of both native Latvian foods and the more traditional hot, cocoa, cookies and holiday treats.
Haycock Historical Societies 2007 Limited Edition Commemorative Plates created by Pottery Artist, Denise Wilz, (this year featuring the Latvian Baptist Church) were available for sale.
In all, 5 Raffle Baskets, filled with gifts and certificates from local businesses, valued at $100.00 each were offered in the three-day raffle. Dennis Gerhart, a local architectural artist and draftsman offered the only signed Pen and Ink reproduction of his commissioned piece depicting the local Applebachsville Hotel in the 1800's in a silent auction. The high bid was $150.00!
Once outside, visitors could take a ride through Applebachsville in a horse drawn carriage for a nominal $4 capturing the feeling of what it might have been like in days gone by, courtesy of member Greg Seifert of nearby Mountain Pride Farms.
Hopefully, Kringle IV was an experience visitors will remember dearly and enjoy as much as those who arranged it!
Director, Kringle Christmas Shoppe
VP, Haycock Historical Society