Wood County Historical Center offers holiday tours for $5

City Editor and City Editor

Every Christmas season, Sandra Gerety tries to volunteer her time where she can.

This year, Gerety, who is a cook at Wood County Committee on Aging, participated in setting up an exhibit for the Wood County Historical Center’s Christmas Tours.

In about eight hours, Gerety and other co-workers gave the Alumni Room of the museum a touch of Christmas.

Gerety said the room was difficult to decorate with all the pictures, but they were able to make use of the mirrors and windows to reflect ornaments or add snowflakes and icicles.

“I like the challenge,” she said.

Gerety is in one local group out of 28 that decorated each room of the museum for the self-guided tours, which run from Dec. 8 to Dec. 21, said Kelli Kling, marketing coordinator for the museum.

The museum has done the tours since the mid 1980’s with a theme, Kling said. This year’s theme is Christmas carols, where groups decorate a room according to a song.

Gerety’s theme was “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

“We just want visitors to leave with a homey, relaxed feeling,” Gerety said.

Other themes range from “Polar Express” to “Jingle Bells” to “Silent Night.”

Mike McMasters, educating coordinator for the museum, said so much work goes into decorating the museum for the holidays that it has to close in November to accommodate the groups.

“There are boxes everywhere and everyone is running around decorating; it’s a lot of fun,” McMasters said.

McMasters said what attracts community members and students alike is the nostalgia they get from seeing the exhibits, such as the toy train tracks or the minature Christmas villages.

“Not all museums decorate for Christmas, so it’s unique here,” he said. “It looks different than in the summer and it gives people a new perspective of the museum.”

To Kling, the exhibit helps unify the community.

“I like that the whole community comes together to support the museum,” she said.

Participating in setting up the exhibit is like creating a new Christmas tradition, she said.

Tour admission is $5. For more information about the exhibit visit woodcountyhistory.org/pr_holidaytour.html.