GREENFIELD — Wintery weather didn’t keep Rudolph from guiding Santa’s sleigh, and it won’t keep Christmastide Celebration 2017 from happening either.
After last year’s bad weather iced out both afternoon and evening performances in 2016 — and sent one en-route performer to the hospital after a minor car accident — this year’s Christmastide returns to celebrate the spirit of the holiday season.
Christmastide Celebration, a holiday variety show, features music, dance and singing, on stage at 7 p.m. Friday in Fellowship Hall at Trinity Park United Methodist Church, 207 W. Park Avenue.
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Organized by Jerry Bell and sponsored by the Greenfield Sertoma Club, the Brandywine Wind — directed by Bell — headlines the evening.
The theme for this year’s Christmastide Celebration is “Our Christmas Special.” Bell explains it as a tribute to the televised holiday specials of the past.
Among the pieces to be played are a Christmas song made famous by the Beach Boys and holiday songs originally sung by the Carpenters, Andy Williams, Judy Garland and, of course, Bing Crosby. The musical walk down memory lane includes selections from the animated specials “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” The Brandywine Wind will also perform “Sleigh Ride,” a fan favorite, Bell said.
In addition to live music from the Brandywine Wind and the Brandywine Jazz Band, a group from Wilkerson Dance — led by Debbie Wilkerson will be on hand with a fan favorite of their own: a radio City Rockette-style snowflake kick-line performing to a medley of “It’s a Marshmallow World,” Let It Snow!” and “Happy Holidays.”
The evening includes locally known vocalists. Ted Jacobs, former drama director at Greenfield-Central High School; Pam Johnson, retired music teacher from Greenfield-Central Jr. and frequent performer with the Brandywine Wind, Anita Workman. The trio will join voices on jazz arrangements of “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year,” Sleigh Ride” and “White Christmas.” Workman will solo on “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “The Christmas Song.”
The holiday-themed event helps to raise funds for Santa’s Helpers, a Greenfield Sertoma effort dedicated to providing assistance to children who wouldn’t otherwise receive Christmas gifts.
Santa and Mrs. Claus will be hanging around for visits with the kids; photos with the jolly couple are $3.
Audience members attending Christmastide Celebration 2017 can take some Christmas spirit home with them. Sertoma has collected more than 90 pies from local restaurants and grocery stores to be sold for $8 each to raise money for Santa’s Helpers.
Bell’s vision for Christmastide Celebration is to someday have a holiday event in Greenfield that rivals the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra’s annual Yuletide Celebration at the Circle Theater in Indianapolis.
As performance time draws near, Bell keeps an eye on the weather. “Snow is not too bad, but the ice is horrendous.”
Christmastide Celebration 2017
7 p.m. Saturday
Trinity Park United Methodist Church
207 W. Park Avenue
$5 tickets available at Cynthia’s Hallmark, Hometown Comics or at the door