Monday, December 02, 2013

Kicking Off Christmas at Boys Town

On December 1, 1917 Father Edward Flanagan opened Boys Town.

On December 1, 2013, Claire and I went over to Boys Town campus to note the event...and to celebrate Christmas.

First of all, we parked the car and listened to the end of the Broncos/Chiefs game on the car radio. Then we went inside the Boys Town Music Hall to watch a charming student production of “The Gift of the Magi.” It was the first time we had been in the Music Hall and we were very impressed. It's a large, comfortable and lovely facility. The place was soon close to full -- mainly students but also staff, families of students, and a few visitors from the general community like us.

The play was a musical version of the venerable O. Henry story and the stage was effectively set. There was one particularly good singer among the group and the other student-actors gave a pretty good performance. Most important, the message of "The Gift of the Magi" (always compelling) was clearly presented. Good job, troupe.
After the play, our old friend and pro-life colleague Fr. Val Peter led the packed house in singing Christmas carols. It was, as Boys Town so strives to create, a very warm, family atmosphere.

We then walked to the Village Circle where Santa Claus arrived in dramatic fashion — riding atop the Boys Town fire truck as it sped (with sirens blaring) down Heroes Boulevard! Later, after Santa had done some visiting, Fr. Peter coaxed him into getting with the rest of the program: "C'mon Santa, you're not running for office." Santa then knelt in front of the creche and Fr. Peter led the crowd in a prayer to Jesus. There was then a countdown, the tree was then lit up, the crowd cheered, and we all trekked over to the Great Hall to be served cookies and cocoa. 

It was a very fun and memorable evening, a great kickoff to the Christmas season.