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Christmas Past
Santa Express to roll at open house
new slt ghosts USE THIS train
Darrell Rexwinkle, maintenance supervisor at the Barton County Historical Village stands next to the Golden Belt Express. This miniature train will be running Sunday for the museums winter open house, "Ghosts of Christmas Past." It will most likely be the last time the train runs until spring. - photo by Susan Thacker/Great Bend Tribune




"I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year." — Charles Dickens


The Ghost of Christmas Past is a cheerful spirit, at least in Charles Dickens’ "A Christmas Carol." At the Barton County Historical Village and Museum, staff and volunteers celebrate the season with the "Ghosts of Christmas Past" open house.

The annual event will take place from 1-4 p.m. Sunday at the museum, located just south of the Arkansas River bridge on U.S. 281 in Great Bend. Admission to the museum will be free, the rooms are decked with festive decorations and creches, and there will be entertainment throughout the day, said Beverly Komarek, executive director.

The Golden Belt Express, the miniature train that once carried children at Christmas Fantasy Village, has been restored and will be running. Between that and the live entertainment scheduled every 30 minutes, Komarek said she expects a large turnout. "I want to emphasize that there is ample parking at the back of the museum," she said, encouraging guests to "please follow the signs."

Seven area organizations and schools have decorated trees for the open house, and refreshments will be served. The gift shop will be open, Komarek said, and will be offering for sale copies of a new cookbook, "21 Years of Secrets from the Wheatland Cafe," published by Sally and Harold Bower and Darrell and Shannon Bower, owners of the Hudson restaurant and catering business. "These would make excellent Christmas gifts," she said.

Bob Button of Great Bend will demonstrate carving on Sunday. Button’s display of Plains Indian chiefs is displayed at the museum, but for his demonstration he will show some carving techniques he uses for other projects.

Scheduled entertainment includes:

1 p.m. – Prince of Peace parish church choirs

1:30 p.m. – Christmas Brass Quintet

2:10 p.m. – Central Kansas Piano Teachers League piano solos

2:40 p.m. – Nazarene Church Children’s Choir

3:20 p.m. – The McGilber Family Christmas music

Santa plans to visit and will listen to children’s requests. Pictures will be available.