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Bulletin board: Christmas at Joanna offers 19th century holiday experience

The annual Christmas at Joanna observance is set for Dec. 1-3 at Joanna Furnace in Robeson Township. The event, to be held from 5 to 9 p.m. on Dec. 1 and from 4 to 9 p.m. on Dec. 2 and 3, offers visitors a chance to experience what Christmas was like in 1873.

There will be reenactors at the site, and guests are encouraged to interact with them. Victorian dancing will take place in a large, heated tent. The Hay Creek Valley Gold Band and Hay Creek Dancers will perform, with guests invited to participate.

There will be a roaring bonfire next to a stage where community organizations will perform. The Belsnickel will make appearances as well.

Other highlights include wagon rides, a kids craft workshop, face painting, Christmas Light Maze, tours of the historic buildings, a vintage train display, a craft market and a variety of festival foods.

Admission is $10 for adults, Children 12 and under get in free.

Joanna Furnace is located 3 miles north of Morgantown off Route 10. Look for signs and enter by turning on Furnace Road. To learn more, visit, friend Hay Creek Valley Historical Association on Facebook or call 610-286-0388.

Holiday program

The Leesport Area Historical Society presents a holiday program on Monday, Nov. 27, at 7 p.m. in Bethany EC Church, 308 Main St. Mike Jesberger will discuss the customs and traditions of Christmas in the midst of the challenges of the tragic Civil War. Christmas served as an escape but also a reminder of our divided country and separation from loved ones. Parking is available in the rear of the church.

Farmers market

The Antietam Valley Farmers Market is holding a Thanksgiving week market tonight from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Antietam Valley rec building in Carsonia Park, 905 Byram St., Pennside.

The event will feature some familiar vendors along with a few new ones, food, dessert and music.

The market year concludes with events on Dec. 4 and Dec. 18.

Printing service

Library users can print items straight from their laptop or mobile device at any Berks County Public Libraries location thanks to Princh software.

For years, all libraries in Berks County have offered cost-efficient printing services by signing into a library computer with a library card. With Princh, anyone with a photo or document on their mobile device can submit a print order to the library by scanning a QR code, downloading the Princh app or utilizing a browser link from within the library.

“Over the past few years, we’ve taken steps to improve the library user experience, particularly when it comes to technology,” said Jeff Smilko, technology coordinator for Berks County Public Libraries. “Users can now print from their library through this stream-lined method without needing to connect to a library computer first.”

Smilko noted that Princh offers a convenient printing method that can be done with just a few simple steps.

For more information, visit a participating library or go to

Spirit on Tap

Spirit on Tap will hold a community forum on immigration and homelessness on Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the DoubleTree by Hilton, Reading.

The forum is an open dialogue on the state of affairs regarding immigration, both globally and locally. It will cover various ethnicities in transition, including the latest from Gaza, history of merging with native populations, current refugee status in the world, what is being done locally to address the migrant situation and other relevant issues. Community leaders are welcome to share how their agencies are helping to alleviate homelessness, much of which results from this social displacement.

Michael Toledo, president and CEO of Centro Hispano in Reading, will discuss the connections between faith and Latino immigration to the United States that are deeply rooted in the values of compassion, hospitality and solidarity that many faith traditions uphold.

Spirit on Tap’s purpose is to encourage theological discussion, explore alternative views, and stimulate dialogue around issues of faith, spirituality, and social justice. There is no charge and all are welcome.

Grief support group

The sudSSpirit grief support group for those who have experienced the sudden, unexpected death of a spouse or significant other will meet Tuesday at 6 p.m. at the Exeter Community Library. It is free, and no registration is required.

For more information, call 717-866-2401 or email or see

Bible discussion

“A Peculiar Book: The Strangeness of the Bible and How It Actually Works” will be the topic for discussion at Soul Café on Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. at West Lawn United Methodist Church, 15 Woodside Ave. The discussion will be introduced and facilitated by the Rev.Harry L. Serio.

For more information, email

Music at Yocum

Miss Maybell, vocalist, accompanied by husband Charlie Judkins on piano, will present a program of ragtime, traditional jazz and blues on Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Yocum Institute for Arts Education, 3000 Penn Ave., Spring Township.

Tickets are $20 in advance purchased from or $25 at the door. Proceeds will be split between the institute and the Wilson High School Scholarship Fund. Student musicians with school ID will be admitted free.

Native American history

The Wyomissing Public Library will offer a program Saturday about Native American history by Amanda Funk, a citizen of the Potawatomi Nation.

Funk, co-founder and executive director of the Widoktadwen Center for Native Knowledge, will discuss the history of Native Americans in Berks County, including their removal from their ancestral lands.

The library is offering this free program in observance of national Native American Heritage Month.

The library is located at 9 Reading Blvd., Wyomissing. Reservations are requested; email or call the library at 610-374-2385.

Sing Messiah

The 45th Annual Sing Messiah will take place on Sunday, Nov. 26, at 3 p.m., at the Lincoln Park Community United Methodist Church, 1 Carlisle Ave.

The Berks Chamber Orchestra, a subgroup of the Reading Pops Orchestra, will accompany guest soloists Katherine Aergood, Maria Damore, John Coakley and Milo Morris under the direction of William Snelling. The audience is invited to sing the choruses.  Free will offering requested. Sponsored in part by the Music Performance Trust Fund of the American Federation of Musicians.

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Source: Berkshire mont

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