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Live nativity procession. Ocean Grove, New Jersey. c. 2000. By Paul Goldfinger. ©.  This event used to be held outdoors with a finish in the Auditorium Pavilion. Now it is held in the Great Auditorium.  The music is too happy to remain only in December., so Christmas in July is held in Tent Village each summer.

 

By Paul Goldfinger, MD, Editor @Blogfinger.net

 

When we first moved here part-time in 1998, we became acquainted with the Live Nativity event.  I never saw anything like it before.

I recall standing out in the cold waiting for the children and animals to appear.  There was a procession, and  this star bearer came by. She seemed as  if  she had appeared out of the mists of time  as in Brigadoon.   For a moment I felt I had experienced time travel.

Preserving the past is usually expressed in this town by the architecture. But other things occur which add life to the history, as you see in the photograph.

It’s important to continue those traditions whenever possible.   The live nativity is now indoors, but it seemed more authentic when we were breathing vapor out our nostrils while waiting in the cold for the two-humped camel, the wise men, the sheep and some shepherds to arrive.

 

SOUNDTRACK:  As a teenage musician I often took part in Christmas celebrations and concerts. We went caroling in the snow , and people tossed dollar bills out the windows of the garden apartments where we lived.

In school, Christmas music was a big deal, and I always have associated this holiday with beautiful music,  both classical and popular.

But this photograph seems to require something especially heart-felt and different from the usual carols, so here, although it is not actually a Christmas selection, it does seem to go with the photo.  It’s Puccini.—Paul Goldfinger

 

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