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An 'ornament' in the community

Christmas Pageant returns to North Syracuse Baptist Church

Looking for the holiday experience at no cost? Community members across Onondaga County have been flocking to the North Syracuse Baptist Church since 1993 to see one or more showings of the three-day Community Christmas Pageant event.

Although the event took a two-year hiatus, the show, named "The Ornament, A Musical Drama," will resume this year under the direction of longtime pageant coordinator Greg Hitchin.

"It's an opportunity to use organizational skills that God has given me to put out a great message at Christmas time," Hitchin said.

The church's pastor, Allan Travis, has already began "getting the word out" as he has been working on posters and communicating with media outlets to let the community know that the once-annual event is back.

"It's the return, if you would," Travis said. "It's back and we're more than excited to put on this event."

Travis said the "break" gave the church time to rethink where they "wanted to take the show," before they were up and running again.

This year's event will show at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday Dec. 11 and 12 and then at 4 p.m. Sunday Dec. 13 at the church's auditorium, located at 420 S. Main St. in North Syracuse. Tickets are free for all three shows.

The event is solely fueled by the community, hence the name "Community Christmas Pageant." From set design, making costumes, acting, singing, dancing, greeting event attendants or baking cookies for the post-pageant reception, people from all over the county come together to put on the holiday show, Travis said.

Since there are so many pieces to the puzzle, Travis said there are both youth and adults contributing to the show. He believes this is the reason why the audience is always diverse in age because of the range of people that are in the show or working on the set.

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