Winter Festivities Highlight Christmas at Gordon

For several days this past week, the Gordon community and beyond enjoyed beloved Christmas at Gordon festivities, old and new.

“We have such a unique opportunity to share the true, authentic spirit of Christmas with the greater North Shore community,” says Advancement Events Coordinator Heather Varela ’08.

Greeted by a warm fire, attendees were encouraged to roast marshmallows and make s’mores, or grab a drink from the hot chocolate and cider table. The A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel was decorated with projections of snowflakes and red and green lighting. Faux snow cascaded onto excited children as they waited in line for the horse-drawn carriage. While parents made wreaths in front of Phillips Music Center in a workshop hosted by the Singing Flower in Hamilton, MA, children made reindeer hats and paper snowmen in the Lion’s Den.

One of the new and highly anticipated events was the live nativity, entitled The Star. “As one of the largest Christian organizations in all of Massachusetts, we felt that a biblical rendition of a Christmas story was a non-negotiable,” Heather says. “We had to tell the story of the first Christmas, and tell it well.”

To carry out this mission, Gordon partnered with alumna Maia Mattson ’13 of Mattson Visual Design to build a set, and The 5th Wall, a Beverly-based theatre company, to feature a live nativity in which guests could follow the actors around to locations on campus as the story unfolded. Nick Blondell ’19 helped host guests to ensure that they understood the performance.

“It was really enjoyable to be a part of,” Nick shares. “I thought it was an interesting reimagining of the biblical narrative, and the production and scenic design was stellar, as was the acting.”

The two-night Christmas at Gordon event featured other performances on the stage in front of the A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel, including Hamilton-Wenham High School’s a capella group, Kings of the Beach, and Hamilton-Wenham School of Dance’s Allegro Dance Ensemble.

The performances continued inside the Chapel with the Gordon College Department of Music’s annual Christmas Gala. The Gala featured performances from the Gordon College Children’s Choir, College Choir, Men’s Choir, Women’s Choir, the Gordon College Symphony Orchestra and the Wind Ensemble.

“Christmas at Gordon was incredible this year,” says Clare Mulvihill ’20. “I especially appreciated the range of events that were offered—my favorite was definitely the Gala! I loved gathering with hundreds of people to celebrate the coming of Christ together.”

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By Megan Harvey ’19, communication arts