Monday, November 29, 2010

Preservation Hall Elves Create Wreaths for Pageant

I know this sounds silly but the idea of creating a Christmas wreath made me feel giddy, like a little kid on show-and-tell morning. Excitement made my heart pound as I entered the Senior Center where a small band of elves was already unpacking wreath preparation paraphernalia. There were pretty ribbons and pine cones shaped like roses, ornaments, even a row of butterflies, all awaiting the imagination of volunteers, heaven for arts-and-crafts-type folks, in other words. Not having participated in wreath creation before, I brought my own objects of adornment, most of it collected on three Wellfleet beaches over the past few months. Inspired by what I had seen at the 2009 Preservation Hall Wreath Pageant, I had decided to do a message-wreath, because the occasional theme makes the event even more interesting. Mine would sport a Stop-Plastic-Pollution sign, painted in blue on a piece of driftwood. I laid out my beach junk on a table and glanced around.

“I would say watch the stuff you want to keep,” veteran wreath-maker Sharyn Lindsay advised as she began to prowl around the supply boxes.

Sharyn pounced on some fascinating wrapping material that had come in a box for the B&B last week, perfect for this type of activity. I was glad she would put the crinkly brown paper to use, recycling it. Everyone was working with a different type of decoration. I had begun braiding three New York Times bags. The main color of my wreath was to be blue.

“Everything she’s chosen is rosaries blessed by Pope Benedict the XVIth,” one elf chuckled as a friend began to weave beaded necklaces into fir branches.

Christmas music was playing in the background. Sharyn’s son Caleb acted as DJ while elf Tracy Plaut served hot cider and baked goods. I did not partake in the refreshments, too busy with my creation.

“This is like a party!” someone commented.

It was also serious business, creating wreaths that people will want to bid on and buy in support of Preservation Hall during Deck the Halls weekend, December 11-12. Our wreaths will raise precious money to help with the final costs of renovation.

Organizer Mark Gabrielle seemed to be everywhere. When the time came, he helped me affix a bit of broken Frisbee with a glue gun. Finally my wreath was finished. The whole process took over an hour and was FUN!

“It’s fantastic!” Sharyn Lindsay exclaimed.

Her wreath is really nice, too. Check it out!