Throughout the month of December, The Tribune-Democrat ran photos and stories of favorite decorations as submitted by our readers.
Some decorations were featured on our front page. Click here to see the pics we didn't publish.
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Janice Selak | Johnstown
“My late husband, Joseph J. Freidhoff, made this nativity for our first Christmas together in 1955,” wrote Janice Selak of Johnstown.
Helen Teno | Portage
“These ceramic nativity figures were made for me by my daughters Kathy, Karen, and Teresa, when they were in high school back in the year 1974 which they painted and surprised me with them,” Helen Teno of Portage. “I put it up every year in my house. It's one of my favorite treasures.”
Kelly Null | Johnstown
“This hand tree was created by my parents when I was very young out of the handprints of my family members,” wrote Kelly Null of Johnstown. “We hang it up on our door every year and I have occasionally added new ornaments.”
Gary & Elaine Kinley | Richland
“This little angel has adorned our Christmas tree, every year since 1960, 52 years,” Gary and Elaine Kinley of Richland Township. “She was on our first tree and continues to shine brightly for us every year.”
Pat McGlynn | Johnstown
“My mother, Alice McGlynn of Hastings, goes all out decorating for every season but especially for Christmas,” wrote Pat McGlynn of Johnstown. “This is just a small sample of some of her decorations. She has set up a Christmas village with all the buildings and many, many villagers on her coffee table in the living room. Through the years all of her 12 grandchildren and now her five great-grandchildren love to come to see Gram's decorations.”
Ernie Penatzer | New Germany
“About eight years ago I received a Christmas card with a picture of Santa elevating the flag. She said it reminded her of me,” wrote Ernie Penatzer of New Germany. “I kept drawing the Santa form a tiny picture on the card until it was the size of the picture. I cut it out of plywood and painted it. If I don’t put it out early everyone asks, ‘where is your Santa?’”
John & Sharon Gustkey | Johnstown
“Our children made these decorations in 1988,” wrote John and Sharon Gustkey of Johnstown. “They were ages 8, 7 and 6 years old. They are made from wooden ice cream spoons. (From little Dixie cups.) They surprised us Christmas day, giving us these as gifts. We cherish them so much. They are the first things hung and the last things taken down. And we reminisce of how much they mean to us.”
Bonne Camblin | Johnstown
“Christmas was always a very special time in our household due to my father being a pastor,” wrote Bonnie Camblin of Johnstown. “When my parents, Rev. Don and Shirley Sease, were married on June 22, 1951, one of the first things they did was to purchase a tree topper for their first Christmas tree. They purchased a silver foil Santa tree topper that would appear every Christmas at the top of our tree. As children, my brother, Tim, and I would anticipate his arrival when the tree was decorated. As we grew up, married and had our own families, we often joked about Grammy’s tattered foil Santa. No matter what ornaments came and went, my mother never strayed from using that special tree toppper - a symbol of their first Christmas as a married couple. Today both our parents are gone, yet their old foil Santa now sits atop my family’s Christmas tree, reflecting the love our parents so generously bestowed upon all the members of our families throughout their lifetime.”
Dorothy M. Boyer | Stoystown
“This is a collection of approximately 15 years of Snow Babies representing memories of friends’ gifts, trips, visits and purchases at Christmas,” wrote Dorothy M. Boyer of Stoystown. “There are 78 and no two are alike. It has become a conversation piece and reminiscing for friends and family.”
Jean Benedict | Johnstown
“I’ve been collecting salt and pepper shakers for 60 years or more,” wrote Jean Benedict of Johnstown. “This year, I thought I would decorate with my Christmas ones. Every year I do put ones out but not all and every year I get more. I especially treasure the ones my sister got me on their honeymoon 55 years ago. She got them in New Jersey.”
John Buser | Boswell
“We lived in Southmont for many years and our house was on Cheney Street high on a hill and we had the Noel where it was visible for all to see,” John Buser of Boswell. “The Noel is about 53 years old. The wreath we made from the grape vines we found in the woods nearby and is about 42 years old. We live in the country now. Our children are all grown and have moved elsewhere but coming home for Christmas and seeing these decorations are very meaningful for them.”
- Local News
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Fugitive returning – eventually – to Somerset jail
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One person was sent to the hospital Tuesday after a vehicle slammed into a utility pole in Johnstown leaving some customers without power, authorities said. The one-vehicle crash happened on Bridge Street in the Moxham section of Johnstown at 1:14 a.m., fire Chief Anthony Kovacic said. When firefighters arrived, they found utility wires down, he said. Denny Platt, area manager for Penelec, said 402 customers initially lost power, including North American Hoganas High Alloys, a business which is located on Bridge Street. Power was restored to all but nine customers by 3:30 a.m., he said. The remaining nine customers are expected to have power restored by 1 p.m., Platt said.
Easter Seals’ branches join, add services
A June 4 merger of two independent Pennsylvania Easter Seals nonprofit organizations has led to an increased service area and expanded programs, Johnstown Division Director Annette Shearman said.
Inmate’s hearing delayed
The first court appearance by a death-row inmate who police and many witnesses say slammed a Cambria County attorney in the face more than a month ago is again delayed.
Bedford trial set to open
A man charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of a western Bedford County man he called his best friend will attempt to convince a jury that he should not be held responsible for his death.
Richland bash sheds Thunder ties
Although no longer officially part of Thunder in the Valley, Richland Bike Bash provides another motorcycle-themed venue for music, food and fun while supporting the Richland Township Fire Department.
Pool ’n Pork festival adds new activities
Each year, the Nanty Glo Pool and Park along Lincoln Avenue tries to draw a portion of the leather-clad throngs speeding to Johns-town’s annual Thunder in the Valley event.
Police roundup: 2nd man sought in diamond heist
Richland Township police are looking for a second suspect in connection with a jewelry store robbery at The Galleria on Saturday.
In brief: West Taylor bridge project underway
Work to replace two structures that cross Wildcat Run and a tributary to Laurel Run on Cooper Avenue, Route 3041, in West Taylor Township began Monday.
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