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Pentangle’s hosts events for Wassail Weekend

Photo courtesy of Pentangle Arts Council
Pentangle Arts Council hosts several events during Woodstock's Wassail Weekend, including their annual House Tour. Join the events Dec. 8 & 9 in the village of Woodstock.


The 11th Annual Holiday House Tour, Pentangle Arts Council's biggest fundraiser of the year, will brighten up Wassail Weekend on Dec. 8 with the festively decked halls of six beautiful historic homes in the heart of Woodstock Village. This year's House Tour has a few new twists that are sure to make one of Woodstock's most beloved events even better this December.

This year, the House Tour will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8. These earlier hours will enable our visitors and residents to enjoy the lovely Village homes, and then walk down to the wonderful Wassail Parade that starts at 2 p.m. In addition, this timing syncs in perfectly with our new Wassail Tea at 2:30 p.m. and 4:15 p.m. at the Great Hall in St. James Church, featuring a wide array of confections and a special Wassail brew. Tickets for the Tea and the House Tour (or a convenient package of the two) are available at www.pentanglearts.org or by calling 802-457-3981.

(Want even more Wassailing on Saturday? The teatimes are perfect for pairing with one of the performances of The Ten, an annual a cappella feature at the First Congregational Church at 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. that day.)

Then, on Sunday, Dec. 9, the Annual Messiah Sing will once again conclude the festive Wassail Weekend, at 4 p.m. at Our Lady of the Snows Catholic Church. It also marks the final performance of Pentangle's 2012 Chamber Music Series.

Celebrated violist Scott Woolweaver will lead a talented group of 10 instrumentalists and four soloists, focusing on the Christmas portions of the famous oratorio. The singers are soprano Erin Nafziger, alto Elizabeth March Hurley, tenor Frank Levar, and baritone Keith Kibler. The event is free, with a suggested $10 donation.

The Messiah Sing has been filling the Wassail air with holiday joy for the past 28 years, every December. The late Father William Gallagher, the founder of this event, asked Woolweaver to conduct this thrilling performance of Handel's Messiah for the first time in 1985, and he has led the event nearly every year since then. Woolweaver said it is the perfect way to ring in the holiday season.

It has become at tradition at the Woodstock event for the audience to sing the choruses - all are welcome to join in, and our local community vocalists have become quite an accomplished part of this spectacular event. Members of the public may bring their own librettos, or there will be some copies for sale at the event.

For more information about the House Tour or the Annual Messiah Sing, visit www.pentanglearts.org or call 802-457-3981.