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Goodridge Center Festival of Trees launches during First Friday York

Rebecca Klar
York Dispatch

As the holiday season approaches, decorated trees will fill the halls of the Goodridge Freedom Center starting Friday, Nov. 2, as part of First Friday's festivities. 

From 4 to 8 p.m., a little more than 20 "image" themed trees will be on display  to kick off the third annual Festival of Trees at the museum, at 123 E. Philadelphia St. 

Mark and Debbie DeBowes of Red Lion decorate their "American Flag" tree with patriotic ornaments at the Goodridge Freedom Center Friday, Nov. 3, 2017. The two volunteered to design the tree for the Goodridge Festival of Trees at the center kicked off later in the day. Sixteen decorated trees are among the 24 holiday exhibits at the historical house. The center will open additional times for the public to view the festival. It will be open Thursday, Nov. 16 and Tuesday, Nov. 21 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; First Friday, Dec. 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.;  and Thursday, Dec. 7 and Tuesday, Dec. 12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bill Kalina photo

Volunteers used the "image" theme broadly, with themes ranging from a Nativity tree to a kaleidoscope tree, said museum director Kelly Summerford. 

There's also a Victorian-themed tree, to honor the era in which the museums' namesake lived. 

William Goodridge, the abolitionist and York businessman who lived in the house-turned-museum, is recognized as being one of the first people in York to bring in and decorate a Christmas tree in the 1850s, Summerford said. 

"He and his children decorated it and people came throughout the parlor to visit the tree," he said. "So we're keeping that spirit by allowing people to come in and view the trees." 

The Festival of Trees will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays through November and December.

Admission costs $1 for students and seniors and $3 for adults.

More:New Goodridge center photo exhibit is the first of its kind

More:Century-old Voni Grimes Gym 'regifted' to York City community

More:York Community Christmas Tree to arrive Tuesday

First Friday music: Line dancing will wind down this year's outdoor First Friday festivities in Continental Square. 

Continental Square performances will return in May. 

There also will be musical performances in the square.

From 5 to 6 p.m., 2 Bad Cats will take the stage.

At 6:15 to 7:45 p.m., Downtown Inc's own events manager Mylea Thompson will perform. 

Thompson is typically the "architect of First Friday," said communications and marketing  director Andrew Staub. 

Thompson said she typically works and plays at the same time during First Friday, usually participating in games with kids and adults. 

"This is just a different way of work and play," she said. 

Thompson is a professionally trained vocalist. In addition to classical songs, Thompson will sing popular hits, Broadway tunes — and throw in a couple of jazz songs, she said. 

More First Friday events: While in Continental Square enjoying performances, residents are invited to take part in a joint effort between Downtown Inc and York County Food Bank in a "Stuff the Truck" food drive. 

More:York County Food Bank aims to 'Stuff the Truck' on First Friday

All donations will benefit the food bank's Give A Meal program that will help feed 1,600 families this holiday season. 

Cherie Anne Designs, 48 W. Philadelphia St., will celebrate its expanded space with a tea tasting bar, including a hot toddy cocktail and a cold tea spritzer. Customers will get free take-home tea samples. 

Pippi's Pen Shoppe, 146 W. Philadelphia St., will be celebrating First Friday with specials and giveaways as it happens to also be National Fountain Pen Day. 

Check out the newly renovated Capitol Theatre during a free screening of "How to Train Your Dragon" at 6:30 p.m. at the Appell Center for the Performing Arts, 50 N. George St.