Woolwich & Wellesley Township's Local Community Newspaper | Elmira, Ontario, Canada
Help
Follow

A little more local for your inbox.

Seven days. One newsletter. Local reporting about people and places you
won't find anywhere else. Stay caught up with The Observer This Week.

Enter your email to subscribe. Unsubscribe anytime. We may send you promotional messages.
Please read our privacy policy.

Very much in the spirit of Christmas

When you walk up to Marilyn Hartung’s Wellesley home you feel as though you have been transported to a Christmas wonderland, even without any snow on the ground.

Coming up the front walkway, you are greeted by garlands, Christmas deer, lights, carols and more. She begins the decorating process weeks in advance, and says she just decorates however the mood strikes her. One highlight of the tour around her festive holiday home is the Elvis room. The King of rock ‘n’ roll is looking down on visitors, seemingly wishing them a Merry Christmas, while a themed Christmas tree rotates in the background, carrying a large selection of Elvis ornaments and you can even spot a pair of glasses with those signature side burns attached. Part of the display stays up all year round.

Marilyn Hartung’s Bamberg home displays her fondness for Christmas decorating. Her dining room, for instance, is decked out in a Victorian theme, reflecting the holidays as they were a century ago.[Liz Bevan / The Observer]
Marilyn Hartung’s Bamberg home displays her fondness for Christmas decorating. Her dining room, for instance, is decked out in a Victorian theme, reflecting the holidays as they were a century ago. [Liz Bevan / The Observer]
“I just love Elvis. There is more in the attic. I need another room,” she said, adding that professional Elvis impersonators have been through her house to share in her love for the hip-gyrating legend. “There is just everything that I have collected over the years. Anybody that comes in, especially the men, they have to try on the Elvis glasses with the sideburns. My husband isn’t as crazy about him as I am. Now, the tree is all Elvis ornaments, and some of them play (his hits).”

Her inspiration for going all out on decorations in her home is Hartung’s mother. Every year, her family decorated to the rafters.

“My mother always decorated,” she said, adding that the holiday holds something special for her. “She would decorate the house and I’ve always loved Christmas. There is something that just inspires me and once I start, I just can’t stop. I am addicted to Christmas.”

Making your way through the living room, guests are in for a treat in more ways than one. The Victorian-themed dining room invites tour guests to take a seat and munch on some of the traditional sweets and snacks from the early 20th century, including nuts, clementines, ribbon candy and much, much more. The small tree, tucked in the corner of the dining area is covered and surrounded by homemade chatchkies, some made by her mother, some by her sisters.

“The whole table is from 1914,” she said, mentioning the plum pudding, wick cutters, turtle soup, oil lamps and mince pies. “This is what they did when Queen Victoria reigned. The pudding was always stirred from east to west, because that is the way the wise men came. There would be fruit, lots of fruit. Especially pineapple – if you have a pineapple, that means welcome and good luck.”

The house is welcoming, and welcome Hartung does. She gives private tours for friends and local groups to come and share in her hard work and dedication to the Christmas holiday, with decorations on every surface.

“I want to extend the love of Christmas to my friends and the different groups I am in,” she said during a tour of her home. “I have high tea with the girls, I volunteer at the theatre, and I have church people. I just want them to come and see the house and donate to the food bank.”

When guests are greeted at the door, there is a large box that fills up more than once before the holiday season is over. Whether it is canned goods or a little bit of cash, it all goes to the local food bank.

“Last year, we took in four big boxes and money,” she said. “It gets people in the spirit.”

A little more local for your inbox.

Seven days. One newsletter. Local reporting about people and places you
won't find anywhere else. Stay caught up with The Observer This Week.

Enter your email to subscribe. Unsubscribe anytime. We may send you promotional messages.
Please read our privacy policy.

Total
0
Shares



Related Posts
Read the full story

Putting time in a bottle

Fred Ball has been using his metal detector to find treasure or old artifacts for more than 30…
Read the full story

It’s hot apple pie writ large

The sweet smell of cinnamon and apples filled the building as volunteers placed homemade pies into white boxes,…
Total
0
Share