Celebrating 20 Years of Dickens on the Square
The annual Christmas event in downtown Macomb is designed to evoke the look and feel of Victorian England.
That was especially true this year thanks to the damp, chilly, and foggy weather that enveloped the courthouse square Friday night and remained for much of the day on Saturday.
This year marked the 20th anniversary of Dickens on the Square. David Quesal of Macomb has taken part in 11 of them.
“I think it is a major contributor to really kick-starting the Christmas spirit in the community,” said Quesal, who entertained on the square with his jester puppet that he said is “…animated and expressive. He makes the kids laugh.”
Quesal was one of a number of people who dressed in replicas of Victorian-era clothing.
Others chose their worst wardrobe selections, hoping to win the first Ugly Sweater Extravaganza hosted by TJR Designs and Kiss Me Kate Studios.
Some businesses hosted special events. The Kozmic Game Emporium gave away prizes while hosting “Christmas Bingo” Saturday afternoon. “It’s bingo but with Christmas themes. So instead of ‘B-12’ it’ll be ‘B-Holly’ or ‘G-Eggnog,’” store owner Adam Kozlowski said with a laugh.
Douglas Menke of Roseville has portrayed Father Christmas all 20 years of Dickens on the Square. “There are some people who I interacted with in their early years as children who now I’m interacting with them as parents and they’re bringing their children. So we’re into multi-generational Dickens on the Square participants.”
43 decorated Christmas trees were featured in the 9th annual Festival of Trees. They included a couple superhero-themed trees and an upside down tree. The event hosted by the McDonough District Hospital Foundation was held at the West Central Illinois Arts Center. "All funds raised go to emergency services this year," said Vicky Wallen of the Foundation.