By Henry Eckels
While most Baylor students are hunkering down to study for final exams, there will be plenty of reason to get out of the library leading up to the holidays.
Baylor is hosting several Christmas related events over the course of the next few days, including a to-scale model train exhibition, a traditional retelling of the story of Christ and a guest appearance by Santa Claus.
Christmas in the Village is an event being hosted from noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 14 at the Gov. Bill and Vara Daniel Historic Village at the Mayborn Museum Complex. Rebecca Nall, the changing exhibits manager for the Mayborn Museum Complex, said the event will feature various Christmas activities from the 1890s. Nall said this is the first time the Mayborn has hosted Christmas in the Village.
“The Mayborn went through some renovations in 2011,” Nall said. “People will be able to participate in lots of Christmas crafts, caroling and storytelling.”
The event is free for Baylor students. Non-student tickets cost $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and $4 for children.
Nall said the event would be especially enjoyable for kids.
“Santa Claus will be at the event from 1 to 3 p.m.,” Nall said.
Baylor’s Honors College will be hosting the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, a service that traces the story of the Bible from Adam and Eve to Christ’s birth.
Dr. Todd Buras, faculty master of the Honors Residential College, said the event is an Advent service for Christians preparing for the coming of Christ.
“The festival is a tradition in the Honors Residential College, though anybody is welcome to come,” Buras said. “The service will feature teachers reading nine lessons from Scripture, each interspersed with students singing carols.”
He said the festival is a very emotional event that portrays a powerful message.
“The festival is an incredibly emotional and moving experience for all who are involved,” Buras said. “Students lead the music for the carols, and their performances are always powerful.”
The festival is hosted at 6:30 p.m. Sunday at Memorial Chapel in Memorial Residence Hall.
A week before Christmas in the village, the Mayborn will host the Central Texas Area Model Railroaders for a seventh year.
The exhibit will be hosted at the Mayborn from Saturday to Jan. 5.
Nall said the event will feature to-scale model trains set up in a huge room.
“There will be five scale models of trains moving through a 5,000 square foot room,” Nall said. “The room is decorated with castles and other buildings alongside the railroads.”
Cypress junior Aaron Gladstone said he thinks students should not forgo these Christmas events just to study for finals.
“Most students around this time of year will be studying for finals, and while that’s important, it shouldn’t eclipse the joy surrounding this time of year,” Gladstone said. “Students who celebrate Christmas should especially go to the festival on Sunday, because the story of Jesus is what this season is really about.”
New Ipswich junior Zack Traffie said he believes the slew of Christmas events coming to campus will bring the encouragement students need at this time of year.
“Everybody is really stressed right about now, so it’s encouraging to see all these holiday events giving us the inspiration to pull through,” Traffie said. “They’re like the light at the end of the tunnel.”