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Alice Lloyd College hosted its annual Christmas Pretties Dinner at 5pm on Sunday, December 3rd. For the occasion, ALC and JBS faculty, staff, and children gather in the Hunger Din for a meal and some Christmas festivities. After dinner was served on Sunday, the children gathered with JBS Dean Amanda Clark and Voices of Appalachia Choir members to sing Christmas carols.

While the group harmonized together, bright, flashing lights caught their attention through the window outside. A Pippa Passes fire truck had arrived carrying a surprise guest, Santa Claus! Mr. and Mrs. Claus had traveled all the way from the North Pole to visit the children along Caney Creek, but they ran into some trouble with their sleigh and were rescued by the Pippa Passes Fire Department.

Santa greeted each child one by one and gave them each a present and a warm hug. For the early gift, he made each child promise to be good and go to sleep early on Christmas Eve while he makes his yearly rounds. Thankfully, ALC’s maintenance department fixed Santa’s sleigh and he was able to return to the North Pole with Mrs. Claus, his reindeer, and his elf helpers!

ALC’s Christmas Pretties Dinner is part of the larger Christmas Pretties Program organized each year by the College. The Christmas Pretties Program began when Alice Lloyd’s mother, Ella Geddes, discovered that many local families were too poor to celebrate Christmas with gifts, so she wrote to her friends in Boston, who sent back “pretties” for Mrs. Geddes to give to the local families. The Program has withstood the test of time as ALC still receives donations towards gifts for Appalachian children that our student workers wrap, sort, and distribute to area elementary schools.