Amidst the hustle and bustle of preparing for Christmas Day, area residents can make time Saturday and Sunday to remember the true miracle of Christmas-the birth of the Christ child.
Two daily performances of Sweetapple Farm's 12th annual Live Nativity will be held at 6:20 and 7:20 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, where the story of Christ's birth will be told and sung by local church members and audience participants through traditional hymns and Bible readings.
"It's just peaceful, and it just reflects on what (Christmas) is all about," said Myla Mitchem, 56, of Marietta, who has been to several live nativity scenes at Sweetapple Farm. "It's done in a barn, so what more appropriate thing is there?"
That barn element is part of what has drawn Veronica Way, 58, of Marietta, to the farm's live nativity for a dozen years.
"It's always cold out there, and it's a way for the community to see how Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus had to survive the elements of weather," Way said. "We take time to remember how fortunate we are and all the people who are homeless this time of year."
Visitors making the trip to Sweetapple Farm in Vincent will be treated to the festive and sparkling sight of thousands of lights that make the farmstead twinkle with a cheery Christmas welcome.
If you go
Sweetapple Farm Live Nativity
What: 12th annual Live Nativity scene featuring local church members.
When: Shows at 6:20 and 7:20 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Farm opens at 6 p.m.
Where: Sweetapple Farm, 149 Sweetapple Road, Vincent, Kestermeier cattle barn. Barn unheated, dress appropriate to the weather.
Cost: Free, with donations accepted.
For information: 678-7747 or sweetapplefarm.com
"We'll have luminaries up the driveway and the farm buildings will be outlined with lights," said Mona Barrett, manager of Sweetapple Farm.
Adults and children from Living Faith United Methodist Church and Lighthouse Baptist Church, both of Vincent, will be costumed as Mary, Joseph, the Three Wisemen and shepherds, Barrett said.
Audience members will be invited to join them, outfitted as shepherds and angels.
The live nativity will be held in Sweetapple Farm's Kestermeier cattle barn, just west of the main market on the farm grounds, where the lowing of cows and calves, the bleating of goats and the sounds of other farm animals will welcome the newborn Christ child.
"The small goat is very tame," Barrett said. "People can see her as she walks inside the barn."
Traditional songs during the event will include "We Three Kings," "Joy to the World" and "Silent Night."
"At both performances Saturday night, a person who does sign language will sign the song 'Silent Night,'" said Barrett.
In a nod to the modern, Santa-themed side of the Christmas holiday, "A visitor will join us from the North Pole, who will bring his wife," Barrett said.
To warm wintry fingers, the main market will serve hot chocolate, steaming cider, coffee, aromatic caramel lattes and more throughout both evenings.
Locally grown items like maple syrup, whole hog sausage and grass fed beef will also be available for sale at the market.
Donations will be accepted at each performance, with proceeds donated to the Western Washington Food Pantry in Vincent, said Barrett.
For more information about the event, call 678-7747 or go to sweetapplefarm.com or Facebook.com/SweetappleFarm.