Local News

December 5, 2012

Twelve Mile Christmas pageant: Continuing a tradition

TWELVE MILE — For more than four decades, residents of Twelve Mile have donned middle-eastern costumes each December for the town’s annual Christmas pageant. And Dale and Marian Skinner have had some part in the pageant for just as long.

The town’s 42nd annual Christmas pageant will take place Saturday and Sunday in its traditional location, Plank Hill Park on Ind. 16. The Skinners, lifelong residents of Twelve Mile, said they’re staying in the background this year, where Marian will bake cookies and help pageant participants change into costumes as needed.

They can’t be as involved this year because of their age and health — Dale is 80, Marian, 77 — but in the past they’ve taken part in just about every one of the pageant scenes.

They’re just two of about 300 volunteers that band together each year to put on the pageant, whether by baking sweets for the occasion, helping set up or being in one of the scenes.

“It is the beginning of my Christmas,” said Gail Byrum, pageant volunteer coordinator. “It all starts with the pageant and it just gets better from there.”

Several traditional Christmas themes come together in the drive-through pageant. Opening scenes show carolers, angels, elves in Santa’s workshop and an old-fashioned family Christmas gathering. Later on, a series of scenes depict the Christmas story narrated on storyboards, complete with a live donkey, sheep and other animals.

“The only thing that’s not real are the camels,” said organizer Kathy Buczkowski. Byrum noted that there will be a new animal at the manger scene this year, too.

Dale said he and Marian first got involved 41 years ago after his father, Everett Skinner, and two other community leaders started the pageant. Their sons grew up participating in the pageant, he added.

“One of our boys was talking the other day that his grandson wants to be in it this year,” said Dale.

“We’ve been every character at one time or another,” he continued, most recently playing the part of Santa and Mrs. Claus.

“We enjoy participating in the pageant,” chimed in Marian, “and like he said, at one time or another we were in everything.

“We’ve gotten too old to be the Mary and Joseph at the manger. I guess that’s when they moved us up to Santa Claus,” she added, laughing.

Their children started as shepherds. Many younger children begin as toddlers in the elves’ workshop, said Byrum.

Still others start out as little angels.

“I’ve been doing it since I was little,” said Noreen Brumett, who at 37 now has children in the pageant. “I was one of the little angels when I was, oh gosh, I started, probably in first grade.”

The Brumett children, now 10 and 9 years old, started out as little elves in Santa’s workshop. Wyatt, the oldest, will be a shepherd this year, and Bryn will follow in her mother’s footsteps as an angel.

“It’s a neat tradition and it makes the holidays get off to a good start, and remember what we’re celebrating and why it’s important to spend time together as a family,” said Brumett.

She and her husband Dave will be Santa and Mrs. Claus this year.

“We’ve never done that before so this’ll be something new,” Brumett said. “It’ll be fun. The kids will enjoy seeing us dressed up like that, I think.”

Of course, she added, there will be “no fooling them” about their parents’ real identity.

Other volunteers completed initial setup for the pageant on Saturday. A few more finishing touches will be added this weekend before the pageant opens.

Organizers expect 150 to 200 cars driving through each night.

“Ten years ago we actually asked ourselves, should we continue?” recalled Byrum. “And the comment was actually made, well Jesus lives on, so we shall continue. And that’s what we’ve done.”

The pageant will run from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Admission is by donation, which will go to the Salvation Army. More information is available on the Twelve Mile Christmas Pageant Facebook page.

Sarah Einselen is news editor for the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at or 574-732-5151.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Police Blotter: Aug. 1, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    August 1, 2014

  • Miami County struggles through computer shutdown PERU (AP) — A northern Indiana prosecutor has harshly criticized other officials in his county for not adequately dealing with computer problems that have effectively brought some business to a halt. Prosecutor Bruce Embrey said Miami County governme

    August 1, 2014

  • NWS-PT080114 Bow Fishing.jpg Man vs. fish: Niche sport takes bows, arrows to the water In the fight against Asian carp, local outdoors enthusiasts are increasingly turning to bowfishing — in which you don’t wait for the fish to come to you. You send an arrow straight to them.Bowfishing has become an increasingly popular sport according

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • 2nd annual bike ride slated Saturday WINAMAC — Dozens of bike riders will take over the Panhandle Pathway Saturday for the second annual Down and Back bike ride.The 44-mile trail begins in Winamac and extends all the way to near France Park in Kenneth. Kelly Hines, spokesperson for the

    August 1, 2014

  • Trial dates moved in Wagoner clinic drug case KOKOMO — Trial dates for seven of the eight people charged in the Wagoner Clinic prescription drug case have been moved to Oct. 3.Several of the suspects, including Marilyn Wagoner, the wife of Donald Wagoner, the former head of the clinics, were set

    August 1, 2014

  • Police Blotter: July 31, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    July 31, 2014

  • NWS-PT073114 Hopper2.jpg The right track: Logansport boy advocates railroad crossing safety

    It's not uncommon to see 12-year-old Ethan Hopper sitting in a lawn chair near his father's business on 18th Street in Logansport, his cell phone pointed at a locomotive heading down the nearby tracks. The engines make up a fascination modern technol

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos 1 Link

  • Cass Co. Community Foundation eligible for grant

    The Cass County Community Foundation is eligible to receive half a million dollars from Lilly Endowment Inc. as a matching grant at some point over the course of the next couple of years.Lilly Endowment announced the sixth phase of its Giving Indiana

    July 31, 2014

  • Locals: EPA delay request too late Logansport officials say while they appreciate a state executive’s request to delay new rules on coal power plants, its timing still requires pursuing a new power plant for the city.The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency published last month its Cl

    July 31, 2014

  • Supreme Court observers predict ‘wide open’ process of picking of next chief INDIANAPOLIS — State Supreme Court Chief Justice Brent Dickson surprised observers in June when he decided to step down after a brief tenure in the leadership post.Another surprise may be in store when his replacement is named.A seven-member panel of

    July 31, 2014

Featured Ads
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.

Should the U.S. impose a travel ban on three West African nations in response to a growing Ebola virus outbreak?

Not sure
     View Results