Posted: Tuesday, January 11, 2005

All women are invited to attend the Peninsula Take A Break "stress busters" luncheon from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Jan. 19 at the Solid Rock Conference Center.

Rebecca Byerly of Central Peninsula General Hospital will share how to wake up body mechanics during dark winter days and Renee Duncan will soothe stress away with song.

Ella Embree of South Africa will be the featured speaker. The cost of the luncheon is $8 and free child care is available. To make reservations, call Carolyn at 262-4214 or Linda at 262-4996.

Kenai River Folk Dancers will host a community contra dance from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday at Kalifornsky Beach Elementary School No partner is required, the atmosphere is smoke- and alcohol-free, and beginners are encouraged to come early and learn the dances.

Potluck refreshments are encouraged. For more Information, call 260-4171.

I wrote prior to my vacation about the tree lighting at Parker Park. I was fortunate to experience another one in St. Peters Square, Vatican, Rome. This ceremony brought monsignors, a cardinal and other officials to speak in the square. Overlooking all was the candle from the second window where Pope John Paul II was watching. With traditional religious Christmas carols sung in Italian it was a surprise to hear Bing Crosby's "White Christmas."

A very young girl came forward and turned the switch illumining the tree with gold lights.

Behind all this was a large area draped with burlap and there were craftspeople working behind the drape. This was the site for the annual commissioned nativity scene to be unveiled Dec. 24. In addition to the exterior nativity scene there was another in a chapel inside the basilica.

Everything had the finest details — the architecture, the pastries, the frames on artworks, the marbles and the mosaics. I didn't get to see the finished production, but from what I was able to see I knew it would truly be awesome.

This week's quote from Spenard Builders Supply is "America is great because she is good, if America ceases to be good America will cease to be great."

Joyce Cox can be reached by phone at 262-7616 or by email at

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