NORTH COHOCTON — It reminds us of a simpler time when we embrace other cultures, and their lovely holiday traditions.
For three years the Wells Family have brought us German traditions, and the German/American Christmas Market is a big success.
Olde Country Store and More Owner Jeff Wells said there was a steady flow of customers all weekend for the Third Annual German/American Christmas Market.
Wells said their Santa Claus is a big success every year as well.
“People tell me he is the real deal,” he said. “He is really great with the kids.”
The German/American Christmas Market is so well received that people ask a year in advance to be a part of this new tradition.
Wells noted there were some familiar faces, and new ones as vendors in the market on Dec. 2 and Dec. 3.
Among the new faces this year were some local illustrators, jewelry makers, stained glass makers, and the Naples Boy Scouts. Among some of the familiar faces were Wells’ nephew, Lem Clawson and Arbor Hill.
Wells said people have very fond memories of the store going back to the days it was a grocery store and candy store.
“My grandparents would stop in and shop here all the time,” he said. “My great-grandfather must have shopped here as well in the 1870s. It was an easier store to get too. This was a Pioneer Store back then. The first people in the area came to shop here for groceries, farm clothes, boots, tools, and anything else they needed. It reminds us how old this building is.”
If it weren’t for the previous owner, Jim Conrad, taking the important things home with him to Colorado the Wells Family wouldn’t have the things that make this store old-fashioned. Conrad was kind enough to give them back the wagon wheels, benches, and other items that make the store home.
Wells will be heading to Canandaigua VA soon to be a vendor for three days selling his Green Heart of the Finger Lakes merchandise. Luckily, most of the Finger Lakes have agreed to sell the products.
Trudy Morgan, owner of Trudy’s Beads and Buttons had her first ever experience at the German/American Christmas Market.
“I used to come here when there were antiques being stored up here,” she said. “This has always been known as a famous candy store. I would come here in the late 1970s and 1980s. My sisters like to come here when they visit.”
Morgan said she is thrilled the place reopened, because it was one of her favorite places.
“I love the old charm of small towns,” she said. “I was so happy when they reopened, because this is one of my favorite places.”
If you are interested in her handmade jewelry, quilts, table cloths, or bowl cozies contact her at 607-698-2295.
Morgan has also joined the We Wear HIstory group, and will be wearing a hand-sewn dress her mother made long ago.
Everett Davison of Naples Boy Scouts is working on his Boy Scouts Eagle Service Project. He has gotten 16 instruments so far to fix up and donate to the Wayland-Cohocton Music Department.
Davison and his family have made lovely birch tree ornaments, candle holders, and wreaths for the holiday spirit. All of the fund will go into the project, and anything left will be donated back to the school.
“We have gotten more instruments donated to us for the school,” he said. “I should be able to start the project in January. People have told me they love the project, and would’ve donated their instruments if they still had them.”
Davison will be working with his troop on the Percussion Cart for the music department in the start of the new year. He will accept instruments until the Spring. To contact him about instruments go to email@example.com or visit his Facebook at Way-Coh Play it Forward.
Davison said he has learned so many new skills he can take with him in life.
Lem Clawson of Lem’s Rustic Crafts and Gifts has reused wood on his family’s farm for a few years now. All of the wood comes from the family property in Naples.
“I use some of grandpa’s wood and other wood from the out buildings that have been dilapidated on the property,” he said. “I try to reuse as much as I can. I have been doing woodwork for about three years now, and the first (German)Christmas Market was my maiden voyage.”
“I like to use as much as I can,” Clawson continued. “I like to give new life to old things. I have started doing frames since last Christmas. I made presents for the family, and my mom told me I should start selling the picture frames.”
Clawson said he loves branching out and trying new things.
“The glass used in the picture frames come from the old windows in my parents house,” he said. “They were all taken down and stacked in the shed. I had a local woman who does a lot of landscape photography commission me to make frames for her.”
Clawson said the local business owners all look out for one another, and he enjoys spending local.
Clawson also makes shadow boxes, bird houses, trunks, Norwegian Log Candles, Shelves, Wine Racks and other woodworks.
To get some one-of-a-kind woodwork from his family’s homestead contact Clawson at LemClawson@yahoo.com or call 585-469-8618.
Ed Joseph of Naples enjoys making stained glass art for charity. Right now all of his proceeds go to Hospeace House Inc. in Naples.
“I don’t make these to sell for profit. I donate all the money to a charity,” he said. “All of the money I make will be donated to Hospeace House.”
Joseph is one of the original founders of the comfort care home in 2000. He said the home will be reopened in mid-January.
“I have done stained glass for a dozen of years now,” he said. “I have always enjoyed making whimsical things. I started when I retired in 2005 as a hobby. I needed a hobby, so I took a few adult education classes, and I really love it. I teach two stained glass classes in the days and evenings for a couple of hours. The classes are only five dollars. I do eight week segments.”
Joseph said life is about caring and giving back to people.
“I am thankful I was led down this path,” he said. “I never expected this kind of support, but people have been wonderful.”
Hospeace House Inc. opened its doors in 2003, and in three years the original members raised several hundred thousand dollars.
“Naples is a beautiful and giving community,” he said. “We started Naples Angels about 15 years ago for families in need in the Naples School District. We raise money for that as well. The family gets $300 and a $75 voucher to use for groceries at the local grocery store. They also get help with car repair payments. It is a testimony to the community that we never run out of money for this charity.”
For more information on Hospeace House Inc. go to www.Hospeacehouse.org. It is located at 7824 County Road 33 in Naples. They can be reached at 585-374-2090.
Denise Wells, Jeff’s daughter, said an anonymous lady donated three five dollar bills to be used for children who want to buy candy for the German/American Christmas Market. Wells added that at least 10 children got the famous candy with that money.