MICHAEL A. HEERY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Portraying the mayor of Mauch Chunk, Bob Stevenson, front, welcomes famous author Charles Dickens played by Jack Gunser, rear, to town in November of 1867. The reenactment was part of Jim Thorpe's recent Christmas in July Celebration.
On a hot and humid summer day, Christmas in July was recently celebrated in the town of Jim Thorpe topped off with the 200th birthday celebration of Charles Dickens.
Historian Jack Gunser entertained the crowd as Dickens, reenacting the famous author's visit to the town of Mauch Chunk in November of 1867.
Concluding his informative presentation at Dimmick Memorial Library, Gunser quoted Dickens' "Nicholas Nickleby."
"The pain of parting is nothing to the joy of meeting again."
Gunser was then presented with an elaborate birthday cake designed by Erica Heery of La Mia Torta Custom Cake Studio. Depicting Dickens' book "A Christmas Carol," the fondant-covered cake sat on a desk next to an ink quill, a half-burned candle, and some of Ebenezer Scrooge's gold coins in front of a snow-kissed window all edible.
"Even the window is edible," points out Heery. "It's made of sugar."
The cake was cut and shared with everyone in attendance. All donations benefitted the library.
In addition to celebrating the 200th birthday of Charles Dickens, Christmas in July included a Victorian costume contest.
As winner of the competition, Barbara Swartz won $200 in gift certificates from various businesses in Jim Thorpe. Swartz's dress was designed by local artist Sandi Crumm.
Gunser will return to Jim Thorpe as Charles Dickens during the 2012 Olde Time Christmas Celebration.
This three-weekend event will kick off Friday, Nov. 30 with the annual tree lighting ceremony and run through Sunday, Dec. 16.
For more information about the 2012 Jim Thorpe Olde Time Christmas Celebration, visit www.JimThorpeOldeTimeChristmas.com or call 888-JIM-THORPE.