The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Going Dutch

May 15, 2014

It wonders me if der Belsnickel will come - Part 2

If you’ve been a very goot little boy or girl, you might get a fresh, tasty orange, nuts and maybe even some lollipop-sweet clear toy candy. That makes for some good fressing!

But if you’ve been nixie … watchit! You might get a stern look and a lump of coal or, worse, one of der Belsnickel’s switches — a form of discipline so cuttingly painful, I’m sure just the possibility of it caused more than one little nix-nutz to straighten up and do as he was told.

As Greish Dawk, or Christmas Day, drew near, the youngsters would surely hope for a snow squall. “It wonders me if we’ll have a stiver,” they might have said, gazing wistfully out at the sky. More often than not in a Pennsylvania winter, a stiver would blow in, der Belsnickel would deliver more treats than switches, and family members set aside all but the most necessary chores of the day to

gather in the warmth of home to fress and celebrate a happy Christmas Day.

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