The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

December 2, 2013

Sawmill Museum decks the halls

By Amy Kent
Herald Staff Writer

CLINTON — The season of holiday cheer and goodwill among all has arrived, and to give families an opportunity to experience the joys of Christmas, the Sawmill Museum in Clinton has a series of family friendly programs planned for December.

Every Saturday in the month of December, visitors can experience a variety of holiday fun, including making homemade Christmas ornaments, cookie decorating and singing Christmas carols.

Sawmill Museum director Matt Parbs said they typically try to create specific programs for all the season’s holidays, but Christmas plays the biggest role in the museum’s holiday activity.

“The big thing is that it’s Christmas,” Parbs said. “And I always feel that’s what were here for: to be a community place to spread holiday cheer.”

To do so, Parbs and his partner Brenda Linville have organized four specific holiday programs in December with a few surprises along the way.

In addition to the programs, the Sawmill will be doing something a little different this year. In conjunction with Timber Lane Tree Farms in Fulton, Ill., the Sawmill will begin selling evergreen trees just in time for Christmas.

“Some proceeds will come to us, some will go to Timber Lane and a portion will be donated to Unity Christian schools,” Parbs said. “So really, buying a tree here is benefiting three different organizations.”

Two types of trees will be available at the Sawmill throughout the month: short- needle and long-needle evergreens. The trees will run purchasers $5 per foot for the short-needle trees and $6 per foot for the long-needle trees.

The Sawmill will also feature its own trees during the Christmas season, decorated by museum volunteers and kids who visit the museum.

“We have five Christmas trees that will be decorated for the season and one of those will be decorated with the ornaments that the kids get to make here,” Parbs said. “It allows them to be part of the museum in a different way.”

Whether it’s decorating the museum’s trees or Lumberjack Camp, making homemade Christmas ornaments or joining in on holiday Christmas carols, the Sawmill Museum has big plans for this holiday season and is hoping the community comes out in full support of those plans.

“I always have really good memories of going to museums over the Christmas holiday and that’s what this is really about,” Parbs said. “Letting kids come and really get into the holiday spirit.”