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Nostalgia: A look back at traditions

MARTINS FERRY — On this Thanksgiving Day, many of us will gather — be it with our immediate family or our extended family and friends — to celebrate and relax. For some, it may be the first opportunity to do so in a long time.

As we join together, we may observe traditions that have been important to our families for generations — time-honored customs that give us comfort and help us remember the joys of holidays past.

It could be that Christmas party that brings scores of family and friends under one roof. Maybe it’s that certain recipe, handed down through generations that, when the aroma glides through the kitchen, it just feels like home. Is there a television special that your family refuses to miss during the holidays, one that is appointment viewing each year?

Look back at those traditions with us today in our latest edition of Nostalgia magazine, which focuses on the tried and true customs that we cherish. This special section is included in today’s newspaper.

In this section, we write about the traditions that Ohio Valley residents enjoy and our own traditions that still warm our hearts.

For Managing Editor Jennifer Compston-Strough, the holidays aren’t complete without a visit from Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang. Staff Writer Carri Graham shares her fond memories — and those of her grandmother — of the first snows of the season.

For Eric Ayres, the holidays don’t really begin until the Christmas tree goes up in the house. It’s a highly anticipated event each year for Eric and his family, including his precocious cat Buddy.

Also inside the section, Derek Redd thinks back to the nights he spent shivering along the streets of Wheeling watching floats glide along the annual Christmas parade route and waiting for that glimpse of, and a wave from, Santa Claus.

John McCabe tells the tale of celebrating the holidays with a large family teeming with aunts, uncles and cousins. Whether it was Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve or Christmas day, the houses were full of family, fun and intriguing conversations.

Heather Ziegler remembers the days when department stores lined downtown Wheeling and welcomed shoppers who packed the city streets and stores looking for that perfect gift for someone special. She also recalls her cherished memories of walking through those stores with her father and sisters, searching for a gift for her mother and capping the excursion with a special dinner.

So as you gather around the dinner table or while you’re relaxing in the living room with a full stomach today, go ahead and browse this special section. Then maybe strike up a conversation with your loved ones about the family traditions you’ve loved and the ones that still warm your hearts today.

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