Here's the real story behind Christmas in July

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Here's the real story behind Christmas in July

This delightful midsummer celebration has roots in a girl's camp.

There are fewer things more opposed as the chilly winters and scorching summers, but some people celebrate a special midsummer celebration called Christmas in July. Tourists flock to resorts to join the festivities, the Hallmark Channel show Christmas movies, Santa Claus gives out ice cream, and families decorate their home in colored lights.

Country Living Magazine has traced the roots of the American version of this celebration to a girl's camp called Keystone Camp. "I never thought it was unique to us," Page Ives Lemel, the current director of Keystone Camp, said in an interview. "It seems like something other camps would do."

The event was the brain child of camp co-founder Fannie Holt. "Miss Fannie was such a character: a whimsical, dreaming, creative type who added all of this uniqueness to the program," says Lemel. "Most camps number the cabins to identify them. Here, we have Crabapple, Skylark, and Crow's Nest, for example. Instead of junior and senior campers we have Elves, Pixies, and Dryads."

From the article :

The first Christmas in July included carolers, a Christmas Tree, Santa Claus, presents, and fake snow made of cotton. As the tradition evolved, campers would use laundry bags as makeshift stockings, which they placed outside their cabins to be filled with candy overnight. Eventually elves, reindeer, and Mrs. Claus joined the act, along with a camp-wide gift exchange, counselors included. Lemel, who is the fourth generation in her family to hold the title of director, said the gifts were crafty and creative. "One time my dad got a bejeweled toilet plunger decorated with feathers and glitter," she said in the interview.

So it's time to make the celebration your own! Maybe exchange gifts and then take a cool swim or enjoy a caroling barbecue!

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