From a life-size marketplace with a basket shop and bakery to Roman guards demanding paperwork, travelers were transported back in time to when and where Jesus was born.
Volunteers from more than 20 area churches collaborated for the “Journey to Bethlehem" event. They built the town and created costumes for nearly 200 volunteers.
Although the first-time event continues tonight and Saturday, tickets for the event sold out in November, project leader Terri Metzger said.
The Tri-Cities Area Habitat for Humanity helped sponsor the event.
While visitors took their places waiting for the travel to begin, event volunteer Mary Beth Witte of Spring Lake said it was nice to see the community’s enthusiasm for the project.
“I love that there’s such an interest,” she said.
After arriving at the United Methodist Church of the Dunes, visitors were given new identities before beginning their journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem.
Grand Haven resident Craig Fuller traveled with his wife, Hannah, and their three children — ages 5, 3 and 10 months.
“We wanted to show our kids and visually see the story,” Craig Fuller said.
Hannah Fuller said she liked the idea that the event brought churches together for the same cause.
“I think it’s really cool to show people the true meaning of Christmas,” she said.
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