Up Christmas 2001 Christmas 2002 Christmas 2003
Christmas 2001


On this page you will find memories from the 2001 Montgomery Christmas Party!


Old-Fashioned Sleigh Ride

Join us for a rustic horse-drawn sleigh ride through the snow-covered hills of Ellison Park.  The ride will begin around 2:00pm and last about 45 minutes.  The cost is $20 per person and the authentic antique-style sleigh holds up to 8 adults.  If you are interested, you must reserve your spot as soon as possible!  We'll have peaceful holiday music as a backdrop to accompany our journey "over the river and through the woods" to enjoy the beauty of Winter's wildlife and the quietness of the sleeping countryside.  Bring along a sled and enjoy the best sledding hills in the area!  If you don't want to take the sleigh ride, you can get a head start for the sledding hill, build a snow castle, or just enjoy the peaceful beauty of the snowscape.  After some fun in the snow, we can look forward to warming up by a fire with some hot cocoa and cookies!

Welcome To Ellison Park
INFORMATION: (716)256-4950


At Ellison Park, you'll experience the beauty of natural woodlands combined with steep slopes and the level flood plain of the Irondequoit Creek. Officially the first Monroe County Park, Ellison Park came into being in December of 1926. The county accepted approximately 200 acres of land from Mr. and Mrs. Frank T. Ellison in memory of Mr. Ellison's father, Nathaniel.

During the next 20 years, Ellison Park grew as rapidly as the entire parks system--and today's Ellison Park, which is adjacent to the Irondequoit Bay Wetlands, includes 447 acres.

How To Get Here

Ellison Park is located in the eastern portion of Monroe County, one mile east of Rochester, in the towns of Brighton and Penfield. Enter the park from Blossom and Landing Roads.


Family Gathering

The 2001 Montgomery Christmas gathering took place at the lodge on the pond in Brighton Town Park on Westfall Rd.









Decorating the Christmas tree











Christmas Dinner


Dinner was catered by:
Northside Inn
The Northside Inn is located in East Rochester and is a family owned and operated restaurant specializing in fine Italian cuisine.

Our dinner menu consisted of a home-made lasagna casserole (penne loaded with meat sauce and Italian cheeses), fresh Italian bread and butter, tossed green salad, and beverages.  A special Christmas cake was ordered for dessert!















  Gift Exchange

This year, we did something completely different!  Instead of buying a gift for a man or woman, or picking a name from a hat to play secret Santa, We did NOT buy gifts for anyone!  Our gift to each other was our warm family gathering in a cozy cabin with good food and festive celebration.  No, no - that didn't mean that we didn't have gifts to open.  We started a new tradition called "Misfit Gifts".  The idea is that the gift is something STRANGE or FUNNY that you no longer have a use for.  Each person attending the party brought a wrapped misfit gift to place under the Christmas tree.  However, there were certain rules.  In order to qualify as a "misfit", the item:

  1. must NOT have been purchased within the last 5 years.

  2. must be something USED and no longer of any value.

  3. must be something FOUND in your house (basement, garage, attic, refrigerator, bathroom, etc.)

  4. must be FUNNY for anyone to receive

  5. should have NO IDENTIFYING GIFT TAG on the outside of the package


Each participant who brought a gift to exchange drew a number.  All of the gifts were placed on the floor in front of the fireplace and chairs were arranged in a circle surrounding the gifts.  The person who drew the number "1" was first to select a gift.  The person holding the next number could either select a gift from those remaining or "steal" the gift from someone who already selected one, sending that person back to the remaining gifts to select another.  The process continued until everyone had a gift.  The The gifts were opened one at a time starting with whoever drew the number "1".  There was a vote at the end to determine which gift was the funniest. There was a very NICE prize for the funniest gift!

What surprises are inside each of the pretty Christmas packages?

Let's find out!






























Our Greatest Gifts

In lieu of spending money on "real" gifts for each other, we had a "Charity Tree".  Anyone who donated money, time, or gifts to a local charity honoring the spirit of Christmas briefly describe their act of kindness on a piece of paper and placed it inside of a plain white envelope.  The notes were ANONYMOUS.  People brought as many envelopes as they wanted but were limited to only one act of kindness per envelope.  The envelopes were placed on the Christmas tree as guests arrived.  We opened the envelopes near the end of the evening and lowered the lights to sing "Silent Night". Afterwards, the lights came back up and more Christmas carols were sung around the fire as we all began to feel the true spirit of Christmas!

Here is a list of this year's very generous Charity Tree gifts:



"Volunteered at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Donated money to EHOEA (Let's Bring 'Em Home) Fund"
The money was used to fly military men and women home for Christmas!

"Gave donations to Open Door Mission"

"Gave donations to missionary oblates of Mary Immaculate"

"Gave donation to American Bible Society"

"Gave new toys to 'Toys for Tots' campaign"

"Donated money to the Boy Scouts of America"

"Gave McDonalds gift certificates to a boy at St. Joseph's Villa"

"Gave socks to a girl at St Joseph's Villa"

"Bought 29 Christmas dinners for the homeless at Open Door Mission"

"Gave some children a very nice Christmas at Girls and Boys Town, the original Father Flanigan's Boy's home."

"Donated money to the Salvation Army"

"Gave donation to St. Jude Research Hospital"

"Filled many kettles for the Salvation Army - each one got their share - ten to fifteen times!"

"Gave Record Archive gift certificate to a child at St. Joseph's Villa"

"Gave money to help Afghanistan refugees"



"Brought in tree and decorations to where I volunteer at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Gave Christmas gifts to Doctor and staff"

"Gave Christmas gifts to co-workers and staff and Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Gave Christmas gifts to psychologist and staff"

"Gave a nice gift to the mailman, deliveryman, paperboy, and our neighbors around us"

"Made audio tapes for co-worker at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Let co-worker at Strong Memorial Hospital borrow pre-recorded video tapes"

"Brought gifts to co-workers and staff at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Donated to different organizations for Christmas and visited a sick and elderly neighbor"

"Brought in toys and games several times for pediatric unit at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Made video tapes for co-workers at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Brought snacks in for co-workers at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Prayers and kindness for a family member"

"Helped my neighbor"

"Gave poinsettia plants to two shut-ins"



"Fed Christmas dinner to a lot of people at Open Door Mission"

"Prayers and kindness for a family member"

"Lovingly remembered family members no longer with us"

"Prayers and act of kindness for an ill neighbor"



"Prayed for all those who lost their lives on 9-11, all those left behind without them, our president, our country, and for hurting and needy people throughout the world!  For His peace and blessings in their need!"



"Thanked God for His love, mercy, and faithfulness to me - most of all for His son and forgiveness of my sins!"



"Prayed for all my family, friends, and neighbors - that God will bless each of them, keep them well and safe, and meet their needs!"

"Prayed for the lost, the homeless, the hungry, the lonely - remembering that 'Whatever you do for least of these you have done unto me' (Mathew 25:40)"

"Offered money to a homeless man on the street"



"Lead choir in caroling for patients at Strong Memorial Hospital"

"Sent e-mail holiday greetings to servicemen overseas"



"Supported Amnesty International's campaign to write letters to prisoners of conscience who have been wrongfully incarcerated in foreign countries"

"Charitable prayers and offerings known only to God"




Would you like to be notified by e-mail whenever this site gets updated?
click here!