CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — The Ebensburg Dickens of a Christmas festival, which takes place every first week of December, is filled with things to do, see, eat and hear across town all weekend.
Ice skating, hot chocolate, craft shows, music performances — and, of course, the parade on Saturday.
But no matter what you’re doing while roaming the town this weekend, it’s hard to pass one woman without noticing her costume matches the Dickens theme quite literally.
Leah Brooks is rocking her Victorian-style outfit all weekend to match the traditional women’s attire from the days of the famous author back in the 1800s.
“So I started dressing up last year,” Brooks said. “My friend moved from California, and she has a bunch of dresses because they have Dickens fairs in California a lot. So she’s like, ‘Hey, do you want to dress up?’ And it’s been my favorite weekend ever since. So we do the parade, I do all the festivals, I do the crafts. Lots of fun.”
The outfit may be new, but the Ebensburg tradition is not for Brooks, who’s lived there since she was a child.
And now, beginning this year, the festival is really coming full circle for her.
“I remember being in the parade as a girl scout,” she said. “And now I have my daycare. I opened up a daycare, and this is the first year for them to be in the parade.”
She just opened her Barrels of Fun center in Ebensburg in September, and now that it’s already a part of the parade, Dickens of a Christmas means even more to her than ever before.
“My kids are here, and then my kids from my daycare, who I still call my kids, are here,” Brooks said. “So now everyone is in the parade, and it is so much fun.”
She said every new year of the yearly celebration reminds her more and more of the times when she went as a child.
“I love seeing all the kids,” she said. “When I was little, it was full of little kids. And then I feel like we kind of had a moment where it wasn’t as young. Now Ebensburg is getting young again, and I love seeing all the excitement, all the people out and all the merriment.”