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WILMORE, Ky. — Asbury University invites the community to experience the Christmas story — complete with the scent of hay and a frosty nip in the air — at the third annual “Christmas in the Country” performance at 6 p.m. on Nov. 29 and 30.

“Christmas in the Country” is held at the Equine Center, with shuttle service from the Providence School parking lot on Lexington Avenue in Wilmore, Ky., beginning at 5:30 p.m. The performance, pony rides and additional children’s activities are free and open to the public.

Asbury students, alumni, staff and community children are involved in the production.A project of Asbury’s Horsemanship Ministry class, the presentation puts the stories of Jesus’ birth, ministry and resurrection into a new light through incorporating horses and the surrounding stable into the narrative. Dozens of current students, alumni, community children and University staff work together each year to tell a familiar story in fresh, creative ways.

“I think it makes the Christmas story come alive,” said Heather Teshera ’13, a member of the class. “Often times, the story seems so perfect and quaint. By putting our nativity with horses in a barn, I think it shows how real, and perhaps even dirty, the situation was.

“I am really looking forward to seeing the kids’ faces as they watch the story unfold! Last year it was so much fun to see them getting as close as they could to the arena and watching with rapt attention.”

“Christmas in the Country” is the first of several opportunities to celebrate the season at Asbury; the following weeks will feature concerts, multimedia performances and movies. But at the beginning of a season famous for its busy-ness, the opportunity to begin with quiet reflection can have a lasting impact.

“Since this program will be at the beginning of the Christmas season, I hope it starts people thinking about the promises of Christmas,” said Teshera. “A big part of this year’s message is that Christmas reminds us that God is working on his plan to make things right. Through Jesus, God promises that we can have peace now, and because of Christmas the future holds a promise of complete peace for the whole world. I hope that our guests take that with them through rest of the holiday.”

At a Glance…


    • Bring a blanket! The barn is quite chilly after dark.


    • Children’s activities (pony rides, coloring) begin at 5:30 p.m., and the performance starts at 6 p.m.


    • Parking at the Equine Center is limited. Visitors are encouraged to take advantage of the shuttle departing from the Providence School parking lot beginning at 5:30 p.m.


    • Complimentary coffee and hot chocolate will be available, as well as bake sale items that raise funds for equine clubs.