In the 10 months I've been co-hosting the #builtheritage chat on Twitter, I can't remember a one that has taken off as quickly as this month's about preservation and the holidays. Sometimes during our Twitter chats it takes a few minutes for the conversation to really get off the ground. Not so this time around - everyone came armed with ideas and examples about celebrating the holidays at historic sites and on Main Streets.
I gathered some of the tweets into Storify to capture links to a handful of the great programs mentioned (there's still a full transcript available), but I think one of the overriding themes is worth mentioning here, too: nostalgia. It was clear from everyone's comments remembering successful events they'd hosted or attended was that the holiday season relies more heavily on personal nostalgia than other times of the year. So, when making plans to celebrate on your Main Street, or at your historic site, think about connecting people to their past in a local and personal way - and about building new memories they can carry into the future.
Sarah Heffern is a member of the Digital and New Media team at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. She's hopelessly nostalgic about Christmas and was glad to find she's not alone in this.
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