Celebration Of It’s a Wonderful Life Festival

Thursday, Dec 9, 2021 at 9:00 a.m.

Various Venues in Seneca Falls, NY
Seneca Falls, NY 13148

Please call before attending any community events. It is likely that they will be postponed or canceled as a result of the coronavirus. You can find CDC coronavirus information at cdc.gov/coronavirus; AARP has additional resources at aarp.org/coronavirus.

Featured Guests - Cast Members, “It’s a Wonderful Life”

Karolyn Grimes (“Zuzu Bailey”)

Carol Coombs (“Janie Bailey”)

Jimmy Hawkins (“Tommy Bailey”)

Michael Chapin (“Young George’s Friend”)

Donald and Ronald Collins (“Little Pete Bailey”) And George Bailey’s Car

 Other Special Guests Associated with the Film:

Mary Owen (Donna Reed’s daughter; Board of Directors, The Donna Reed Foundation)

Monica Capra Hodges (Frank Capra’s granddaughter)

Carol Moss Loop (Virginia Patton’s daughter )

More Special Guests:

Brian Rohan (Actor, Jimmy Stewart/George Bailey)

Joseph Yakovetic (Artist)

Janie McKirgan (President/Executive Director, The Jimmy Stewart Museum)

Miles Ryan Fisher (Editor-in-Chief, Italian America Magazine)

Michael Willian (Author, The Essential It’s a Wonderful Life: A Scene-By-Scene Guide to the Classic Film)

Paul Abate (Artist)

Sal St. George And Darren St. George (St. George Living History Productions)

Harold Buchholz (Executive Producer and Writer, Mystery Science Theater 3000 - Netflix)

The Jason Middaugh Family (Creators - It’s a Wonderful LEGO Life)

Every Day Throughout the Festival:

Autograph Signing by Cast Members from It’s a Wonderful Life. (Autographs free with purchase, Fee for items you bring yourself.)  The Gould Hotel.  To ensure a safe environment for the actors, attendees must show proof of completed vaccination.

Paintings by Paul Abate: “I want to live again! Reflections and lessons from George Bailey.” The First Presbyterian Church of Seneca Falls, 23 Cayuga St.

New Exhibit on the career of Jeanine Roose (“Young Violet Bick”). It’s a Wonderful Life Museum.

New Exhibit on Virginia Patton (“Ruth Dakin Bailey”). It’s a Wonderful Life Museum.

Information on Suicide Prevention. The Seneca County Suicide Prevention Coalition.  The First Presbyterian Church of Seneca Falls and the It’s a Wonderful Life Museum. 

 “It’s a Wonderful Quilt” - Raffle for the 75th Anniversary Quilt. It’s a Wonderful Life Museum.

“Just Like in the Film” - Exhibit of items just like those used in It’s a Wonderful Life donated by fans and experts on the film. It’s a Wonderful Life Museum.

Michael Willian - Book Signing. (Hours to be announced.)

“It’s a Wonderful LEGO Life”: The Campaign to Request LEGO to create an It’s a Wonderful Life LEGO set in commemoration of the 75th anniversary. The Jason Middaugh Family. The Seneca Falls Visitor Center.

12th Annual Bedford Falls Gingerbread House Contest. Vote for your favorite. The Seneca Falls Visitor Center.

The Ultimate “It’s a Wonderful Life” Christmas Tree (from California). The Shop Around the Corner, 60 Fall Street.

Schedule:

Autograph Signing: 12:00 - 2:00 pm and 2:30 -4:30 pm.The Gould Hotel

(Autographs free with purchase; $30 fee per autograph for items you bring yourself). To ensure a safe environment for the actors, attendees must show proof of completed vaccination.

9:00 am: “Zuzu, My Little Gingersnap.” Presentation by Karolyn Grimes (“Zuzu Bailey”). Ma Bailey’s Kitchen at Trinity Church. Tickets $25 includes breakfast (Quiche, fruit, coffee or tea and a Ginger Snap). Call 315-568-5838 for tickets. To ensure a safe environment for the actors, attendees must show proof of completed vaccination.

9:00 am - 5:00 pm: The Seneca Falls It’s a Wonderful Life Museum: “The Timeless Message of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ - A Journey Through Seneca Falls.” 

9:00 am - 5:00 pm: The Ultimate “It’s a Wonderful Life” Christmas Tree (from California). The Shop Around the Corner, 60 Fall Street.

9:00 am - 8:00 pm: Visit George Bailey’s Car at James Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram.

10:00 am - 2:00 pm: First Presbyterian Church: “The Timeless Message of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ - A Journey Through Seneca Falls.”  Visit the Church where Alice Paul first introduced the Equal Rights Amendment in 1923 and ring the church bell. The Church has a long-standing history of signing the bell wall after you have rung the bell - add your name to the giant guest book. 23 Cayuga Street.

10:00 am - 4:00 pm: Women’s Rights National Historical Park: “The Timeless Message of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ - A Journey Through Seneca Falls.” Visit the site where the first Women’s Rights Convention was held in 1848.

10:30 am: Videotaped interview with Carol Coombs (“Janie Bailey”) from the 65th Anniversary Celebration in 2011. Trinity Church.

11:00 am - 4:00 pm: National Women’s Hall of Fame: “The Timeless Message of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ - A Journey Through Seneca Falls.” Come stand among great women and learn about the Donna Reed Center and Heritage Museum. Discounted admission - $6. Free admission if you come in costume.

11:15 am: “Bread, Salt and Wine” Housewarming in association with Habitat for Humanity featuring actors from It’s a Wonderful Life, 27 Tyler Avenue, Seneca Falls.

Noon: Videotaped tour by Brian Rohan of locations in Los Angeles County where It’s a Wonderful Life was filmed including: The Martini House; Stage 14/Culver City Studios; Site of the RKO Ranch; and Beverly Hills High School. Trinity Church.

12:15 pm: The Shop Around the Corner, Radio Play featuring Brian Rohan. Trinity Church.

1:00 pm: “My Dad, His Remarkable Life.” Videotaped presentation by John Kuri, producer, director, author and son of Emile Kuri (Set Decorator for It’s a Wonderful Life, who was instrumental in creating Bedford Falls and was the first person born in Mexico to receive an Academy Award). Trinity Church.

2:00 pm: Video about the making of the snow for It’s a Wonderful Life by Bob Lawless, Special Effects Team, It’s a Wonderful Life. Trinity Church.

2:05 pm: “It was a Wonderful Decade.” Presentation by Michael Chapin (“Young George’s Friend”) on his career as a young actor. Trinity Church.

3:00 pm: “Jimmy Stewart’s Wonderful Life.” Presentation by Janie McKirgan, Executive Director, The Jimmy Stewart Museum. Includes a short biography on Jimmy Stewart narrated by his daughter Kelly. Trinity Church.

4:00 pm: Special Announcement: It’s a Wonderful Life Museum, Donna Reed Center and Heritage Museum and The Jimmy Stewart Museum. Featuring Mary Owen (Donna Reed’s daughter), Janie McKirgan (The Jimmy Stewart Museum) and the Advisors and Board of Trustees of the It’s a Wonderful Life Museum. Trinity Church.

4:00 - 5:30 pm: “I want to live again! Reflections and lessons from George Bailey.” Paintings by Paul Abate. First Presbyterian Church.

4:00 - 5:30 pm: “The Timeless Message of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life'” - Activities sponsored by the Seneca County Suicide Prevention Coalition and the RiSE (Resilience and Inclusion for Students Everywhere” youth group. First Presbyterian Church.

4:15 pm: “Tommy Bailey and More: It Wasn’t Just ‘It’s a Wonderful Life.'” Presentation by Jimmy Hawkins (“Tommy Bailey”): Trinity Church.

5:00 pm: Classic episode of The Donna Reed Show featuring Jimmy Hawkins and Shelley Fabares: “Mary’s Driving Lesson.” Trinity Church.

7:00 - 9:30 pm: Special Screening of Frank Capra’s American Dream. Introduction by Monica Capra Hodges (Frank Capra’s granddaughter). Ron Howard hosts this biography of the life and career of Frank Capra. Includes archival footage and interviews with family members, directors, actors and friends, including: Tom Capra, Frank Capra II, Film Historian Jeanine Basinger, Martin Scorsese, Oliver Stone, Richard Dreyfuss, Angela Lansbury, Peter Falk, Michael Keaton and “Bedford Falls Productions” Directors Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovicz. Trinity Church.

This event listing provided for the Seneca Falls community events calendar. Community events are not associated with or sponsored by AARP, but may be of interest to you. We want to hear from you if you have an event to share or updates to this event.

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