York at Christmas: Locals share memories of shopping, decorations downtown

Pat Elicker’s halls are decked. A Santa figurine examines diamonds in her York Township store — Leon Ness Jewelry Barn. Poinsettias greet customers in a hot-pink, flamingo-shaped flower holder.

Elicker usually is decked out, too, especially during the holidays. On a recent Wednesday, gold-backed Santa-and-reindeer earrings danced on her shoulders. A sleigh flew through glittering stars on her black sweater. A pin stuck to it ensured “I’ll get elves right on that.” Red cowboy boots peaked out from beneath her pants.

Even the silver eye loop she wears around her neck each day — and uses to inspect customers’ jewels — is encrusted with gems. But her favorite decoration by far has hung outside her rust-colored barn for about 20 Decembers.

The inner tube-sized plastic medallion, which shows Santa’s face wreathed in holly, evokes vivid memories for Elicker. It takes her back to the winter streets of downtown York from her childhood. Read more memories, see photos and share your own experiences in a comment.

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