Salem Trolley & Griffen Theater Presents ... "A Christmas Carol"

After our tour of the Salem Marine Society cabin on the roof of the Hawthorne Hotel, the girls and I had one more thing planned for the night - a presentation of Dickens' famous classic "A Christmas Carol".  But this wasn't going to be just any presentation of the venerable holiday favorite - this presentation was going to take place on one of Salem's famous red trolleys as well as other locations around town.

I had read about the Salem Trolley & Griffen Theater Presents ... "A Christmas Carol" back in November on the blog Discover the Magic of Salem, Massachusetts written by Kate Fox of Destination Salem - the official guide to Salem.  It sounded like it might be great fun so even though tickets were apparently selling like hotcakes, I managed to snag three for the 8:00 showing on Thursday, December 16th.

What really appealed to me was the fact that the story took place on board a trolley as it made its way down the streets of a very dark Salem in addition to stops along the way to meet up with the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, & Future.  I'd read that there was a lot of interaction with the audience involving improvisation, comedy, and of course drama so thought it might be something that would appeal more to the girls than your standard production of "A Christmas Carol".   The Salem version is the brainchild of Erik Rodenheiser who owns Salem's Griffen Theater and who also plays the role of Ebenezer Scrooge in most showings - and might I add he does a very good job of playing Ebenezer Scrooge!  You can read more about how the show came into being at this article on Salem Patch if you'd like.

As it wasn't far from the hotel to where the show started, the girls and I bundled up for the walk and left our room to take the elevator down to the lobby.  Or at least we tried to take the elevator down to the lobby!  The Hawthorne has two elevators that run side by side with a panel that tells you what floor each car is on and when we got to the elevators, the lights indicated that there was a car on the first floor and another already on the sixth floor where we were. Jamie pushed the button and nothing ... the door to the elevator that was on our floor didn't open.  She pushed the button again and still nothing.  Odd.  With one car already being on the sixth floor, I knew that another car wasn't going to come up so we opted to take the stairs down to the lobby instead.  At that time I didn't think much about it as I thought perhaps there was just some sort of glitch with the elevators but I ended up giving it a lot more thought later on.

Really Bad Picture of Our Trolley!After reaching the lobby, a short walk from the Hawthorne brought us to Pickering Wharf and the beginning of the production inside Salemdipity, one of the many shops located along the waterfront.  After Scrooge instructed Bob Cratchit to be back all the earlier the day after Christmas, he ordered those of us in the audience to go climb on board the red trolley that was waiting for us outside with the warning that there were to be no cell phones or texting - particularly texting as he found that to be quite deplorable!  Needless to say, he had the girls laughing right from the get-go and we all loved the production from beginning to end.

In addition to the really bad picture that I took of our trolley, I only took a few pictures as I was enjoying the show way too much to worry about pictures but I do have a few to share with you.  Thankfully neither of the girls grabbed the camera and snapped pictures when I was pulled out of the audience to dance at the Fezziwig Christmas Ball but I do have a picture of Jamie standing next to the Ghost of Christmas Present in her role as "Want".
Salem Trolley's "A Christmas Carol"
A young Scrooge along with the woman he loved, Belle, as well as Mr. & Mrs. Fezziwig
Old Scrooge, Young Scrooge, and Belle
Old Scrooge looks on while Young Scrooge declares his love to Belle 
The Ghost of Christmas Present
The Ghost of Christmas Present who wouldn't stop moving his head long enough for a good shot! 
Bob Cratchit
The audience looks on while Bob Cratchit speaks to his family
"Tiny Tim"
Not your typical Tiny Tim! 
A Toast to Mr. Scrooge
A toast to Mr. Scrooge by the Cratchit family
Jamie as "Want"
Jamie as "Want" and another audience member as "Ignorance" 
In spite of the look on her face in the above picture, Jamie absolutely loved the show and suggested that we make it an annual tradition - a suggestion that Amanda readily agreed to even though it was her sister who suggested it!  After Scrooge realized the error of his ways and became a new man, we were dropped back off at Pickering Wharf and sent on our way with many wishes for a Merry Christmas and a gold-wrapped chocolate coin to boot.  All in all it was a very fine time indeed in spite of the fact that it was, as Scrooge put it, "freaking cold!"

We made the short walk back up to the Hawthorne but before heading inside to the Tavern for dessert prior to heading up to our room, I attempted some night shots as it was just too pretty not to at least try! If you look closely in the first picture, you can see Amanda and Jamie waiting "patiently" for me by the main entrance to the Hawthorne.

The Hawthorne Hotel at Night
The Hawthorne Hotel - of course! 
Night Flags at the Hawthorne Hotel
"My" flags were still flying! 
Wreathed Art
A view to one of the art galleries located on the lower floor of the Hawthorne
The Gazebo on the Salem Common
The gazebo on Salem Common
The Hawthorne Hotel from Salem Common at Night
The side of the Hawthorne as seen from Salem Common
In the picture above, if you click on it and go to my Flickr page for the bigger version and then look towards the middle of the 6th floor, you can see what looks like a small glowing green spot.  It's very similar to the glowing green spot that showed up in some of my other pictures that I can't explain.  I especially cannot explain this one as I wasn't using a flash when I took the picture and there's nothing on that side of the hotel that should have been reflecting at that height - or in that color.  Considering all of the stories I've heard about the 6th floor of the Hawthorne being the "most haunted" then I guess it makes sense that the green glow appears where it does.

Once I finished taking pictures, we went into the Tavern where we were greeted warmly by the staff before we sat down at the table in front of the fire and ordered hot beverages and dessert. Believe it or not, I didn't take any pictures so you're just going to have to take my word for it that everything was quite delicious!  When the girls were done they went up to our room while I went up to the Second Floor to take some pictures of the lovely little lobby area that overlooks the Grand Ballroom - an area that I wouldn't have even known existed if we hadn't had to take the stairs down from the sixth floor prior to heading to Pickering Wharf.

Chadliers Over the Grand Ballroom
Chandeliers over the Grand Ballroom
Staircase to 2nd Floor
The staircase that leads up from the first floor to the second 
Small Chandlier in Stairway
The very pretty light over the staircase 
2nd floor Christmas tree
The second floor lobby beautifully decorated for Christmas
Most of you will probably remember a similar version of the picture above that I used as the picture for my blog header before Christmas.  Truth be told, I'm seriously thinking it may just be the perfect picture to use for next year's Christmas card so don't be surprised if you see it again!   If everything looks a bit dark I should explain that I wasn't using the flash on my camera at all as Amanda says that none of the photography students at Montserrat use flash because it makes the lighting unnatural.  Who am I to argue with an art college student?

Anyhow, once I had taken more pictures than I'm sure I needed to I decided it was time to head back upstairs so I went over to the elevators, pushed the button, and had no problems with a car arriving on my floor promptly.  Whatever the glitch was, it appeared to have been fixed and everything was back in proper working order.  Knowing that there is much talk about the 6th floor hallways being haunted and in particular around the door to Room #612, I decided to take a few shots of the area - again using no flash.   The shot below was taken from the area of the elevators towards our room which is the last door on the right.

Sixth Floor Hallway Outside of Room #612

Now ... call me crazy but I don't think that line of light in front of the door is a reflection - nor do I think the wisps of light closer to the floor are either.  Initially when I looked at the picture on the computer after we got home I thought that it was a reflection from the glass on the fire extinguisher door just before our room door but further review made me think that didn't make much sense.  If the light was reflecting from the chandelier above, then the reflection should have been higher up on the wall - plus those lights really aren't all that bright nor is the door to the fire extinguisher all that close to the room door.

Door to Room #612

This picture above was taken from the hallway in front of the door and in this shot you can't see any sort of a reflection on the wall which you would be able to see if the chandelier was reflecting off of the fire extinguisher door.  I had Amanda take a look at the pictures, too, and she's with me in thinking that those lighter areas in the first picture are not reflections from anything.  What they are - we don't know but we just don't think they're reflections.

Anyhow, while you mull that over, I'm going to work on the last installment of our trip to Salem - an installment that includes more trouble from those pesky elevators!


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