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WildeWood Farm celebrates Christmas with interactive live nativity production
wildewood farm
Hannah and Petr Zapletal, owners of WildeWood Farm, Inc., along with their fantastic group of volunteers, pose with Santa Claus after their show on Friday, Dec. 18.

The stars were bright Friday night, light shining down on a scene of an inn too full for guests and an empty stable. Travelers and families rested weary and warmed by small fires, faces lit as they drank hot cocoa and waited with anticipation for the well-known couple to arrive to Bethlehem -- Mary and Joseph. 

A hush fell over the crowd as a voice filtered through the people of Bethlehem. Participants joined in one after the other, singing traditional Christmas carols that furthered the viewing experience and warmed hearts on the chilly evening.

wildewood farm
Volunteers Dedria Sparks and Misty Tucker man the snack station in Bethlehem, offering families cups of hot cocoa and carrots to feed to the animals after the show.

WildeWood Farm Inc., located at 5150 Oak Grove Circle in Cumming, put on its very first Christmas production, comprised of an interactive live nativity scene. The farm had three shows during the weekend of Dec. 18 through Dec. 20. 

Each show began with participants finding seats around socially distanced fires, both for proper lighting and warmth. Volunteers dressed as people of Bethlehem, Roman soldiers and shepherds filtered in and requested room at the inn, which was full, of course. 

Mary (played by Kendra Sanderson) and Joseph arrived on a donkey and were promptly turned away from the inn. They moved to the stable, surrounded by animals owned by WildeWood Farm and soon, baby Jesus was born. 

wildewood farm
Mary (Kendra Sanderson) and Joseph sit with swaddled baby Jesus in the stable. Farm animals from WildeWood Farm, Inc. surrounded them to create a realistic scene for the audience.

The crowd sang Christmas carols that followed the plot of the nativity story. A goat named Audi also joined in on the fun, belting along with families as they rang in the Christmas spirit. 

Hannah Zapletal, owner of WildeWood Farm, said she was inspired to put on the interactive live nativity by memories from her childhood. Growing up in Haiti without a television, Hannah and her mother Gloria wrote many plays that were performed in local churches. 

“This is the first time we have written [a play] for our American audience,” Hannah said. 

wildewood farm
The three Wise Men, or Magi, stand together in their full costumes. Left to right: Bob Forbes, Greg Goldman, Petr Zapletal.

While a main attraction was the interactive component of the nativity story, the production featured many of the farm’s animals as well. Hannah said her favorite part of the play was watching the Arabian horses prancing in with the Magi. Hannah’s husband and co-owner of Wildewood Farm, Petr Zapletal, expressed his amazement and gratitude for the crowd turn-out and involvement on Friday, Dec. 18, the first night of the show.

For more information about WildeWood Farm Inc., and questions about horseback riding lessons and day camps, visit www.wildewoodfarminc.com.