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Nov. 18-Jan. 13: Holiday crèche exhibit

FREDERICK, Md.—Approximately 160 crèches from around the world are now on display in the Beneficial-Hodson Library at Hood College.

The annual exhibit has become a tradition at Hood, and the number of displays has grown over the years. The exhibit began with Beulah Munshower Sommer, a 1944 alumna of Hood, who was a world traveler and collected some 700 crèches. She donated a portion of her collection to the College, and starting around 1999, the library began displaying them as a regular holiday event. Sommer continued to add to the library’s collection until her death in 2015.

Her friend, the Rev. Richard Kukowski, was inspired by her and had a crèche collection of his own. He gave a portion of his collection to the College around 2006, and the library has shared those in the exhibit with Sommer’s collection.

Jan Samet O’Leary, retired library director, and Phyllis Townsend, also retired from her library position as collection development services manager, have made several additions to the collection as well.

One of the attractions of the crèche display has been the diversity of styles, cultures and artistry that are represented. Additions to the collection are welcome.

The exhibit will be open during the library’s regular business hours through Jan. 13. For more information, contact Mary Atwell at 301-696-3873 or