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December 9, 2009 > A classic experience

A classic experience

In many parts of the world, tea consumption is not only a refreshing pause from daily activities but also an art form that shapes and defines civil behavior. Rituals celebrate the soothing effect of these plants through intricate preparation and moments of delight as a fastidious brew process results in an exquisite beverage.

Each Christmas season, young ladies of the Tri-City area are invited to enjoy a formal occasion hosted by a group of dedicated women. Traditions, social etiquette and formal behavior are observed as the women "take tea."

In its third year, the Community Christmas Tea, sponsored by Mrs. Jean Ficklin, Mrs. Darlene Green and Mrs. Sandra Smith was held on Saturday, December 5 at South Bay Community Church in Fremont. Four courses included assorted scones, lemon curd, a winter salad, grapes, assorted tea sandwiches, tea cakes, truffles, petit fours and, of course, cups of tea. Young women in attendance took advantage of a colorful array of hats to add additional ambiance to the elegant affair.

The program's theme "Because You Are Loved" began with an introduction by Mistress of Ceremony Mrs. Jean Ficklin followed a prayer and blessings by Youth and Young Adult Pastor Meshia Jones of South Bay Community Church. A welcome by Mrs. Darlene Green and harp music by Mrs. Rosemary Alexander preceded a discussion of the origins of tea and tea ceremonies by Mrs. E.J. Hilliard. Poetry reading by Mrs. Lottie Jackson followed.

Tea service, decorations and tablescapes were provided by Joyce Loggins and staff; tea accoutrements were displayed by Jean Ficklin. Many others provided various donations and volunteered their services to continue this tea as a cherished community event.

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