Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites

In association with the Smithsonian Institution

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Holiday Dinner & Auction


Annual Holiday Dinner & Auction
Saturday, December 2, 2023

ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks
Benefactors’ Reception: 5:30 pm • Guests: 6:30 pm
101 Founders Way, Bethlehem, PA 18015

Art Preview Reception

Sunday, November 19, 2023
4 pm - 6 pm • Luckenbach Mill
459 Old York Road, Bethlehem, PA 18018

Moravian Starlight by Erin Pryor Gill
Moravian Starlight by Erin Pryor Gill

2022 Honorees

Edwards Business Systems

A proud supporter of Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites

Edwards Business Systems (EBS) has been in business since 1954 and is one of the country’s largest independently owned Office Technology Dealers, recognized by all our vendors for excellence in sales and service in imaging technology.  EBS is in our third generation of management and ownership, continuing our family commitment of meeting and exceeding the needs of our clients.

Focused on Fast Forward Office Technology, our team develops the solutions needed by our clients for cost-effective, secure, green and innovative imaging technology, storage and printing systems. We deliver Managed Print Services, Workflow Solutions, Document Management, Managed Network Services, VoIP, Multifunctional Printers, Production Print and the services to make everything work and stay working!

Our 135 employees and 12 offices in Pennsylvania and Virginia are charged with upholding the highest ethical standards in our relationships with our clients and with each other.

Edwards is committed to being a contributing member of the communities we serve. We are proud of our support and belief in Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites.  We are very excited about the opportunity for HBMS being named a UNESCO World Heritage site.  We have been fortunate to visit so many UNESCO sites around the world and having one in our own backyard would be an honor for the Lehigh Valley.  Protecting this vital part of our history has been important to our organization and our team members for over a decade.

Bob Bloch

Bob was born on a farm in Zionsville, grew up in Allentown and has been living in Fountain Hill for many years. After high school, he served in the US Navy and, while aboard ship, participated in the Cuban Missile Blockade. Throughout his years in the Navy, Bob corresponded with and later married his future wife, Judy, who would in later years work for the Historic Bethlehem Partnership. They recently celebrated 58 years of marriage and are very proud of their three very successful, talented children and three grandchildren. Their family has been very involved and dedicated to the Historic Bethlehem Partnership for many years. Bob has been employed by HBP for a total of 14 years; Judy worked as an administrative assistant/office manager for 19 years, and their daughter, Lea, has been a volunteer docent at the Kemerer Museum for seven years for a cumulative total of 40 years of service to HBP.

Bob began working at age 13 helping his father support their family by digging graves during a strike at the Bethlehem Steel. In later years, Bob was one of the first hired by the newly built Schaefer/Stroh Brewery in Fogelsville, where he worked for 30 years until forced into an early retirement when Pabst closed the brewery. While working full-time at the brewery he also ran his own aluminum siding/home improvement business working evenings and weekends. Years later, he gave up his siding business and invested in apartment buildings, owning, managing, remodeling and maintaining 24 apartments, again after work and on weekends. Somehow during his career, he managed to lead a Cub Scout den for several years and was a 25-year Musikfest volunteer. Although his only hobbies were work, work, work, he did own a fish and ski boat, which he and his family enjoyed for many years.

Sometime after his early retirement from the brewery, HBP moved their offices to the second floor of the Luckenbach Mill. However, the only kitchen facilities consisted of a wobbly old card table for a coffee pot and a large sink on the floor. After learning that the cabinets were being removed from the Nain House, Charlene acquired them for the Mill and Judy, our then Office Manager, volunteered her husband, Bob, to create a kitchen in a small room of the Mill. So, in just one weekend, Bob, with the help of his son-in-law, installed a new kitchen complete with a donated sink, small refrigerator and microwave. Staff members donated most of the essentials so the only thing HBP had to purchase was an inexpensive countertop. It was at this time that Charlene asked Bob if he would be interested in helping out for a “few hours a week”. This very quickly turned into 36 hours or more each week. He was on call 24/7 doing a multitude of maintenance jobs by day and responding to frequent alarms at night including one 2:00 AM alarm at Burnside that appeared to have been set off by a spider!

Using his own truck and tools, Bob promptly responded to staff requests for whatever needed to be done which included everything from upkeep and repairs to setting up for special events and cleaning up after floods. In 2004, Hurricane Ivan caused unbelievable damage to the Colonial Industrial Quarter which included severe damage to the Mill, Tannery, Waterworks and Springhouse. Just trying to get clean-up help was impossible because of the demand and backlog of cleaning companies. Fortunately, Bob had an industrial power washer of his own and started by hosing down the unusable rest rooms in the Mill which had been under five feet of water and covered with mud. From there he went on to the Tannery, Waterworks and Springhouse, which had been submerged in water up to its roof.

Bob was, and still is, extremely dedicated to HBP and always went above and beyond expectations. After about 11 years, he retired from HBP. Or so he thought! He volunteered to help train his successor but ended up returning to his job four times to train multiple successors. He still helps out voluntarily if needed and drops whatever he is doing to answer a call for help at one of the sites.

Erin Pryor Gill

Erin Pryor Gill is a Lehigh Valley artist skilled in pastels, oils, and various printmaking techniques. Living in Bethlehem with her husband and their three sons, she is inspired daily by the surrounding landscape and historic architecture.

Erin majored in painting and printmaking at Alfred University and received a BFA in Illustration from Rochester Institute of Technology. After several years as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer, she is now focused professionally on her own artwork. She enjoys painting outdoors, in addition to studio work, and has been juried into a number of plein air events including Plein Air Brandywine Valley and Paint Out Chadds Ford. Erin is on the board of the Lehigh Art Alliance and is a signature member of the Pastel Society of New Jersey. She regularly exhibits her work in regional and national juried shows.

“I love landscape painting because there are so many actual, nearby places that I love. I simplify detail, emphasize color, and embrace painterly strokes, but strive to convey a real sense of light and particular place. I’m honored to be selected to represent Historic Bethlehem as the featured artist this year, and excited to share my view of this captivating city.” -Erin Pryor Gill

2022 Holiday Dinner & Auction Committee

Chair: Gail Shook

Johanna Chehi, Dolly Dyer, Andrea Foucek, Connie Gilbert, Jami Howser, Suzanne Mason,
Stephanie Muller, Michelle Olson, Terry Pilitzer, Judy Savchak, Jennifer Van De Voorde, & Ilene Wood

Art Committee: Diane Hutchinson, Dawn Resch, Elena Shackleton, Wendy Steed, & Jennifer Van De Voorde

Benefactor Admission: $300 Per Ticket

Ticket includes:

  • Program book listing
  • Admission to the in-person Benefactors' Art Preview on Sunday November 19, 2023
  • Admission to the Holiday Dinner on Saturday, Dec. 3

To have your name included in the Benefactor listing, please RSVP by November 12.

 

Guest Admission: $250 Per Ticket

Ticket includes:

  • Admission to the Holiday Dinner on Saturday, December 2, 2023

2022 Sponsors

These sponsors provide continued support of Bethlehem's heritage and we hope in turn you will support them.

Want to become a sponsor for the Holiday Dinner & Auction in 2023? Contact Kristy Steier at [email protected], for details.

Major Sponsors

Edwards Business Systems
Allied Building Corporation

Crystal Sponsors

Moravian Village
B Braun
Topper Foundation

Star Sponsors

Lehigh University
Buzzi Unicem
Argyle Capital Management Incs.
PPL
River Wealth Advisors

Lantern Sponsors

CR&Y Certified Public Accotntants
Lehigh Valley Style
St. Luke's

Music Sponsor

Network Magazine

Valet Sponsors

Duggan & Marcon
Victaulic

Dessert Sponsor

ASR Media

Wine Sponsors

Lehigh Valley Press
Working Dog Press

Candle Sponsors

Carol C. Dory Real Estate
Hotel Bethlehem
Lehigh Valley Health Network
Wind Creek Bethlehem
Peer Pressure Creative
Scott Piccotti
Norris McLaughlin PA

Gold Sponsors

Young Advisory Group
MCIT
Stirling Painting
Burkholder's Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.

Silver Sponsors

Christmas City Veterinary Hospital
Moravian Academy

Thank you to our sponsors and guests who we able to attend the 2021 event.  We were able to raise over $200,000 for our mission of to bring history to life by educating the public about Bethlehem’s rich heritage, by preserving historic sites and by collecting, preserving and exhibiting historical and artistic objects that can be used to tell the stories of Bethlehem’s people.

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74 West Broad Street, Suite 310, Bethlehem, PA 18018 | Phone: 610-882-0450 | FAX: 610-882-0460 | [email protected]

Historic Bethlehem Partnership, Inc. is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Registration and financial information about Historic Bethlehem Partnership, Inc. may be obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of State by calling toll-free, within Pennsylvania, 1-800-732-0999, or on the web at www.dos.state.pa.us. Registration does not imply endorsement.