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Experience • Longevity • Results
Rustic “Chunky” Apple Cake RECIPE BY CHRIS XAVER
Local Calendar: December
CORTLAND, ITHACA & CNY
The Bailey Sisters: Carol Coombs (Janie) & Karolyn Grimes (Zuzu) From the film classic It’s a Wonderful Life.
Fast Facts Festival: The Seneca Falls It’s a Wonderful Life Festival Dates: December 13, 14, 15 Phone: Museum: 315-568-5838 Committee: 315•568•6917
Visitor Center: 315-568-1510
Wonderful Run 5K: 315-568-1438
Photos Courtesy of Seneca Community Players, Henry Law and Linda Solan.
It’s a Wonderful Life in Seneca Falls
the waning days of 1945, a stranger strolled into the Seneca Falls, NY barbershop of young Tommy Bellissima for a haircut. Recognizing each other’s Italian heritage, they chatted in a friendly fashion, the stranger introducing himself as Frank Capra. He was in the area visiting family in nearby Auburn. Tom didn’t go to the movies. The name Capra didn’t mean anything to him other than its Italian translation as “goat.” This was a time when Hollywood’s Frank Capra was working to complete a satisfactory screenplay for his first post-war directorial project, It’s A Wonderful Life, that would ultimately be released in December 1946.
Finger Lakes Times article that December, which in turn opened the floodgates for media attention on this modest community. Everything seems to fit, including the location of Bedford Falls, clearly in upstate New York. The film contains references to Rochester, Elmira and Buffalo. The original screenplay even identifies the college Harry Bailey attends as Cornell University, a reference dropped from the final script. Seneca Falls is in the right place.
Fast forward to 1995, when a local newspaper reporter asks a whimsical question, “Have you ever considered the possibility that Seneca Falls may have provided inspiration for Bedford Falls in It’s A Wonderful Life?” That question grew into a front page
What’s HOT December 2013
2013 IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE FESTIVAL
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Junction 281 & 13 • Cortland, NY 13045 • Phone: 607-756-2021
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