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Holtz Hall of Fame announces Christmas open house

Morning Journal/Stephanie Ujhelyi Frank Dawson, president of the Lou Holtz Upper Ohio Valley Hall of Fame, stands in a room housing the museum’s large electric train display. The Holtz HOF will be holding an open house celebration from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday Dec. 18 at the 120 E. Fifth St. location. Trainmaster Emory Wright will be operating the display during the event, which showcases rotation of many of the exhibits on display. The event will be the first public admission to the museum since its closing due to the pandemic. An eventual grand reopening tentatively is scheduled for early spring.

The Lou Holtz Upper Ohio Valley Hall of Fame will host a Christmas Open House celebration from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 18 at the 120 E. Fifth St. location in East Liverpool.

Closed for the last year, the facility has undergone numerous changes in recent months under the direction of president Frank Dawson and volunteer Kade Reynolds. Updates include repair and restoration of the game area in the lower level, along with additions to the large electric train display, which will be operating during the open house by trainmaster Emory Wright.

The main floor has also undergone numerous changes with the rotation of many displays and the inclusion of items on loan from former inductees, including the football uniform worn by Jerome Bettis in his final game with the Steelers at Super Bowl XL on Feb. 5, 2006. Other items consist of a portion of the Berlin Wall courtesy of the family of the late Gen. Bob McCoy, a pair of miniature bronze creations by world class sculpture Jerry McKenna and an album of the last sales presentations produced by the late Ben Feldman.

An area featuring a large collection of Pretty Boy Floyd memorabilia also will be on display, including the “Tommy Gun” used in the Oct. 22, 1934, pursuit that resulted in the death of the Oklahoma outlaw. One of only five original death masks of the famous gangster also will be in a secure area as well as many photographs of one of the most famous events in East Liverpool history.

The event will be the first public admission to the museum since its closing due to the pandemic with an eventual grand re-opening tentatively scheduled for early spring.

Complimentary refreshments will be served along with live music played by guitarist Blake Anderson with Amy Dunlap providing accompaniment on the piano of famous hymn writer Will Thompson.

Santa Claus will provide a free gift for each attendee along with a chance to win a complete Lionel electric freight train donated by Crouse Hardware of North Lima. The drawing will be held at 4 p.m.

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