NEWTOWN BOROUGH >> The Newtown Historical Association on Saturday announced the winners of its “Home for the Holidays” photo contest.

The historians launched the contest just after Thanksgiving by issuing a challenge to photographers of all abilities to capture the beauty of the holiday season in and around Newtown Borough.

The community didn’t disappoint, flooding the association with close to 100 contest entries documenting the joy of the holiday season in lights and decorations.

The NHA organized the contest in lieu of its annual Holiday House Tour, which had to be cancelled this year due to the pandemic. The event is always a favorite of the holiday season.

NHA President Barry Fleck joined Mayor Corky Swartz, contest organizers Mary Jo Garner and Kenya Crawford and Newtown Borough Councilor Nicole Rodowicz in the backyard of the Court Inn to announce the winners of the contest.

“I’d like to thank everyone for contributing,” said Fleck. “When we thought about the contest, one of the concepts that was important is that we really do live in a beautiful historic town. And given the difficulties of the year, we felt it would be a good idea to just stop a moment, take a look around and experience that beauty. A photo contest for this time of year was a natural.”

According to Fleck, the association received 96 entries, all showcasing the beauty of Newtown.

“What you see here in the winning pictures really speaks words and volumes about the beautiful community we live in,” said Fleck. “Obviously the role of the Newtown Historic Association is to protect and preserve that heritage. And in this contest, we wanted the community to see it and share it.”

The contest was judged by Mayor Swartz, Newtown Borough Councilor Nicole Rodowicz and amateur photographer Geraldo Konig.

Taking first place for a decorated front porch on Chancellor Street was Susan Smith of Newtown Borough.

Second place was won by Lydia Irvins of Newtown Borough for a photo of the Lovi home on North State Street framed by an antique lamppost.

And Laura Brandt of Yardley captured third place for a moonlit photo of the decorated Gusty home on Washington Avenue.

“I took that in the full moon on Dec. 30,” said Brandt. “When I was there around 7:30 pm the moon was right over the house.”

The three first place winners were each presented with a print done by borough artist Craig Hackett who donated them as contest prizes.

Honorable mentions went to Barry Fleck for a snowy scene of The Temperance House and Sharon Kiryluk for her decorated front porch dusted with snow.

“It’s wonderful that the Historical Association has taken this project on and done this for the community as well as for the residents,” said Mayor Swartz. “It’s important to acknowledge what people do in the community. By decorating their houses and the other things they do it makes Newtown Newtown.”

The contest was organized by Maryjo Garner, Kenya Crawford, Browyn Jones and Sue Thompson. And the photos can be viewed on the Newtown Historical Association website at

In addition to spotlighting the beauty of Newtown, the contest raised money through entry fees for the historical association in an especially trying year for nonprofits.

The money will be put toward the upkeep and maintenance of the Court Inn and its Mercer Street Research Center, which houses a collection of photographs, maps, deeds, wills, diaries, genealogies, memorabilia, books and more documenting Newtown’s past, from its founding to today.

To donate to the association, send checks made payable to the Newtown Historic Association to 105 Court Street, PO Box 303, Newtown, PA 18940 or visit

The Newtown Historic Association, Inc. was incorporated in 1964 as an organization dedicated to the preservation of Newtown’s historic heritage. Its mission is to stimulate interest in, preserve, celebrate and share the historic significance of both Newtown borough and township.

Its research center, open to the public by appointment, contains a repository of deeds, wills, diaries, books, maps, photos, genealogies and other documents relating to Newtown and the surrounding area, especially strong in the period when Newtown was the County Seat (1725-1813), including a special collection on early America’s foremost folk painter, Edward Hicks (1780-1849).

Its headquarters are located in the Court Inn (known as the Half-Moon Inn during the mid 18th century), located at the corner of Court Street and Centre Avenue in historic Newtown. The Inn is open for tours showcasing the Half Moon Inn (Court Inn) and the many artifacts and holdings of the Newtown Historic Association.

The Court Inn is located at 105 Court Street, P.O. Box 303, Newtown18940. Hours are Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Thursdays from 7 to 9 p.m. and by appointment. Info: 215-968-4004,, and on Facebook at

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