Area families continue tradition of Belsnickel

Before going to sleep last night a number of children throughout the area made sure their shoes would be easy to find in anticipation of the annual visit from Belsnickel, who stops by many homes each year on the eve of the feast of St. Nicholas.The tradition of Belsnickel has changed somewhat over the years. At one time he was an intimidating figure who actually showed up at people's homes to make sure their children were behaving and saying their prayers. Today, he often only makes his annual visit after children are asleep, leaving small presents in the shoes of those who have not been misbehaving.