Mary and Joseph brought Jesus Christ into the world in the modest setting of Bethlehem.

Take a step over thousands of years into the past and experience the 32nd annual Walk Thru Bethlehem, hosted at Kings Ave. Baptist Church in Brandon, an authentic re-enactment that brings the biblical city and story of Jesus Christ’s birth to life from the pages of the Holy Scripture.

Guests will be taken through a 20-30 minute guided tour of Bethlehem, where people were taxed as subjects of Caesar Augustus. Attendees can meet all kinds of citizens who existed back then, learn of their various trades and lives, and go through a myriad of booths to learn all about the ancient city, ending the journey with the holy spectacle of Jesus’ birth in a humble manger.

Walk Thru Bethlehem began as a very small production with the idea of bringing Bethlehem from the Bible as a tangible encounter for the Christian community to enjoy. It serves to unify the community and to offer free entertainment to guests. Thirty-two years later, Walk Thru Bethlehem has become one of the largest events in the Tampa Bay area.

The greatest strength of Walk Thru Bethlehem is how it can save people through its physical story and provide togetherness for the community. This is an event that is meant to benefit not only the people, but the individuals as well.

“We want every-one to receive some-thing out of this,” said Abbey Turner, the Director of Marketing for Walk Thru Bethlehem. “This is the truth of Christmas, and the actors and volunteers are passionate about sharing that.”

It is all thanks to the hundreds of volunteers who help make the event hap-pen. Through the effort of youth groups, Boy Scouts, retirees and church members, Walk Thru Bethlehem is born. The event starts production in September with three-hour workdays, and by December construction is complete and focus goes into filling the booths.

This year, there is a change in one of the booths. Someone acting as Jesus will be reading scripture from the Bible.

Walk Thru Bethlehem is a free event available to all. Its schedule is as follows: Thursday, December 6, 6:30-9:30 p.m.; Friday, December 7, 6:30-10 p.m.; Saturday, December 8, 4-10 p.m.; and Sunday, December 9, 4-9 p.m. Kings Ave. Baptist Church is located at 2602 South Kings Avenue, Brandon.

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Taylor Wells is a relatively recently hired news reporter for the Osprey Observer, having been with the paper only since October 8, 2018. Aside from writing articles, he helps edit and upload them to the Osprey Observer site, and is always available to help other staff members in his spare time. He graduated from Saint Leo University with a bachelor’s degree in professional writing and lives in Valrico.