The History of Angel Avenue

When the weather cools off and the season begins to change, downtown College Avenue in Appleton, WI showcases its own holiday magic in the form of a long-standing tradition.

The “Avenue of Angels” has been blessing College Avenue with aesthetic beauty since the 1960’s. We can thank Frances Burstein and her family for that.

In 2003, when the tradition was faced with a budget problem, a guardian angel in her own nature, Frances Burstein, graciously donated money to have the angels renovated. A lifelong admirer of the holiday custom, Burstein wanted nothing more than to see the decor continue to light up the town as they light up the lives of people that come to see them. Burstein very much loved the city of Appleton and the annual holiday tradition that came with it.

The tradition started in 1960 when a set of angels were put on display and would be annually placed until 1978. From there the angels were changed out for large candle decorations until the angels made their return in 1990. The tradition has not changed to this day, thanks in large part to Burstein and her family.

Unfortunately, Burstein left us in 2012 at the age of 95 but she never feels too far away, especially this time of year. But the kindness of Frances Burstein lives on in her daughter, Dr. Penny Krampien. Thanks to an act of selflessness by her daughter in 2015, the tradition has never been stronger as she too, donated to the fund in order to keep the “Avenue of Angels” alive and well.

The nostalgia and wonder these decorations bring to College Avenue show the true meaning of Christmas. The Copperleaf is extremely thankful to have angels right outside our establishment. Because of Burstein and her family, our guests get to step out and witness the astonishing sight that is the “Avenue of Angels.” If you’re interested in experiencing this tradition while you’re in town, book a stay with us and be witness to the beauty of College Avenue during the holidays.

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