Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Nativity Scene

The State Auto building in downtown Columbus puts up a large nativity scene display each year, a tradition that began in 1932. They continually add to the collection and it spans quite a large space beside the building. I remember going there as a kid and marveling at the large and lifelike sculptures of the wise men, of Mary and Joseph and the others. 
Each year on Christmas Eve they place baby Jesus in the manger. They put the statues out on display in early December and leave them out until Christmas. Certain nights of the week you can go there to hear local choirs perform. 

This year I was amazed at how many statues they have now. It spans over a lot more space than I remember it did when I was a kid. There are also plaques explaining the story of Jesus from Gabriel's visit to Mary to the wise men to Herod's massacre of children in hopes of killing Jesus. It has been snowing a lot so many of the animals had mounds snow on their backs tonight, and it even started to snow lightly when we were there taking pictures. There were a few other families there doing the same. 
If you have never checked this scene out, I recommend it. It is downtown in a somewhat awkward place to visit near the art museum, but even if you stop for a few minutes, you will be able to enjoy the efforts of the State Auto people. Simply passing it on the street does not give you a good idea of how large or detailed the nativity scene is. There is parking off of a side street for people visiting the "Christmas Corner" and of course there are meters on Broad Street. 
Many people wave the phrase, "Keep the Christ in Christmas," and this is a perfect way to do that.
RADIO: Cinnamon Bear “Wooden Indian”, Jump Jump and the Ice Queen “An Army of Snowmen”, Jonathan Thomas and his Christmas on the Moon “Queen Alice’s Ball”
MOVIE: I saw The Bishop's Wife years ago when I first became interested in old movies. It wasn't
Christmastime, and I sought movies with a lot of excitement. I especially loved pre-code films. That is probably the reason I didn't think much of this film, which is sentimental and moral. Cary Grant plays an angel sent to help a bishop and his wife through a difficult time during the holidays. While it isn't as emotionally potent as It's a Wonderful Life, it has its charms, and the cast is excellent.

SONG: “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let it Snow!” by Vaughn Monroe and His Orchestra  
GIFT MEMORY: When my sister and I became old enough to pick out Christmas gifts for our family, my parents began giving us $5 to buy presents at the dollar store. We used to have a great time finding silly gag gifts, cheap snow globes, and incense at Just a Dollar and the 99 Cent Store in the Town and Country shopping center (historically significant for being the first mall). Most of the things we got ended up being discarded as junk, but occasionally we found things that could be of use. One such item is still on my dad's refrigerator, a small ceramic magnetized bowl that says, "New Car Fund" on the front that my sister bought him. We spent a lot of time at those dollar stores, which are unfortunately no longer in business.

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