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  • The original Rudolph did not have a red nose. In that day and age, red noses were seen as an indicator of chronic alcoholism and Montgomery Ward didn’t want him to look like a drunkard. To complete the original picture, he was almost named Reginald or Rollo.
  • The Christmas wreath was originally hung as a symbol of Jesus. The holly represents his crown of thorns and the red berries the blood he shed.
  • The three traditional colors of most Christmas decorations are red, green and gold. Red symbolizes the blood of Christ, green symbolized life and rebirth, and gold represents light, royalty and wealth.
  • Tinsel was invented in 1610 in Germany and was once made of real silver.
  • The oldest artificial Christmas trees date back to the late 1800s and were made of green raffia (think grass hula skirts) or dyed goose feathers. Next the Addis Brush Company used their machinery that wove toilet brushes to create pine-like branches for artificial Christmas trees that were less flammable and could hold heavier decorations.
  • ‘Jingle Bells’ – the popular Christmas song was composed by James Pierpont in Massachusetts, America. It was, however, written for thanksgiving and not Christmas.
  • Coca-Cola was the first company that used Santa Claus during the winter season for promotion.
  • Hallmark introduced their first Christmas cards in 1915.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
michael b

Florida Mini 09' September 19th at Lori's Lighted D'Lites!

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Four days until I don't see Chuck Hutchings...:rolleyes:

BUT I will see all of you! :D

Tips:

Make sure you don't just sit and let everything happen around you. Talk to others and find someone you can talk to about their display and you about yours. Ask questions.

If you happen to find a group of people who are talking about a certain subject you are interested in, join that group. If we start a presentation that doesn't interest you, stay with your group and skip the presentation.

This is a day for you to learn, meet others, form bonds of mutual interest, eat, laugh, buy some stuff/sell stuff/trade stuff.

If you have a special diet, please bring it with you.

I have been to 4 Minis. One thing I have learned is to bring a captain's chair that is comfortable. I leave it in the car, but if I need it, I get it out.

Please come up to me and introduce yourself. :)

See you in 4 days!

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Update and tips:

Attendees: 67 confirmed

I have sent out PMs to everyone who showed any interest in attending, please respond if you haven't already.

E-mail me: [email protected] and I will send you the agenda.

Drive the speed limit in Waldo and Lawtey, they are known speed traps.

Check the calendar for constant updates.

Prepare yourself to meet some amazing people.

Come up and introduce yourself to me. Meeting all of you is my favorite part of a Mini.

See you all in 3 days!

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Update and tips:

71 signed up to attend.

Two days to go.

Several people are meeting at Cowboy Steak House, at 7:30 pm, on Friday. Let Bill Vanderslice know if you plan on going by posting here or PMing him.

Dress for comfort. We will be in a 10,000' warehouse/showroom. There is no air conditioning, however it has high ceiling and the ventilation is good. I have check the temps for Saturday and the seem reasonable.

Waldo and Lawtey are know speed traps, please drive the speed limit.

Bring a camera. You will want to photograph some display items, so you can see it later.

My daughter Katie and I will see everyone in two days!

Michael

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2 more days to our mini with attendance now at 70. Yippee!!! More good news. Just received the Cosmic Ribbon LED Lights from LOR and now to mount it to arch to demonstrate at our min. LOR was kind enough to donate a CTB 16 PC ready to go controller that will be given away as a door prize. Somebody is going to be very happy winning this controller. Wish it could be me but everyone would think the drawing was rigged so my name won't be in the drawing. Darn it! We will have special show price on the cosmic ribbon and we will be writting orders if anybody is interested. Billing will be handled by LOR. See many of you at Fri night dinner, will see the rest of you Sat morning. Drive safely, watch the speed limits and be ready for a great mini and a good time.

Bill

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Update:

74 attending: 68 adults and 6 kids (ages 9-14)

Bill will be at the dinner Friday night. I am coming up Saturday morning.

I'm excited about a fun time! :santasmileyitty:

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I have a few things that I can bring to the Mini if any interest...or if you're in route, I can meet you on the return trip.

An idea of what I have is: 50 wireframes, 55 inflatables(40 Christmas and 15 Halloween), 30 flood light holders (new), New Santa Suit w/all accessories including boots, welder, 3 tree Light Show, 8 artificial trees (some lit), 50' reach bucket truck, 12' Snowflake wall, Holdman star, 20' leaping arches(9 channels), floral easels(3' and 4'), lawn lights(new), mini trees (multi and RGW), small fog machines, fogger timers, bubble foggers, Spiral trees(multi and clear), overhead projector, wreaths(RGW), donation box, 5' round folding tables, 3-D deer, small plastic jack-o-lanterns, DJ spot 250, color washes, LOR's, Mega Tree setup for telescoping flag pole, Candy Canes(unlit), Empire santa w\green sack, styrofoam tombstones, Marcus the carcus, Multi color 450ct (new), multi color 100ct(new), extension cords, etc...

Anyway, you get the idea. No LED's and no other blowmolds. Just ask and if I don't know, I'll try to find out...and everything is packed so no pics, but I will let you know the condition. And please no low ball offers. I will sell for a deal, but I don't have to sell today. Items will go to first contacts.

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Good morning to all! Many of you are traveling to Lawtey today. I'll pray that you have a safe drive. My daughter and I will be arriving tomorrow morning.

Tonight, Bill Vanderslice will be greeting many of you at Cowboy Steak House at 7:30 pm. It looks like there will be aroud 20 people tonight.

We still had decorators signing up last night.

Remember to drive the speed limit in Waldo and Lawtey. They are known speed traps. :cool:

Our goal of The Florida Mini is to bring together Christmas decorators so they can meet each other, share ideas, help each with their unique and common challenges, learn, to have fun, and finally:

To realize they are not the only crazy light nut around! :santasmileyitty:

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I have some good news! I was supposed to go up to Titusville tomorrow to pick up a car and drive it back to Miami but it will not be ready until next week.

You know what THAT means...

Yep - it means I'm now free to not drive all the way to Georgia to attend the Florida Mini.

Have fun and take lots of pics.

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I have some good news! I was supposed to go up to Titusville tomorrow to pick up a car and drive it back to Miami but it will not be ready until next week.

You know what THAT means...

Yep - it means I'm now free to not drive all the way to Georgia to attend the Florida Mini.

Have fun and take lots of pics.

Man, I can't believe Chuck is not going...I thought for sure he would change his mind and go at the last minute...so I decided I am not going now...it is such a long drive....wait...it is only a 25 minute drive for me, never mind...I changed my mind again...I am going now...

Yes, if you are going north through Lawtey and Waldo, please slow down to the speed limit or you will be losing all the wire frame money you are bringing with you. These towns are the only towns in AMERICA that AAA motor club considers a legitimate SPEEDTRAP - thats right, they are famous nationwide!

http://www.aaasouth.com/acs_news/9203.asp

If anyone is leaving the mini plus early to go back south on these same roads, beware that the Gator football traffic is going to be very heavy going into Gainesville...I am not looking forward to it for I will probably be heading back after lunch...

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J. J.,

Chuck is chicken! Last year at my house he almost got whacked by a large Christmas decortation that almost took his head off. :eek: :giggle:

Man, I can't believe Chuck is not going...I thought for sure he would change his mind and go at the last minute...so I decided I am not going now...it is such a long drive....wait...it is only a 25 minute drive for me, never mind...I changed my mind again...I am going now...

Yes, if you are going north through Lawtey and Waldo, please slow down to the speed limit or you will be losing all the wire frame money you are bringing with you. These towns are the only towns in AMERICA that AAA motor club considers a legitimate SPEEDTRAP - thats right, they are famous nationwide!

http://www.aaasouth.com/acs_news/9203.asp

If anyone is leaving the mini plus early to go back south on these same roads, beware that the Gator football traffic is going to be very heavy going into Gainesville...I am not looking forward to it for I will probably be heading back after lunch...

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JJ -

That's right. I know Michael has it in for me. He's been trying to have me whacked for years now and he's trying to make it look like an accident.

The "large decoration" he referred to was a 200 lb monster steel sign that fell right next to me as I was hitting on Danielle. It nearly killed both of us and left a huge gouge in his concrete driveway.

Oops - did I say "hitting on"? I meant "talking about Christmas decorations to". :P

I think I'll stay down here in Miami this weekend, thank you very much.

Edited by ChuckHutchings

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JJ -

That's right. I know Michael has it in for me. He's been trying to have me whacked for years now and he's trying to make it look like an accident.

I think I'll stay down here in Miami this weekend, thank you very much.

Chuck, if you come to the Mini I promise not to whack you or let any whacking going on. We'll even create a whack free zone!:cool:

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I'm going to bed. I'm leaving around 6 am. I won't be checking my email or this thread. If you need anything call Lori's.

I'll see everyone there! Ye-Ha! :cool:

I'll be wearing shorts and a black t-shirt.

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WOW!!!!! What a turn out at the Mini here in Florida today.

I wanted to take a couple of minutes to thank our hosts for their hard work in pulling off a remarkable gathering of the kids-at-heart in Lawtey. I was also pleasantly surprised to see the spectrum in ages, it just goes to show that some people really do not get older, but rather just more "seasoned", it's those "others" that become grinches. :)~

Again, we really could not thank Lori and Gene enough for their assistance with this and please remember to support them whenever you can, they sure do back us well!

Oh, I had an added bonus (besides 16 more channels of LOR....), I think I lost some weight, or at least that's gonna be my story, dang it was hot today.. It was well worth it for me though and I hope everyone got something from the Mini/ Maxi up there.

I'll hush now,

Doug

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Kudo's and a great big thank you go out to Lori and Gene of Lori's Lighted D'Lites for hosting the Florida Mini. What a great Saturday it was. The presentations were informative and the atmosphere was great to get you in the mood for the holiday spirit. In addition to Lori and Gene, I know they had others there helping as well I would like to extend my thanks to them also. I also took home some wire frames and can't wait to go back and buy more.

A thank you also goes out to Michael B. and Bill V. for pulling it together. I know that their efforts are appreciated and you guys chose the perfect spot to host the get together. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. Your going to have a hard time planning the 2010 Mini and having any better meeting place. Lets go back to Lori's!

Again thanks to all that helped to put it together.

Chuck V.

Central Florida

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Thank you Lori,Glen and everone at Lori's, we really appreciate the hospitality that you extended to us today. I look forward to talking and doing business with you in the future!!

To Michael B. and Bill V. thank you for helping to plan and assemble everyone, I am sure it was quite a job to do so well. Thanks also needs to go out to the presenters, all the info about the DIY, LEDS, Wireframes and different softwares has really opened possibilites for me.

Again Thanks!!!!

Steve and Chase

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I would like to thank Lori and Gene for being terrific host. They had everything ready: The building (Yes it was hot, but I needed to lose a few pounds anyway:D), the great food, the free Mini Moose wireframe, the tables, chairs, etc... I know all the work it took for them to host the Mini. Thank you! You both were awesome!

Next, would be Bill Vanderslice. Bill you did an outstanding job coordinating and planning. Your LED knowledge and LED presentation was right-on. Bill was all over the place making sure everything was going right. Bill you are super to work with.

Patti and her husband Richard were great at registration. Thanks for making the name tags and everthing else you did.

I need to thank Gene for his presentation on making wireframes. He gave us some practical hints and ways to save money while making wireframes.

RJ's DIY presentation had many crowded around wanting to know more. He took his crowd outside to finish answering questions. If you are interested in saving money while animating your display, you need to talk to RJ.

Doug's LOR workshop was fun. He led a question and answer session that led to lively interaction among us all. I want to thank Doug for bringing the cooker, helping any way possible, and helping get everything ready.

Thank Lori for showing us how to put lights on Mini Moose. You really make it look easy.

Thank you to Lee for bringing the PA system. With that many people the presenters would have not been heard past the first few rows.

Thank you to Darren for helping out and sharing. He is always there to help where needed.

Thank you to Debra for working with the kids. My Katie had a blast making crafts.

There where to others that helped Gene and Lori, but I can't recall there names. One, a kind gentleman who got the food ready, parked cars, helped in many ways. The other, the nice lady who showed us how to make wireframe, helped us with buying wireframes, and assisted in many other ways. Thank you both.

At last, thank you to all who came. We had an un believable number of 76 attending! Wow! You who decorate for Christmas are a special nice kind of crazy people. :) I really enjoyed meeting you and listening to you. You really are passionate about this wonderful hobby.

Now get out and hang some lights soon. Ye-ha!

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I just arrived home from the mini at 10:30PM tired & beat but feeling good about the mini. I stopped in Ocala and had a nice dinner with Patti & Richard. Jerry K from Mich was supposed to car caravan with us but got lost in Lori's parking lot (I'm guessing-what happened to you Jerry?) so he missed a nice dinner at Denny's. Michael was right on with his thanks and did a good job of covering all the people that made this mini successful. I ditto his comments and thanks 100%. I couldn't have said it near as well as he did! Michael is great guy to work with and I look forward to working with him in the future. One thing I am certain of, there will be a future for the Florida decorator. The fact that we had 76 decorators that drove from all over Florida to make this mini tells me we have the interest and we hope to continue on with organization of Florida members. You will be hearing more about this in the near future. We all what like to hear your comments on this mini. (Which I think could have been called a super mini). Our future mini's will be determined by your ideas on what was successful and what wasn't successful with this mini. Let us know. Make public post or PM Michael or myself if you don't want your feelings posted.

Bill

PS I must apologise on my LED talk as I didn't have enough time to cover many more points that I wanted to make which would have been more useful then the theory behind LEDs. I wanted to cover advantages & disadvantages of LED verses incadescent, sealed LED verses replacement LEDs, cost of operation and payback, and reasons to switch or not switch to LEDs. Guess these points will have to be covered at our next mini. I can only blame myself as I set the schedule and thought I could cover it all in 45'. Wrong!

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Here are a few pictures of the Mini. These are of Gene's wireframe tour and demo. Gene owns Lori's lighted D'Lites with his wife Lori.

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Pictures of Paul showing Bill M his animation window of his leaping arches. The out side of Lori's and a special message. Lori really loves kids. Debra is shown here showing the several kids how to make crafts. My daught made 4 or 5 crafts and she was very proud of them. :)

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