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Did you know?
  • 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.


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Joe Tyria

Beverly A. Tyria Memorial Nativity Scene

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The Beverly A. Tyria Memorial Nativity Scene is a replica of the vintage Nativity Scene that once graced Bronson Park in Kalamazoo, Michigan. It is displayed each year at Christmastime and illuminated from dusk 'til dawn in loving memory of the late Beverly A. Tyria of Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Every effort has been made to recapture the spirit of the display from Downtown Kalamazoo, if not the actual figures, some of which are no longer made.  The only other major difference is the more modern, vibrant color scheme.

All but three of the figures (2 of the sheep and the star) are produced exclusively by Bronner's Commercial Display in Frankenmuth, Michigan. The stable was designed by Joe Tyria and built by Fr. James Richardson of Saint Mary Catholic Church in Kalamazoo.

These are pics of the 2016 Display.  The Magi and Baby Jesus were in need of refurbishing after that, so they were taken to Bronner's Commercial Display in February 2017.  












Here are pics of the 3 Magi and Baby Jesus after having been refurbished by Bronner's Commercial Display in February of 2017.

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All I can say is AWESOME! You are a very special person for carrying on the tradition of your grandmother. Really do like the set. It is just beautiful and I could just see it lit up at night. I know it is breathtaking.

Keep up the GREAT work there Joe and thank you for sharing the pics with us.

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