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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.

Thorrocks

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About Thorrocks

  • Rank
    Distinguished Member

Profile Information

  • Location
    Rhode Island
  • Biography
    Im 20, work for disney right now... and I have a 80,000 light, and 64 channel display.
  • Interests
    Disney, Christmas!
  • Occupation
    Pastry Chef
  • About my display
    80.000 lights!

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  1. I'll have to look into that, did you use it in a mold?
  2. Hey guys, for the past few years now I've done many plywood displays. My most recent was The Polar Express and that project was a more three dimensional setup, but having my plywood cutouts of the conductor and little boy in front of the train it really showed some flatness. So I'm starting to get my feet wet in Foam carving and fiber glassing, creating my own 3D sculptors. If anyone has worked with these materials before and could offer some tips that would be fantastic! Thanks a lot guys and I'll be sure to keep you all posted on my progress!
  3. Hey guys, for the past few years now I've done many plywood displays. My most recent was The Polar Express and that project was a more three dimensional setup, but having my plywood cutouts of the conductor and little boy in front of the train it really showed some flatness. So I'm starting to get my feet wet in Foam carving and fiber glassing, creating my own 3D sculptors. If anyone has worked with these materials before and could offer some tips that would be fantastic! Thanks a lot guys and I'll be sure to keep you all posted on my progress!
  4. Yes, I've got an outdoor speaker mounted right under the boiler area that loops a 5 min audio spiel that I spliced together from the movie! If anyone wants that audio I'll gladly send it to you!! Also for this year, the engine will move...I've cut the black opening of the tunnel out and put the engine on a track...It'll move in and out on a timer
  5. Oh no, luckily for us....all we got was a little rain and some 70 mph winds.....When I build something...I make sure its solid....I even do "wind tests" with 2 leaf blowers haha...To try and simulate ...But as far as next year goes....Thats a good question....Better start thinking now!
  6. Thanks Scot, it really is my pride and joy for this season!!! However.....this hurricane has me very uneasy about it right now....It is still in the yard....But its tied down very very well...I dont believe its going anywhere
  7. Hey there fellow Rhode Islanders! Today I spent the afternoon at the Make a Wish office in East Providence speaking with Ashley...This year I'll be raising money for them and while we were talking in the office she mentioned how a few of you will be collecting as well. During our meeting I came up with the idea that maybe....We could all come together and raise money as a group to grant a wish, I'm sure some of you know that granting a wish requires about $8,000. While I know I can raise about $5,000 easily...I'd hate to come up short...So folks what do we think here? Perhaps if we promote one another and become a small group..it could really help raise even more money for a child in need...and allow more visitors to enjoy our displays!
  8. My garage is a working one, not to mention we have about 6 people living in the house so our driveway is always full....However 2 years ago my father invested in a 24 hour surveillance system for me...along with the fact that we're in one of the safest towns in the state..Im not worried to much about vandals
  9. Thats really really WEIRD.....Where in the world is that Home Depot?!!!!!!! Well today i got to install the display in its location for the season!!!.... Any suggestions?
  10. I really have no idea where I'll be storing this beast...But Im sure I'll find a home for it!
  11. You know its funny because that was something that was always missing from my display....Things to look at...Just static displays...No flash, zing or pop...Just something to say...hey look at that!...As far as Storage....thats a REALLY funny question.......ha.
  12. Well a few years back I built a Polar Express...just the engine, that was about 6 feet in length and about 5ft in height...Well I wanted to do something on a much larger scale...and In order to do something along the lines of that...There was no way I could build the entire Engine...So a tunnel was the answer to my problem!
  13. Here on my facebook page for my display...is a video of the train with its Steam and Sound effects!...I made a 5Min loop of engine sounds along with Tom Hanks saying All Aboard, and This is the Polar Express! .... https://www.facebook.com/#!/photo.php?v=434492096612992&set=vb.247841811944689&type=2&theater Find us on facebook! The Crazy Christmas House
  14. First of thank you for the comments, not to mention the questions! Haha. okay so first off.... 1. The setup breaks into three pieces...The Tunnel portion is two 4x8 sheets of plywood..where they meet in the middle I cut a 2 inch wide strip of plywood and attached it to the center to cover the seem from any back lighting...Also that crown piece at the top helps cover a seem as well. As far as moving...its pretty light...just a little large and awkward to do it alone...however it can be done..The Train itself is one piece..It has 2x4 supports under it..and a black wire attached to the tunnel from the "boiler" of the train for a little extra stability. 2.First started with 3 sheets of 4x8 plywood sheets...2 were used for the back of the tunnel and the 3rd for general use. I used 3, 2x4's and cut 3/4 inch blocks for the bricks...Then soaked the bricks in a redish brown water slurry mix..I just guessed on what to make as far as color and water ratio...placed all the wooden blocks in the bucket and let them soak for about 8 hours, then spread them out to dry on a tarp. Once they were dry I used wood glue and placed each one down in a traditional brick pattern all around the tunnel entrance. Then with a nail gun I nailed each block with 1inch finish nails. Once the bricks were all in black..I layed down the tan brick molding then painted it. As far as the train goes, I made circle wooden discs for the boiler and put 2x4 suppers between the two...then wrapped it with old schoolbasementt woodpanelingg. From there I just eyeballed what type of design I wanted the train to have...and added little mechanical looking pieces here and there to give it the look I wanted. I'll postup closee photos!. 3.Its funny you say that..Because this type of setup would be PERFECT for a garage door opening...As long as the unit is bolted together...I cant see what it cant be put on casters. I would think if you could attach on side to the house with a hinge...so it sings like a gate..for a little extra stability...This is an ideal setup to hide such a boring space.
  15. Thanks guys! Ive never really done anything on a professional level, or even school level...Im only 21 years old and for the past few years now, Ive just worked on displays for my yard setup each year...I suppose with each display its just a Little ore practice for me. I even created a housing unit for speakers...The train will have engine sounds, a whistle blowing,,and bell chime playing softly so that when your within 5-8 feet of it...you'll hear it....Just to add a little more realism to it! Oh and a fog machine for steam of course!
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