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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.

roadrunner

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About roadrunner

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    New Member

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  • Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
  • Interests
    christmas lighting, hiking, birding, native american flute
  • Occupation
    software engineer
  1. I had a similar experience the first couple of years that I did my lights -- contacted papers, sent videos to local news, and only got fairly light visitation and no media interest (but those that did, stayed for a 20 minutes before leaving). I kind of got frustrated that it was so hard to get visibility (and that was back when computerized lighting was fairly unusual). Then one year a local TV station contacted me and came out to do interviews and live segments on the 5, 6, and 10 o'clock news. Before the 5 pm news was even over cars started showing up. That year I had way too many cars, gridlock at time in my culdesac, and even though my neighbors were positive I knew that things were getting out of hand for my own taste. I also had to shorten the show significantly to turn over cars. I had finally gotten what I thought I wanted and didn't like the resulting hassles... After taking the last two seasons off, I'm back live this year and traffic so far is fairly light. I got contacted by the local paper who was interested in doing a story and I actually declined, saying that I wasn't actively seeking publicity and prefered to have the display for friends, neighbors, and those who stumble upon it by driving by or from word of mouth. I'd prefer a smaller number of people to have a really nice experience watching the full show than a larger crowd watching a shorter show and inconveniencing my very tolerant neighbors. Depending on where you live and what your streets/neighbors are like, one of the ironies of display popularity is that it can ultimately make you limit or even shutdown your display... I think Tim is right though, it is natural to see a continued year by year increase of traffic as word of mouth spreads and families include visiting your display into their own holiday traditions, etc. Great job on your display!
  2. Ha! Funny you should mention it, I've just been upgrading my LOR software (for the first time in a looong time) and just configured/tested my old homemade Dasher hardware controllers! I still run 32 ports of Dasher Controller ports in addition to a bunch of LOR hardware. Still seems to work great. Well back to work, I'm running my display for the first time after taking the last two years off and have a lot of work to do before lights on next friday! cheers, Warren
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