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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.

Art Ritchie

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About Art Ritchie

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 09/22/1973

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    https://www.facebook.com/MadMooJuice

Profile Information

  • My favorite Christmas story
    I love the large, free, 3 day event that my church puts on that is our gift back to the community and I love being a part of it all!
  • Location
    Cabot, Arkansas, USA
  • Biography
    Retired 20yr USAF Aircraft Hydraulic Technician. Wonderful family of 3 girls, 2 boys and 1 beautiful, intelligent holiday loving wife!
  • Interests
    Disc Golf
  • Occupation
    Fluid & Pneumatic Power Systems Design Engineer
  • About my display
    Used to be an ever growing half static, half LOR controlled display of over 50K lights until the storage company wrongfully sold off our unit. Now we are starting over :/

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  1. Wow!! I was here in the beginning when LOR was little project of Dan, "just another member of this crazy PlanetChristmas" crew. I remember helping with one of the first PLUS's back in 2003(?) in Pigeon Forge! I use to be a regular and was up to date on all the options (not that there were a lot back then!). I had settled into the LOR side of things for the control option and life got busy. I lost touch with this great PC community!! Then we lost everything (literally everything) a couple years ago in a wrongful storage unit auction and the frustration put me in a ba-humbug state for a while. Well I've returned and ready to get back into the mix, but...DANG!! There seem to be a million options now! Renard, LOR, Falcon, Animated Lighting, among others...and that's not counting all the box-store knock offs!! So, is there a comparison chart anywhere of the controller options and what they can/can't do? Has someone written up a 'dummy's guide'? Like I said, I'm ready to get back into the swing of things and start my rebuild, but I want to make sure I'm heading down the best path for our future show's! I want to be able to use the thousands of incandescent's we still own, as well as incorporate LED lighting as we upgrade. I want to do awesome shows, but be able to do pixel control in the near future. I'd like something I can gradually add to at a cheap cost (IE DIY Controllers) but not be limited on features. And it has to be something that's not going to be soon phased out, since if I'm going to be sinking my paychecks into this, I want it to last for along while! Any help guys?? And to all the old faces, hey guys!! Good to be back and hope to reconnect!! Art
  2. No, I've had no luck but that was one of the ideas I've come up with. If I can get the time to sit down and work on it, I want to take my existing, non-functioning inflatables and put them on a base that will be detachable from the blower assembly. Then I can make a single blower base that I'll just switch out inflatable bodies as required.
  3. I have several inflatables that have weak or completely dead fans. Anybody familiar with the output flow of the stock fans and the comparability of other fan/motor assemblies? I have four upright vacuums that I have rescued from trash piles. All motors work and I'm wondering if routing the motor and/or ducting to blow INTO the inflatable would provide enough flow to do the job. Maybe it wouldn't work to act as the only source, but if piggy-backed to blow air in WITH the weaker original motor? Also, I have a larger blower that belonged to one of those 13' water slide/pool combo's and I was thinking of using some ducting to create a sort of octupus to divide the air flow to several defunct inflatables. Thoughts? Suggestions? Anyone have any experience with this ideas? Art
  4. I havent been able to engage my passion for extreme holiday decorating for the past 3-4 years due to....well....due to life. As a result, I havent been around the forums for quite some time, aside from the occasional check-in. Today, I saw a sign on a telephone for 'We can decorate your house!' and it got me wondering. Is the enthusiast community still hopping strong? Is it still growing and working on a myriad of projects all year long? Or has the hobby taken a hit and seen a decline in forces? I know its hard to judge just by looking at the forums, as history shows that the forums get pretty quiet after the holidays and stay that way for a while. Just curious how everyone else has been effected by times. Later peoples!! Art
  5. That looks really good! Especially love the little green ribbon sticking out. Breaks up the monotony of the cane nicely, Well done!
  6. I've been looking for the TV shows this year showing the 'extreme decorators' or the decorating challenges on channels like HGTV, Discovery, TLC or any of those. Unless I'm missing something, I haven't seen much of ANYTHING this year! Anyone know if they are airing this year? Art
  7. Hey RAB, its probably blocked. I cant see it on my work computer either. I cant get most of the videos to come up unless their on Vimeo and even have problems with some pictures, depending on where they are saved.
  8. Ok all you Arkies and nearby folks. No interest last year apparently. What about this year? Are there even any Arky folken still lurking these here boards? If so, lets get together. Even if its just an occasional drink at the pub!!
  9. Ah....I see now!! Thanks for the visual! Hmmmm....got some tinkering to do now.
  10. Nice! Looks so much more inspiring when you see it in actual use! And I like the ice skaters too! Looks like I have a few more projects on my plate this year. Just how much is 'too much', anyway? lol
  11. Getting back into the groove of this decorating insanity, I just found out about doityourselfchristmas.com's forums. Theres a lot of interesting things floating around over there. One of which was the snowfall tubes. I was reading one of the threads about "Finally affordable Snowfall Tubes" and it got my gears workin' in this rusty old brain. They mention that one of the tubes they are working on has something like 56 LED's on it. What about a 4 channeled pole, ending with 'branches' bending outward, where the 56 LED's are divided amongst? These LED's could be on channel 5. Then you could light the channels in order, allowing it to look like a firework shooting up and ending in the twinkling burst of LED lights? Attached is a rough sketch done in MSPaint.
  12. My apologies for abandoning this post!! Using the Google Books search, I was able to find the particular issue I was refering to. As JFTiger mentioned, it was the Dec 65 issue. http://books.google.com/books?id=beQDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA128&dq=popular+mechanics+christmas&hl=en&sa=X&ei=PsoCT56mI4aJtwfb_eHSBg&ved=0CFUQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q=popular%20mechanics%20christmas&f=false
  13. Now that things in my life are seeming to settle down, I'm starting to get back into the holiday decorating thing slowly but surely. Hopefully, after nearly three years away from my PC family, I'll be reappearing and making a bigger contribution. Right now, I'm having a problem though with a lighting issue. I want to put some lights in my village. I am using minilights as I have a large surplus of these laying around. My switch is a 3-way switch (ON1-OFF-ON2). I would like ON1 to turn on 4 of the 6 minilights, while switching to ON2 enables all 6 bulbs. I know I could install a dimmer knob and prob make things simpler, but I dont like the look of the 6 dimmed bulbs. I thought I had this figured out, but when I wired it up, all 6 turned on regardless of being in ON1 or ON2. Not sure what I did wrong. I did it on the fly, without sketching it out, at 3 in the morning. It might not be wired up as I drew it out in this pic. Should it work if I did wire it as sketched or do I need to take a different approach? Any help would be greatly appreciated!!
  14. I know this has been asked in the past and interest seemed low, but figured I'd drop it again. It seems to me like interest in decorating for most of the central Arkansas crowd has done a nose dive. I thik we need to find something to both re-energize our ranks and possibly drain some new enthusiasts!! What do yall say??
  15. This is a screenshot of that video to show the house.
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