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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.

socrnet

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About socrnet

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 10/08/1952

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    http://www.christmasatthemckinneys.com/
  • Facebook
    Christmas at the McKinneys

Profile Information

  • My favorite Christmas story
    3rd of 4th season I had blown up my knee in September so my best friend flew in from California and with my sons help put up most my display. We were up and running by Thanksgiving and we're out watching the show to make any adjustments that were needed. My friend came over and wanted me to talk to a older gentleman that had pulled up to watch the show. So I limped over and he rolled down his window and proceeded to tell me how special the light show was to him, because it made him think of how magical Christmas was when he was a child. So if you folks out there ever doubt why you do what you do that's why.
  • Location
    Wichita, Kansas, USA
  • Biography
    old guy with a year long hobby without knowing it. and there is no a a. group for light addicts.
  • Interests
    right now interested in animated lighting how to information
  • Occupation
    Retired
  • About my display
    9th year guy using AL equipment with over 300 channels. Somewhere around 125,000 lights last year, but who can keep count. Running about 99% leds. 48 mini trees and counting, 25' megatree, 4 multi stripe trees 6' and 8', 3 20' arches and 2 10' arches and last but not least 2 10' and this year 1 15' spiral trees.

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  1. socrnet

    Area Get Together

    Sorry, I've been up to my neck in it since I posted this. I'm still up for a get together. I'm not sure how to contact the usual suspects. Let me look for the page I had that had phone numbers and such. If you all see some of the usual guys tell them to go to Planet Christmas and post a reply. Thanks!
  2. socrnet

    Area Get Together

    Now that we have all or most of our lights put away. Is anyone interested in getting together in the next month or so? Maybe to just kick it around and talk about what worked and what didn't or what new stuff you might have in mind for the upcoming season.
  3. I see Mel, Lyman, Dave, eagle5 and his brother. Are there any others planning to come? I need a rough head count and we'll order pizza for around noon on Saturday. Thanks!
  4. My address is 1462 N. Coolidge, Wichita Ks. 67203 - phone number is 316-721-5719. Nearest main intersection is 13th and Amidon which is at 13th and the river. From Amidon and 13th go east across the bridge and you'll pass a quick shop of sorts on your left. Turn right (North) on the next street which is Coolidge. Follow your nose almost straight North for about three blocks. My house is white with green shutters on your right. There's a long driveway and you can come in the front door or the door on the North side of the house. You all want to do this at noon? Let me know what time works for everyone.
  5. Hey guys, the 7th would be fine with me. If you'd like my house works for me. I don't have anything new for next season to show off, but I did fine tune the engineering of my 10 ft. spiral trees. Now I can really tell you what not to do.
  6. Hey guys, my place is alway open for the get together. Just let me know when you want to have it.
  7. socrnet

    Ham-plus Topics?

    How about programming affects? I assume they're close to the same no matter what software you use. Even though I've been programming for 4 yrs I'm not sure what an effect will always look like when I fire up my show. I would think you'd get some real good input from the old timers and It would really help folks that are new to doing their own programming. Plus is Light Show Pro still a upcoming new thing? If so I would sure like to see someone talk about it and how if works converting sequences from other softwares and such.
  8. socrnet

    Ham-plus Topics?

    How about a thought or two on handling donations? Also, I've had what I believe are network problems over the last three years. Maybe some talk about networking. Do's, don'ts, cabling, hubs, etc. Spiral trees how too's? Just keep the agenda on things that might interest the entire group whatever the subject matter is.
  9. socrnet

    Light Show Videos

    rjnitto and musicman, first time I've seen your displays. Great stuff. Where are you folks located? I'd like to seem them in person.
  10. socrnet

    Light Show Videos

    I ran across a group of local fellas and had them shoot video and stills the last day we were up. He's working on sycning two shots and the music. Hoping to get a good product in a week or so. For the local folks if the videos are good I'll get his info posted. He was very reasonable and I know that shooting and editing video is always a big pain for me.
  11. socrnet

    Ham This Year?

    You can count me in. I'm looking forward for another get together.
  12. socrnet

    Local Light Shows

    Hey, made the rounds again and everyone's show looked great. I finally got to Goddard and saw Eric's show. Great show with great wire frames. Loved the train and the drummers.
  13. socrnet

    How Is It Going ?

    Matt, we originally used climbing rope to support the lights. After a week or so we noticed the rope stretched and the lights started to sag. I used cable for my first tree I setup in November. Tried to shortcut the process and didn't use cable clamps at both ends of each cable. Complete failure. So I used 8 11 ft. cables, looped and clamped at both ends. Just for giggles I used 8 11 ft. rope supports for a little extra help with sagging problem. So 10 ft. 3/4 inch electrical conduit sitting in a larger piece of conduit driven in the ground. Block of wood screwed to the top via a base plate. A bolt through the block sticking up 8 inches or so to loop your rope and cable to. A dozen 2 1/2 inch screws around to top of the block. Staked out my rope and cable about 32 inches from the pole. Then you spiral a hundred count set of lights nice and evenly around the tree. I made about three complete turns. Hooked the light string on one of the screws at the top. If you make your spiral evenly you have just a few inches left at the top of you tree. I tuck it behind the block at the top. I used 16 strings of lights and ended up piggybacking them off my 16 minitrees. When the run the tree spirals. ps. programming looks best if two strings with a little fade roll up the tree.
  14. socrnet

    Light Show Videos

    Yea Matt, I share your pain. In years past I've tried everything. Last year I used a very expensive camera I was able to barrow. I shot from the roof of my neighbors house. My show is about 150 foot wide and 90 foot deep. I was just able to get it all in. This year I'm trying to get some folks I met to shoot and edit the video. When I spoke to them last week they seemed excited at the prospect, but I haven't been able to contact them to get things set up.
  15. socrnet

    Light Show Videos

    Anyone get videos of their shows posted? Looks like I may not get to that this season. Between controller problems, lots of car problems and the rain I'm just not sure I can get it done. Also, I shot with a borrowed camera last year. It was great, but not available this year. I did run into some photography guys shooting the other night. They seemed to be interested in shooting the display, but we'll see what can be worked out.
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