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Community Nativity Display returns to Fort Macleod church for second year

 About 90 nativity displays were displayed last year during the Community Nativity Display at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

About 90 nativity displays were displayed last year during the Community Nativity Display at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The nativity display event returns on Thursday and Friday.

The Community Nativity Display returns on Thursday and Friday.

Organizers of a community nativity display last year in Fort Macleod hope to build on its success this year.
Community members loaned close to 90 nativity displays, or creches, for exhibition last year at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“We anticipate the number of displays will be a little bit more this year,” Bishop David Orr said.
The second annual Community Nativity Display runs from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 8 and Friday, Dec. 9 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at 643 20th St.
Last year organizers put out a call to the community to loan their creches for display, and the response was positive.
“We were thrilled with the response from the community members wanting to display their nativity scenes,” Orr said. “I was blown away by the variety.”
The creches were of great variety — from store-bought to homemade and from Canada and abroad.
The event attracted good crowds on both nights as people admired the creches.
“Our attendance was decent on the Thursday night but on the Friday night it was busy,” Orr said. “The gym was basically full the whole time. It was impressive.”
“Lots of people from the community came out.”
Bringing the community together is one of the goals of the event, which is organized to be an informal gathering with people coming and going throughout the evening.
There was interest in a nativity film that was shown last year, and it will return again this year in a larger room to accommodate more viewers.
Also popular last year was the children’s corner where young people could work on crafts.
“We’re going to grow that a little this year,” Orr said.
New this year is a musical component at 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. both nights.
“People can just stop where they are and listen to the performance, and then carry on,” Orr said.
Another new addition is a photo booth, where people can dress in costume and have their photo taken in a nativity scene.
“We’ve made a stable, a backdrop, and we’ll have costumes there so people can dress up and snap a picture,” Orr explained. “I think that will be interesting.”
Fresh cut Christmas trees will help decorate the room where the creches are displayed.
The trees will be donated to the Community Christmas Dinner on Saturday, Dec. 10 at the community hall, and will then be given to someone to take home and use for the season.
People are invited to set up their own nativity displays at the church from 6-9 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 7 and 1-4 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 8.
The church will have people on hand during viewing hours whose job it is to supervise and protect the creches.
To further add to the protection of the displays, children under the age of 12 must be accompanied and supervised closely by someone responsible.
People are encouraged to write out the story behind their creche to share with the public if they choose.
For information phone David Orr at 403-553-3983.
“We’re thrilled when people from the community display their nativity,” Orr said.

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