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Gards to light up C.P. for first time in years

PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 9:32 am
by Super Fly
Gards to light up C.P. for first time in years

CROWN POINT | For years, it was a beloved way of celebrating Christmas in Crown Point.

Now it's back.

The children of Elmer and Bettie Gard are reviving their parents' tradition of decorating their home at 441 S. East St. to display the religious story of Christmas. Using life-size figurines designed and built by the Gards, who both died, Brian Gard, his siblings and friends lit the display for the first time in years at 5 p.m. Saturday.

Gloria Youngs, the Gards' daughter who lives in Mishawaka, said the tradition was difficult to keep up after 2000 because she and her siblings had mostly moved away from Crown Point. But in the past year, Youngs said Brian Gard moved back into their parents' house and her brother Jim Gard visited the city at Thanksgiving to start preparing the decorations, which include angels, the Nativity, trees, lots of lights and festive music.

It's been tricky locating all of the pieces, some of which were kept in the couple's laundry and dry cleaning stores, and getting them into good condition. Youngs said the family is using old pictures of the display to replicate their parents' work.

Youngs said the annual display was so popular that cars often waited in line to drive past. At one point, the city even imposed a temporary one-way restriction on the street during the holidays to accommodate traffic.

Family members haven't stopped hearing from residents who missed the decorations.

To mark the occasion, many Gard family members are coming to the city. Youngs said she's excited to get the tradition going again.

"It's Christmas for us," she said. "It was always Christmas for us."




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The Christmas display at the Gard home will start Saturday and continue through Jan. 1 from 5 to 10 p.m. nightly. It will be lit until 1 a.m. Christmas Eve. The house is at 441 S. East St. in Crown Point.

PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 9:39 pm
by flyby
Are the lights up this year?