“Unto Us A Son is Given,” the 12th annual exhibit featuring more than 600 lovingly loaned nativity scenes, thousands of lights and sacred Christmas music, will open on November 29th at the Historic Kirtland Visitors’ Center, 7800 Kirtland Chardon Road, Kirtland, OH. The exhibit has been recognized by the American Bus Association as one of the “Top 100 Events in North America.”
In addition to the “family treasure” type nativities, the exhibit will feature an 8-foot long sculpture of the Holy Family by world-reknown sculptor and artist Norbert Kohen of South Euclid, and a Croation nativity originally created by a refugee in an Austrian camp at the end of World War II.
Among hundreds of nativities loaned by area residents are representations from more than 30 countries – depicting how cultures around the globe celebrate Christmas. A miniature nativity exhibit features examples of primitive art and incredibly detailed paintings and carvings. There is also an exhibit of antique foreign and hand-made Christmas cards and an international Nativity stamp collection.
The collection occupies the entire Visitor’s Center of the restored Western Reserve era village, and the one-room school house next door.
Of special interest to families and young children is The Children’s Room – where the youngest visitors can enjoy child-friendly nativities, dress up in costume and join a child-sized nativity scene for a photo and an “I Spy” seek and find activity.
Presented annually by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Kirtland, Ohio Stake (similar to a Diocese) and Historic Kirtland, a restored 19th century village of historic significance which commemorates the site where members of the church gathered shortly after its founding. Between 1831 and 1838, Joseph Smith and early members established the church’s headquarters in Kirtland, built the church’s first temple and laid the foundation of strength for the future. Guided tours of the village are also available to visitors free of charge…including a store, an inn and a residence, all decorated for the Christmas holiday in period style.
Other historic sites in the area significant in church history include the Kirtland Temple (owned and operated by the Community of Christ), the temple quarry, the Kirtland Temple cemetery, the Sidney Rigdon home, the Isaac Morely home, the Hiram Smith home, the John Johnson home in Hiram, Ohio and Fairport Harbor.
Throughout the duration of the exhibit, there will be several live performances. More details to come.
The nativity exhibit is presented annually by volunteers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints of the Kirtland, Ohio Stake. The LDS Church has more than 14 million members worldwide in 167 different countries. To learn more about its members, their beliefs, and their efforts to live Christ-centered lives, please visit Mormon.org.