Kerstallendorp Schimmert or Christmas Village Schimmert

Several days ago, I saw a new sign posted as you enter town “Kerstallendorp Schimmert” .  Of course not speaking Dutch, I had no clue what it meant except it had to do with Christmas.

I went straight to the all knowing Google Translate and got a translation of:   Christmas Village.  Instantly I envision something along the lines of National Lampoons Christmas Vacation.   My small mind tries to grapple with a Dutch equivalent to no avail.   I just have this dread that the cute quaint little village is going to light up America style.

Fortunately last week on one of my daily runs, I met a lady who started a conversation with me, near where a life size Nativity was going up (featured image).  I asked her about the “Christmas Village” .  She explained that the tradition in this town is displaying nativity scenes across town.  It originated at the cathedral where the priest collected nativity scenes from around the world. He put them on display every year.  Over time the whole town started displaying nativity scenes with designated walks and routes originating at the cathedral and going out.  On the walks there are over 100 displays, life-size, miniature, inside windows and on the grounds.

Of course I am a bit relieved that there is no extreme light displays, but I am also curious to see this tradition.

Today Crystal and I walked about 1/2 the route along main street.  It was subtle and gave a pleasant sign of Christmas.  We only got to about 50 of them. I took pictures of some, but it was too bright with reflections on windows to get good shots.  Maybe if the weather stays dry I can get out and take some shots in the evening.

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About baileyaj

American living overseas in the Netherlands.

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