Nativities From Around the World - Remembering the Reason for the Season

Monday, December 18, 2023

 It's easy to get so caught up in Christmas, the twinkly lights, the presents, the festivities. There's so much to love about the holidays.  Sometimes it's easy to forget the real reason for the season, but last week we visited an exhibit that was the perfect reminder - a reminder that people all around the world celebrate the true reason for the season.

Thanks to Cassie Hudson, WTEN, we learned about the exhibit at the Parks-Bentley Place in South Glens Falls.  The Historical Society of Moreau and South Glens Falls became the caretaker of a massive collection of nativities, once owned by Stanley W. Malecki, a teacher and one of the historical societies most dedicated and generous volunteers.  Stan collected nativities from all over the world - over 300 of them.  He used to share his collection each year displayed at the Parks-Bentley home.  Stan passed away in 2020 but in order to ensure that the collection would be enjoyed for years to come, Stan gave the whole collection to the historical society.  Each year about 125 of the nativities get displayed throughout the home where visitors can enjoy them, just like Stan intended.  Last weekend was the last weekend of the exhibit, but there is one more opportunity to view it this season, and that is on December 30th.  

Each year, the collection is rotated and a different group is displayed.  This year the collection, “Forging Christmas: Nativities of Substance” is celebrating the medium in which each set was crafted.  Displayed in several rooms of the home, nativities were grouped by material, some made from wood, metal, paper,  banana leaves, ebony, and more.  Notice that even the animals varied depending on where the nativity was created.  

Nuts and Bolts


Can you imagine?  So many uniquely different representations of the Holy Family.  The exhibit at  Parks-Bentley Place is located at 53 Ferry Boulevard in South Glens Falls and will be open for one more day this season on December 30 from noon to 7:00 pm.  Admission is $5.00.    

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