Sidney church highlights season with exhibit

For the last seven years the Sidney Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has been celebrating Christmas with nativity displays

For the fourth year in row

For the last seven years the Sidney Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has been celebrating the Christmas season with a large exhibit of nativity displays and this year will be no exception.

This year’s nativity exhibit is set to open Dec. 1 and organizers hope to see even more people out this year than last.

“We had 800 people through the exhibit last year and we’re hoping for even more this year,” said Nancy Watson, one of the exhibit’s organizers.

“We’re finding more and more people are including attending the exhibit in their annual Christmas traditions so that’s great,” she added.

The one-of-a-kind exhibit features over 500 nativities (or crèches) from all over the world including Ethiopia, China, Japan and Israel. The scenes are created from all sorts of materials including wood, cloth, ceramic, glass and more.

“The nativities are all from personal collections and from members of our congregation,” explained Watson. “It’s a really neat collection to see displayed.”

The exhibit is set up over the month of November solely by volunteers and also includes a wall-size mural depicting the nativity of Jesus Christ painted by artist Dianne Gavilan.

The on-loan nativities are all given back to their respective owners before Christmas.

During the exhibit, the church will be providing children’s craft activities to keep little hands busy.

This year the church will also be entering a float into the Sidney Sparkles Santa Parade which takes place Nov. 30 to help let the community know about the exhibit.

“The float, of course, will have a nativity display depicted on it,” said Watson.

“We hope people see it and come and check out the exhibit, it really is unique and special,” she said.

The exhibit opens at the church (2210 Eastleigh Way in Sidney) on Sunday, Dec. 1 and runs from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. until Dec. 8.

Visit for more information. Admission is free.