You can have your own special Christmas, complete with tiny people, houses, trains and buildings. No, this is not a Christmas in Lilliput! This is about a concept called Christmas Village, or Putz as it is alternatively referred to. Christmas village is a miniature village that is used for decoration during Christmas. The tradition dates back to ancient times when Pennsylvania Dutch colonial homes put up elaborate nativity scenes or village scenes under a Christmas tree or the fireplace mantel or other prominent places in the house. The tradition then grew to such big scales that now the whole community gathers together to decorate houses, trees, driveways in the neighborhood, giving way to the creation of Christmas village and markets. There are real life Christmas villages as well, which include a lot of shopping and sight-seeing options for families. Read on to find out more about the types of Christmas villages.
Real Life Christmas Village
Visiting a Christmas village has now become a tradition that many families love to follow every year during Christmas. The village is often created with life-size village scenes complete with buildings, houses, stables, driveways etc. Families come from far off places to see the beautifully decorated villages. These villages can be interesting drive-through tours, walking tours or even interactive experiences, depending on the amount of time and energy put into creating them. Some of the famous Christmas villages to be visited are Koziar's Christmas Village(Pennsylvania), Irvine Park Christmas Village (Wisconsin), Overly's Country Christmas (Pennsylvania), Nashville Christmas Village (Tennessee) and Old World Canterbury Village(Michigan).
Miniature Christmas Village
For those families which are unable to go and visit a Christmas village, there is the fun activity of creating your own miniature Christmas village at your home. Choose an area in your home where you would like to create the village scene. Select flat and large surfaces like tables, mantels, bookcase tops or the floor under the Christmas tree. You can visit a toy store to purchase the whole set with toys, trains, buildings and houses. You can add sand, rocks and hay to make it look authentic. If you can, connect the Christmas lights with the houses to make them look like house lights. You can try out many themes like country, kids, pets and vintage village themes so that the village does not look haywire. You can create various scenes like nativity, Santa's workshop, town scene etc.
Be extra careful with the villages if you have small children who might ruin the display. If you are afraid that the small parts may be hazardous to a child then it is best to use the mantel for the display. Once you are done, use the original packing material to store them. For many families, these Christmas village accessories become collector's items and they just add to the figurines or toys collection. These also make great gifts for someone who likes to collect them or who indulges in creating villages.