Midway family opens home for visitors to see nativity collection
Dec 28, 2023, 5:45 PM | Updated: 7:58 pm
MIDWAY — For most people, putting away Christmas decorations takes little time to do. But for Holly Zenger, she’s just not ready yet.
“I love this. But I love all of them,” Zenger said, looking at her nativity scenes. In her Midway home, there are six rooms full of nativity scenes.
“My husband thinks I have about a 1,000. I think I have about 2,000,” she said.
However, every single one of them is a special memory from a country she and her husband, Jack Zenger, have visited. That’s why she doesn’t like it when it’s time to put them away until next year.
“Every year. Every time I open one of them in its box, I am like, ‘Oh, I love this,’” Holly Zenger said. She got into nativity sets when she lived in California. She and her friends did one for the neighborhood.
“We started putting it together and it just mushroomed and so this is my 36th year of doing nativity displays,” she said.
She calls them displays because every year, she opens her home to people to see the collection.
“It makes a lot of people happy,” Holly Zenger said. “We have people come that are just shedding tears as they leave that they are so touched. Other people say this is our tradition.”
It is a tradition she must keep going.
“I feel a responsibility. Maybe they should find a new tradition,” she said.
Her husband laughed as well when she said that.
“I know. I am an enabler,” Jack Zenger said. “There is a limited amount of space, but we keep buying them.”
They joke because they both know there is a fine line between passion and obsession. However, the displays add to the magic of the Christmas season they truly love and want to share with others.
“We have never had anything stolen. Never had anything broken. We’ve never had anybody be disrespectful,” he said. “People just really enjoy coming here and seeing them.”
It’s also why, before the big Christmas clean-up begins, they are opening their home for visitors one more time this season.
They are located at 8 Altamont Drive in Midway, and if anyone wants to come by on Friday or Saturday between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., just knock on their front door, and they’ll show you around. It’s one way to keep the holiday season going and maybe help families create a new tradition.
“It is Christmas,” said Holly Zenger. “I will be very sad to take these down and put all these wonderful things back in boxes.”