What an interesting summer with the war of the Christmas shows, each on the same weekend of July in Conroe, Texas and Gatlinburg, Tennessee. This elf made it to both and in some ways they were similar. Hot. I mean as in outside temperature. Both shows had a pretty good vendor hall and lots of Christmas fanatics but that’s where the similarities ended. The Texas show seemed aimed at the hardcore, techie kind of decorator. Very impressive classes with several geared for the Halloween haunter. I knew I was in trouble when this handsome elf was mistaken for an ugly zombie with big ears. Stupid humans. My only complaint was what to do when I stepped away from the building. No food or places to sleep unless I hopped in the sleigh. Did I mention it was hot? The Tennessee show seemed tailored for the general decorator with a family. Most of the classes were aimed for normal people though I could tell the new show promoters were still trying to understand the passion of the attendees and what classes seemed to work best. When I stepped foot outside the convention center this little elf was bombarded by about a gazillion tourist shops, restaurants and hotels. The moonshine still with free samples directly across the street became my favorite hangout. Which Christmas show was better? Not going there. As for this overheated elf, I’ve never been to a bad Christmas show but I’ll admit the free Tennessee moonshine has a certain endearing quality that is making me look forward to the next visit.
Appears Light-O-Rama is releasing some items just in time for Christmas. Got a sneak peek at several new products. The new eight channel light controller looks like their 16 channel commercial version but in a smaller box. I swear you could run over it with a bus and you’d worry if the bus was hurt, not the controller. Especially liked that it could run in a standalone mode if you didn’t want to dedicate a computer. Cosmic color ribbons, pixels and bulbs are about to be joined by the cosmic color array. Think building blocks for your own outdoor RGB LED sign board. Just what you need to really irritate those pesky neighbors. Then there’s the next generation Easy Light Linker wireless data radios with faster speed and longer range. There are even rumors LOR is going to be a one stop shop and also carry wire, lights, wireframes, strobes and even shingle clips. Be still my beating heart.
I’m seeing all sorts of over-sized, outdoor rated Christmas ornaments destined for the store shelves this year. The one I glimpsed glistened like hand blown glass until I saw it bounce off the floor. Is there anything you can’t do with plastic now-a-days? Keep reading.
One of the young techno-elves brought Santa a fancy 3-D printer to be used in the toy shop. Now instead of making anything by little elven hands this gizmo could simply print plastic trucks, dolls and dinosaurs. I don’t think so. The hi-tech wonder went missing and not even Santa seemed to notice. Is that a new birdhouse hanging just outside the shop window? You don’t mess with the livelihood of elves.
We’re entering Christmas crunch time at the shop. Drop me a note if you know of any good rumors out there. I only share the really juicy ones.
This article was included in the September 2013 issue of PlanetChristmas Magazine.
By Master Elf N. B. Scuttlebutt