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Setting up an Outdoor Nativity Set Made a Difference in Our Community

I am just a volunteer trying to keep folks informed as to what is happening in Pendleton.

Our nativity scene in Pendleton, SC.

Our nativity scene in Pendleton, SC.

The Best Outdoor Nativity Set That's Made in the USA

This is a wonderful outdoor nativity set for your yard, your community, or your church yard. It is a white silhouette-style image made of marine-grade plastic and never needs painting or any maintenance. It is made in the U.S. and breaks down for easy storage.

Several Pendleton residents were interested in having one in our town. We wanted to put in on a piece of property coming into town that belonged to Pendleton Presbyterian Church. It is the perfect location and would be seen by anyone driving into our small, historic town. We looked at various nativity options, and the one that I am featuring here really caught my eye.

One concern was that we wanted to be sure it was American-made, so I emailed the company, and when I received a reply telling their story, I knew that this would be the right nativity scene for our town.

We were also concerned about the storage and were delighted to find out that this set easily breaks down for storage in four boxes. Our area church members and friends came through with donations, and we are so excited about making this beautiful purchase.

This page is dedicated to all those generous donors who are making this wonderful thing happen for our town. May it remind all who view it of the real reason for the season.

Placing Greenery Around Our Manger Scene

One year, we decided to ask everyone to place greenery around the scene. We think everyone enjoyed that. The men who put it up decided to raise the Angels, and I thought they really looked great.

Should I Get a Large or Standard-Sized Nativity Set?

You can purchase one piece at a time, but make sure you are purchasing either all standard pieces or all Larger pieces.

We chose the "large" version for our community nativity set. It arrived in four days. It sure adds a lot to our little town.

This standard size is 4 ft tall at its tallest, which is from the base to the top of the star. In reading the reviews, I saw that several people were worried that it would be too small, but were very pleased when it was erected.

Buy It Piece-by-Piece

This is the Holy Family, and you can also purchase the Three Wise Men, a shepherd with sheep, two Angels, a donkey, a cow, and a camel. This is the standard size nativity—be sure to look for the size when buying accompanying pieces so that they will match in proportion. All of the individual pieces and sets come in both standard and large size.

A Description of Each PIece

A good many people purchase the Holy Family and the set of Angels to start their set, with plans to purchase an additional piece each year.

Make sure you are buying the right size animals, angels, wise men, and shepherds to go with your Holy Family.

  • Animals: The camel measures 22 inches tall. Of course, you may want to order more than one camel for your set. The standard-sized calf measures 20.5 inches and is a great addition. You might want to consider ordering more than one.
  • Angels: The standard-sized Angels measure 27.75 inches. Our angels were mounted to trees this year, which really looked nice, but one fell and will have to be replaced.
  • Shepherds and Sheep: The standard-sized shepherd stands 27.5 inches tall and has two sheep with him.
  • Wise Men: The Wise Men add a lot of dimension to the scene because of their varying heights. The two in front measure 28.5 inches, and the 3rd one is 28.75. Once again, these are the dimensions for the standard size.
Morton White of Pendleton Presbyterian Church shows boxes.

Morton White of Pendleton Presbyterian Church shows boxes.

Make Sure to Save the Packaging for Storage Purposes

Carol Smith is checking on a storage container. We decided not to store them in the boxes but rather get one large container that would hold them all with wheels. We feel like this will be a good investment and assure that the scene is well preserved from year to year. I went to the live online chat at the company website and talked with Steve, who reminded me that the boxes were specially designed for storing the scene. I explained our reasoning for wanting one container on wheels, and he said, "Just make sure it lays flat so that any heat it could be exposed to won't cause any bending.". We will definitely keep that in mind when storing!

NOTE: We realized that we were probably supposed to have opened the boxes on the sides rather than trying to pull out from the end. If we had opened it correctly, we could have preserved the styrofoam sheets that each piece was in and repacked it in them. Going back and looking at this picture, I can now see that the top was meant to come off. Live and Learn, I guess. We still like the idea of a storage container on rollers. We will let you know how that develops.

I feel sure we aren't the only ones that have made this mistake. We were trying so hard not to mess up the boxes, and I guess that is why we immediately thought that we were supposed to open them at the end. Maybe I will make a suggestion that the company create a video to include opening the boxes and repackaging for storage. Also, maybe an "Open Here" arrow on the box.

Update: Jerry Pounds took the whole scene up after Christmas, and Carol Smith cleaned it. She said it was so easy to wipe clean with a damp cloth. Meanwhile, the Reverend Morton White slid each piece right back into the boxes with no problems at all. They decided to leave the Holy Family section intact in the office area, which isn't used much. Jerry suggested that some trees be planted to form a border behind the scene for next year. We will be looking into that possibility as well as the possibility of running electricity over there.

Morton White with Star to our Nativity Scene

Morton White with Star to our Nativity Scene

We could hardly wait to open a box and see what the pieces of our Outdoor Nativity Set were like, and we were so pleased. They are really sturdy and well made. We played the video again, showing how to install the stability kits. Morton says he knows how to do it, so he will be leading the Work Session on Sunday afternoon, November 18. Members of Pendleton Presbyterian will work to install the stability kits on each section and have it ready to move the lot across the street by the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Meanwhile, we will make sure that the Pendleton Area Churches and friends know about the dedication and send out Thank You notes to our church members. I will be sending them to the donors from Pendleton United Methodist Church. Each church is in charge of its own acknowledgements. We are just overwhelmed with the generosity of the church members and friends and hope that everyone is pleased with the product.

Davie Kirkley will be checking out some Solar Lighting possibilities in case we decide to go in that direction. The other night, Carol took one of the wise men and had a friend to drive by the site while she held it. We were anxious to know how the car lights shining on it would look. She said that it was very dramatic, so we may decide not to use lights.

Update: Griff's Farm and Home Center donated two spotlights. Thank you!

We actually raised more than was needed and have donated $600 toward the Magi Fund, which provides Christmas for needy families through the work of many Pendleton Area Churches. The members of Pendleton United Methodist Church, Pendleton Presbyterian Church and First Baptist Church of Pendleton have all been so generous toward this worthwhile project.

Ready in time for the tree-lighting ceremony!

Ready in time for the tree-lighting ceremony!

After having Jerry and Morton move the pieces from one spot to another, the ladies were finally pleased. Jerry thought it would look nice to have pine branches as a backdrop, so he did that later in the afternoon, and it really added a lot. Also, Hevy Mann added the sign that reads Merry Christmas - Pendleton Area Churches. We are still bothered by the phone company box and may try to find a tree or more greenery to cover it. Also, it seems that lights will be needed after all, but we will get it all together. We really think it looks wonderful! The white silhouette outdoor nativity scene was definitely the right choice for us.

The border of the invitation is reduced coloring book pages done by some of the children during Children's Church one Sunday. We talked about the importance of the nativity scene, and I told them where it would be, etc. The older children created a model of it for us to use in deciding where to place each of the figures.

Outdoor Nativity Scene in Pendleton SC

Outdoor Nativity Scene in Pendleton SC

Pendleton United Methodist Church Children and Youth

Learning the real reason for the season!

These two streets into Pendleton get a good bit of traffic, as you can hear in the video. All of us who pass by our nativity scene are reminded to keep Christ in Christmas.

Outdoor Nativity Scene in Pendleton SC

Outdoor Nativity Scene in Pendleton SC

Are They Dust Particles or Angels?

I took about six photos last night of the Nativity. The other ones were clear of orbs but not this one. I lightened it to see better, and as you can see, they are everywhere.

My sister's response to seeing the picture: "Heavenly Host"!

I have read that there are people who believe the Digital Cameras pick up Dust Particles in the air, and that is what causes these Orbs. I choose to believe that they are Angels. A friend told me that she believed that it was energy from the joy of coming together. What do you think?


Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on February 27, 2018:

It is beautiful, Connie, and adds a lot to our little town.

Connie Rasbury on February 26, 2018:

Such good information about this nativity scene.... wonderful project for your church.

MariaMontgomery from Coastal Alabama, USA on January 06, 2014:

I really want one of these for my yard for next Christmas. Thanks for sharing about this company.

Sure Temp on January 02, 2014:

that is a LOT of christmas haha :)

OliviaQ on December 12, 2013:

this is a worderful story, I enjoy it, thanks for share..

gods_grace_notes on December 08, 2013:

Thank-you for sharing this wonderful story... I love the outdoor nativity set!

Dancing Cowgirl Design from Texas on December 08, 2013:

Yall have such a lovely display. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas.

Ruthi on December 08, 2013:

Oh my goodness! Pendleton once again has me envious that I do not live in such a wonderful community, I love how the residents come together! What a beauty of a Nativity set that will be enjoyed year after year in your town. Loved the videos and photos.

ChristyZ on December 01, 2013:

Wow, what a beautiful lens. I really enjoyed the dedication video, I'm not officially filled with holiday spirit! Amazing job!!

tonyleather on November 24, 2013:

Have to say I think this is a great lens! I just love these outdoor nativity scenes!

bigjoe2121 on January 22, 2013:

what a wonderful christmas tradition!

ismeedee on January 21, 2013:

It would be really nice to have a nativity set in our town next Christmas!

anonymous on January 16, 2013:

Our set was such a great addition to our town and has brought joy to lots of people! Can't wait until next year.

TrialError on January 16, 2013:

Great idea for a nice do-it-yourself Christmas decoration. Thanks for posting.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on January 16, 2013:

@Virginia Allain: We were fortunate to have sold a good many of them so hope they are as proud of their purchases and we are of our Outdoor Nativity Set.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on January 16, 2013:

@Joan4: Wow, thank you so much Joan. This really means a lot

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on January 16, 2013:

@kimark421: They are great and it is such a wonderful, Christian company

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on January 16, 2013:

@flinnie lm: We have been so pleased with our purchase and I think the whole town has enjoyed our Outdoor Nativity Scene.

Gloria Freeman from Alabama USA on January 13, 2013:

These are great, wish we did have one like this for our church yard. Thanks for sharing.

kimark421 on December 30, 2012:

Awesome lens. Love the Nativity sets!

Joan4 on December 30, 2012:

Indeed, this is my favorite lens of 2012! I love the story, the videos and the love that shines from this page!

Virginia Allain from Central Florida on December 27, 2012:

You've done a great job telling the story of this outdoor nativity set. I hope other towns or churches choose to have these on display.

infoprogirl on December 24, 2012:

Very nice selection of Nativity Sets for outdoors.

Deborah Carr from Orange County, California on December 22, 2012:

I have a nativity scene for under my Christmas tree, but I love the idea of a larger one for the yard!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 21, 2012:

@Tennyhawk: Thank you so much for visiting.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 15, 2012:

@primoz11: Thank you and thank you for dropping by

primoz11 on December 15, 2012:

well done

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 13, 2012:

@RetroMom: Thank you for visiting here. We are really proud of our Outdoor Nativity Set.

RetroMom on December 07, 2012:

Placing this nativity set outdoor is really great! Thanks for sharing!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@entertainmentev: They really are beautiful and the design is so simple.

entertainmentev on December 06, 2012:

These outside Nativity sets are beautiful!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@MariaMontgomery: I don't have a nativity outside my home either but have two inside. I imagine your Angel is beautiful.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@AmberLBarnes: I just love it and think it looks wonderful. This sunday the children and youth from PUMC will have a candlelight service there. Won't that be so meaningful. I hope to video it.

AmberLBarnes on December 06, 2012:

What a wonderful addition to the town! It looks wonderful!!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@AstroGremlin: Yes, it is just hard to imagine what things would be like

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@Gayle Dowell: Our Outdoor Nativity Scene is in such a prominent place that everyone driving into our town will see it and be reminded of the real meaning of Christmas - quite a statement, I would say!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@DLeighAlexander: We have 2 old small manger scenes inside, too, and they are treasures, for sure. Wow, that is so special having the one made of olive wood from Jerusalem.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@Fruitfulvine2: Yes, it is fun to see the different styles of Nativity Scenes. I love this silhouette style Nativity

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@anonymous: Thanks to generous donors such as yourselves. Thank you.

MariaMontgomery from Coastal Alabama, USA on December 06, 2012:

Such a lovely lens, and so well done. I have several nativity sets throughout our home at Christmas-time, but only an angel outdoors.

anonymous on December 06, 2012:

Nancy, the Nativity Scene sets the perfect mood when coming into Pendleton. It just makes it feel like you're home, even if you're not a Pendletonian! So to one and all: Come be a Pendletonian, if not for keeps, then for the day. You'll love our town, and our new Nativity Scene will light up your day.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on December 06, 2012:

@tamjo5: Oh good. I hope you will return and tell us about your Nativity Scene.

tamjo5 on December 06, 2012:

NOt yet, but your awesome lens is about to change that! Thank You!!!!I really appreciate your sharing all of this

Fruitfulvine2 on December 04, 2012:

No we don't. When we lived in New Orleans and St. Thomas we would drive around just to look. It was fun seeing all the different shapes and forms the nativity sets took.

DLeighAlexander on December 04, 2012:

I do not have one in my yard, but I love to see them outdoors for Christmas. It just isn't Christmas without this most important decoration displayed. I have an indoor manger scene given to my husband and I for our first married Christmas together from his grandparents. It's made of olive wood and is from Jerusalem. Great lens :) ~angel blessed

Gayle Dowell from Kansas on December 04, 2012:

I do not have a nativity scene in my yard, but I do have them all around the inside of my yard. What a great way to proclaim the real meaning of the season to those around.

AstroGremlin on December 03, 2012:

Had there been room at the inn how different things would have been.

Ajeet on December 03, 2012:

Merry Christmas to you too.

anonymous on December 03, 2012:

I am very happy for this info

ryokomayuka from USA on December 02, 2012:

In the past yes but living in an apartment not much room.

Barbara Radisavljevic from Paso Robles, CA on December 01, 2012:

You did a great job on this lens. There's nothing quite like personal experience and real photos to get the point across.

Wednesday-Elf from Savannah, Georgia on November 29, 2012:

Very lovely. What an outstanding idea for the Pendleton area churches to do. I recognize the location of the Nativity Set. Perfect.

clouda9 lm on November 28, 2012:

Love this page filled with the most beautiful outdoor nativity sets and Pendleton community spirit. Rah! Happy Sales to you and the Friends of the Park.

Kay on November 27, 2012:

I think these are terrific and love the ones that do lights around them. So pretty!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on November 26, 2012:

@evelynsaenz1: Yes, Pendleton is an amazing place, for sure. I do love my town and love this newest addition of the Outdoor Nativity Scene

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on November 26, 2012:

@sheilamarie78: We are so pleased with our Outdoor Nativity Set

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on November 26, 2012:

@favored: We will be adding the lights this week, hopefully, and I will be sure to add some more pictures showing it at night.

Evelyn Saenz from Royalton on November 25, 2012:

Pendleton has such an amazing community spirit. How nice that they got together to purchase and display this Nativity Scene.Squid Angel Blessed!

askformore lm on November 25, 2012:

Thank you for sharing these great ideas!

Sheilamarie from British Columbia on November 23, 2012:

Very nice nativity set. I really like it.

Fay Favored from USA on November 22, 2012:

I hope we get to see this all set up at your church. Keep adding to it won't you... I'll come back to look. My husband said he really likes this set up. (He's watching over my shoulder). The story is great, give God the glory.

Michey LM on November 22, 2012:

Happy Thanksgiving!"May your stuffing be tastyMay your turkey be plump,May your potatoes and gravyHave never a lump.May your yams be deliciousAnd your pies take the prize,And may your Thanksgiving dinnerStay off your thighs! "

anonymous on November 14, 2012:

We are so excited to see this coming together for our town.

Kristen from Boston on November 13, 2012:

I love the extra large outdoor Nativity set. I don't have the yard for it, but it sure looks beautiful in the picture above. Best of luck raising money for your town parks and I hope your dedication goes well on the 25th.

anonymous on November 10, 2012:

Nothing says Christmas more than a Nativity set, and it is wonderful to see them on the front lawns of homes around the neighborhood. This webpage has some wonderful outdoor nativity sets available.

kopox on November 04, 2012:

very nice decorations.. i want one for my lawn...

Peggy Hazelwood from Desert Southwest, U.S.A. on October 21, 2012:

What a great decoration for Christmas if you have a big yard.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on October 20, 2012:

@CrossCreations: Oh that's great. We can't wait to see ours up

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on October 20, 2012:

@Melissa Miotke: We were so pleased that this set was delivered in less than a week from when we ordered it.

Melissa Miotke from Arizona on October 15, 2012:

I don't have one but I am planning on buying a bunch of decorations for Christmas this year for my yard so maybe I will soon enough:)

Carolan Ross from St. Louis, MO on October 08, 2012:

My neighbors have one of these, a small outdoor nativity set that looks just beautiful at night.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on October 03, 2012:

@poutine: I love to see the Nativity Scenes in churchyards, don't you?

poutine on October 03, 2012:

I don't have one in my yard but the churches around here have them.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on October 01, 2012:

@jptanabe: Oh Me! Thank you so much for blessing this page. How fitting!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on October 01, 2012:

@ReviewsfromSandy: We are so excited about this nativity scene and hope everyone is pleased.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on October 01, 2012:

@ohcaroline: Well, I sure have been impressed with this company. They have been great to work with.

Jennifer P Tanabe from Red Hook, NY on September 29, 2012:

These are beautiful nativity sets - I've never had one in my yard, but now I'm tempted to set one up! Angel blessed

Sandy Mertens from Wisconsin on September 29, 2012:

I love these sets for Christmas.

ohcaroline on September 29, 2012:

I used to make my own Christmas yard art items. This manufacturing company is well known to me. I used to drive by it every day on the way to work.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 29, 2012:

@anonymous: I just love the idea of the churches working together and think it is wonderful that the Presbyterian Church is willing to let their property be used for such an important display.

anonymous on September 29, 2012:

The Nativity Scene will be beautful on our church property and just the perfect place for everyone to see when entering Pendleton.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@aishu19: Aren't they lovely. Such a simple design to say so much

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@blessedmomto7: Were you pleased? Have you got pictures?

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@anonymous: I know. Your church had the most perfect place for it. Just meant to be!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@anonymous: Me too! It won't be too much longer

aishu19 on September 28, 2012:

Love these outdoor nativity sets.

blessedmomto7 on September 28, 2012:

I have the same version, only smaller. Lovely lens!

anonymous on September 28, 2012:

I'm really excited about this project and can't wait to see it on our church property.

anonymous on September 28, 2012:

Beautiful. I can't wait to see it here in Pendleton.

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@SusanDeppner: I know. I do love the story of this business and they have been wonderful to work with.

Susan Deppner from Arkansas USA on September 28, 2012:

What a great story about the company who made the set, and another great story from your wonderful community and its volunteers! Love this nativity set! Congratulations to you, too, OhMe, on your 200th lens!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@LisaDH: Yes, they really do seem to care. In fact, I have had several email correspondence with Andrew and he is always so nice,

DecoratingEvents on September 28, 2012:

Lovely outdoor nativity sets!

LisaDH on September 28, 2012:

I love the outdoor nativity sets on this page, and I'm very impressed with what you've written about the company. First, they actually took the time to write back to you. But more importantly, it sounds like they're a company that actually cares as much about people as profits. That alone would be a good reason to buy from them!

Nancy Tate Hellams (author) from Pendleton, SC on September 28, 2012:

@Michey LM: Well said, Michey!

Cynthia Sylvestermouse from United States on September 28, 2012:

Really beautiful! I always love seeing the outside Nativity sets in yards each Christmas.

TapIn2U on September 28, 2012:

Christmas is near. Must have another Nativity Set this year because mine is getting old. Sundae ;-)

Michey LM on September 28, 2012:

Just beautiful Nativity Sets. And Just in time to remind us that we are a nation of Christians, even though we respect other religions.... but we don't replace Christianity with them. Blessings!

anonymous on September 28, 2012:

Beautiful nativity sets!