Merry Christmas from Biloxi!


From a December 1 article in the Sun Herald by Mary Perez:

Every year the Biloxi Lighthouse is decorated for Christmas and this year’s garland goes retro, recreating decorations seen 50 years ago.   “We wanted something different,” said Bill Raymond, Biloxi’s historical administrator and manager of the Biloxi Visitors Center.   He and Sgt. Brian Margavich, the city’s volunteer lighthouse keeper, will start work today, if weather permits, to recreate the 1963 decorations.

“The Lighthouse is the symbol of Biloxi,” Raymond said. “What better place to kick off the Christmas season in Biloxi?”  A picture of the 1963 lighthouse decorations that hangs at the Visitors Center inspired Raymond to think very big this Christmas. The garland stretches from the top railing of the lighthouse to the ground and wraps twice around it.  As he looked at the picture that captures both the decorations and rare snowfall covering the ground, he thought, “Fifty years later — wouldn’t that be cool to do again?”  The snow might not be possible, but he scanned the photo and sent it to the supplier to ask if the look could be recreated. Just five days after he ordered the garland, the boxes were delivered.  The tinsel is both dazzling and practical because it won’t actually touch the lighthouse anywhere other than the top railing, which will be protected to prevent any wear.

Raymond said they aren’t sure exactly how they will string up the lights and tinsel but likely will lay it out on the ground, carry it to the top of the lighthouse and lower it 50 feet to the ground.  He doesn’t know if the 1963 display was created by the city or the chamber. But he expects it to be a surprise this year for drivers who see it on their way to work and families who come to the Visitors Center to admire the decorations and snap family Christmas pictures in front of a pair of tall trees or beside the decorated fireplaces at the Visitors Center.

The Visitors Center Christmas Open House is Dec. 21 and many of the artists whose work is sold at the gift shop will be there to add a personal touch — free gift wrap included.

Categories: Historic Preservation

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