IPL to dress Monument Circle windows with LS Ayres Christmas decorations

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If you still hanker after the old Christmas displays at LS Ayres in downtown Indianapolis, IPL has a treat for you this holiday season.

Borrowing from the popular animated displays that once graced the storefront windows of the iconic department store, IPL plans to dress its windows on Monument Circle with some of those same items that delighted families for decades, in addition to some newly created scenes right out of Norman Rockwell.

For more than 40 years Norman Rockwell's holiday paintings were showcased on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post. The Christmas spirit that Rockwell captured touched the heart and soul of all Americans young and old. Now, some of those nostalgic scenes will come to "life" in three-dimensional interpretations of the classic Rockwell holiday images the artist originally created on canvas.

Visitors to the IPL windows will see Santa reading letters filled from children all over the world in "Santa at his Desk" (1935), a moving rocking horse in "Gramps at the Reins" (1933) and a child playing his trumpet in "Boy Practicing Trumpet" (1950). They'll also see an old-fashioned stove with a flickering "flame," a rolling toy train and much more.

Also, a section of the iconic Santa Claus Express that hauled generations of kids around the tracks inside the Ayres building is on loan from the Indiana State Museum for the display. In addition, visitors will see other Ayers memorabilia, including a table, chairs and tableware from Ayers' famous Tea Room and few of Santa's elves.

The displays will be unveiled at noon on Friday, Nov. 23, joining the 50th Circle of Lights Celebration on Monument Circle.