Sunday, December 19, 2021

British Newsreel Highlights Boston's Enchanted Village

A few days ago I happened to ask my brother if he remembers visiting the Enchanted Village holiday display at Jordan Marsh's department store in Boston when we were kids. We lived about 20 miles west of Boston during the 1960s and '70s, and I have vivid memories of standing in line for what seemed like hours to see the Enchanted Village and meet Santa. Unfortunately, my brother, who's a few years younger than me, has no memories of this holiday tradition. But this morning I woke up in California to an email from him in Maine with a link to a British newsreel story about the Enchanted Village:

The Enchanted Village was created in a small German town and purchased by Jordan Marsh shortly after World War II. It took up an entire floor of Jordan Marsh's flagship store in Boston and was wildly popular for many years. Of course, good things rarely last forever, and this attraction eventually came to be seen as too old-fashioned for the times, so it was put into storage in 1972. 

Following Macy's acquisition of Jordan Marsh in 1992, the Enchanted Village was sold to the City of Boston and  displayed for several years in City Hall Plaza and the Hynes Convention Center. Unable to maintain the display, the City put it up for auction in 2009, when it was purchased by Jordan's Furniture, a regional chain whose tagline used to be "Not to be confused with Jordan Marsh."  The display is now set up for all to see each holiday season in Jordan's store in Avon, Massachusetts. Admission is free, and guests can purchase Jordan Marsh's old-fashioned blueberry muffins while they wait.

My brother and his family are thinking of visiting Jordan's later this month. Good to see that some holiday traditions continue. 

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