More than 150 unusual Nativity scenes are displayed at the event held at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

Cheryl Jensen, as coordinator of her church’s annual Festival of the Nativity, has seen a lot of unique and sometimes stunning versions of Jesus, Mary and Joseph in the three years since the festival’s inception.
“We displayed one nativity from Germany that measured more than three feet long and was carved out of one piece of wood that was gorgeous,” Jensen said. “We display nativities from all across the globe.”
In 2010, approximately 150 nativity sets were on display at the festival. This year Jensen, with the help from men and women of the Armed Forces who travel extensively, hopes for even more.
The event will be held on December 2 and 3, from 6 – 9 p.m. at 4806 Bell Shoals Rd. in Valrico and is coordinated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“This festival helps serve as a reminder of the importance of the birth of Jesus Christ our Savior and that if we turn to Him we can find meaning and purpose in our own lives,” says Robert Howell. “His ministry truly changed the world and benefitted all mankind.”
In addition to the nativity displays, visitors will revel in the sounds of holiday music performed by local musicians and singers. Families can be photographed as they dress in nativity costumes and re-enact the Holy Night. A craft room will allow children to create and take home a special remembrance of the evening. Refreshments will be served.
Admission is free to the public.
“This is a wonderful way for families to come together this holiday season and celebrate the true meaning of this holiday season,” said Jensen. “We invite everyone to come and see all these beautiful nativity displays and remember Jesus Christ and His love for each of us.”
For more information about the event, visit or call Jensen at 684-8242.

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Michelle Caceres
MIchelle Caceres has been writing for the Osprey Observer for seventeen years. She enjoys writing human interest pieces about inspiring members of the community who are working to better our community. She lives in FishHawk Ranch with her husband and recently became an empty-nester. When not writing, Michelle is serving her church community, reading and enjoying Florida's weather.