Slideshow: Peoria office Christmas decorations

December 18, 2013 / by / 0 Comment

Touring your neighborhood and looking at Christmas decorations is a lot like working at Grand Canyon University’s Peoria Avenue site, with a couple of differences.

Peoria is more fun, and you don’t need to wear a coat.

This week’s visit to the site had something for everyone, regardless of Christmas taste, and Peoria’s reputation for well-crafted displays was evident everywhere: “Peanuts” characters, toy trains, a blue-and-silver wonderland and (last but not least) a tribute to the classic holiday film “A Christmas Story.”

Peppermint Patty of the "Peanuts" gang gets her 'Lopes up.

Peppermint Patty of the “Peanuts” gang gets her ‘Lopes up.

Here’s the best of what we saw, by floor (thanks to Athena Sewell for serving as our gracious guide):

Third floor

A team of qualifying specialists — Matthew Kendall, Robert Allen and Teasha Ashcraft — produced paper snowflakes with little Antelope heads inside them and packed more Christmas into a small space than anyone we saw. “Teasha’s the brains of the operation,” Allen said.

Jeff Brucker’s little desktop train and Cheryl Galligan’s fully gift-wrapped desk were impressive, and so was a garden scene with paper butterflies and flowers by Cindi Hardy.

However, the biggest attraction on 3 is “Santa’s Do-Work Shop,” a mini-village of at least two dozen cubicles done as “gingerbread houses” (with roofs) by Luke Eyrise‘s team. The work was completed last weekend, and there was even a cubicle with a “Bah Humbug” sweater draped over a chair. (Now, that’s equal opportunity for you, although it probably says something that no one was home. Tough neighborhood for a Scrooge.)

Second floor

Hands down the best work here was done by Dejan Zelenovic’s Superteam 3, which created almost two dozen characters, including the “Peanuts” gang (gotta love Peppermint Patty doing ’Lopes Up), Frosty, Rudolph, the Grinch, “The Nightmare Before Christmas” and the Abominable Snowman. Jasmine Gonzalez and Wayne Janzen pulled it together, with help from Tiffany Deal, Rausha Lewis and Tristan Godwin. “Every morning when you come in, it just makes you happy,” Lewis said.

Rhonda Wrenn’s lacy snowflakes, suspended by a rod across the width of her cubicle, represented another round of cleverness from her (she had a Kwanzaa display last year), and the Team Edkins tree also was eye-catching.

First floor

Team Amazing’s “Winter Wonderland,” in blue and silver and with huge, five-pointed stars suspended from the ceiling, was a knockout — at least until we discovered that team leader Regina Madden is a Dallas Cowboys fan, explaining the color scheme. Arizona Cardinals fan Jim Murray lodged a one-man protest with the decoration of his cubicle in red and black, the Cardinals’ colors.

Team Us, led by Michelle French and Amanda Gades, went with a “Christmas Story” theme that included French’s miniature version of the notorious leg lamp from the movie. “Some of the people on the team haven’t seen the movie,” Gades said, nodding in the direction of Gaby Ngoundjo, “and we said, ‘Just go with it.’”

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