Over 2,000 years ago the Light of the World was born. Around 130 children are set to let their light shine for Jesus when they transport people back to Bethlehem and the time of His birth.
"Christmas ALIVE: A Walk Through Christmas Experience" is being held for a third time at First Presbyterian Church on Friday and Saturday from 5-8 p.m. The free walk-through event will only take 15 minutes to experience what actually happened during the birth of the Savior.
"The lights, sounds and even the smells take you back to that time," said Kimberly Grantham of the presentation done by KIDS' Quest.
Grantham, directing the event along with husband Brett, came up the idea of sharing the story through children as a new way for the church to celebrate Christmas.
"This makes our church stronger," she said. "I love the fact our church family is all working for the one purpose of sharing the true meaning of Christmas."
The six-scene experience begins with an angel appearing to Mary, the mother of Jesus. A scene where an angel appears to Joseph telling him to not be afraid to take Mary as his wife is also part of the walk-through experience.
The story continues with Jesus' birth in a stable followed by angels appearing to shepherds keeping watch over their flock. A scene of King Herod sending out wise men along with the wise men bowing to a young Jesus is also part of the live nativity. Shepherd and angel scenes are also part of the event.
Guides will be dressed in biblical costumes, according to the co-director. They will lead individuals through the scenes which contain live animals such as camels, donkeys, cows and sheep.
One thing which helps set the event apart is the use of a real baby in the role of Jesus.
Individuals who attend need to park at the Sportsplex. The church will have buses to transport 20-25 people at a time back to the church. Once at the church, groups will be greeted in the fellowship hall and then a guide will lead them through the scenes.
Guests will receive hot chocolate as they wait for their tour to begin.
Following the tour, chili and desserts will be served at the Youth House with all donations received benefiting the Lighthouse Toy Store.
"The children are excited to be doing this," said Grantham. "Our hope is all those who come through receive a blessing in those 15 minutes it takes."