Annual Living Nativity scene moves to Garibaldi

It’s the reason for the season and it’s bigger than ever for this holiday season.
In its four years of producing the Living Nativity scene at First Christian Church in Tillamook, Director Toni Browne decided to make the event much bigger by moving it to a new location in Garibaldi.
By Max Kirkendall
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“We had been doing it at First Christian Church in Tillamook and they’re still participating but we are in a great location right on highway 101 in Garibaldi,” Browne said. “North Coast Christian and God’s Lighthouse are also jointly participating, so it’s a little bit bigger of a production.”
The actors in the Living Nativity are all volunteer church members and Browne said she had a much larger crowd to choose from this year.
“There’s going to be quite a few that I’ve never worked with before and some that have done it before who will be there, so it’s a new mix,” Browne said.
The event will take place Dec. 23 and 24 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the corner of Third St. and Highway 101 in Garibaldi. Browne said in year’s past she has been tasked with choosing a Nativity painting to try to reproduce as closely as possible. However, this year she said it’s a little more freelance to make room for the grand production.
“Last year was very simple and primitive and this year will be more elaborate,” Browne said. “I’m trying to make it pretty spectacular this year with costumes and what not.”
The Living Nativity is a collaborative effort, thanks in part to Rob Trost, The Old Mill, the City of Garibaldi, Parkside Restaurant, Mark and Pam Widmer, as well as the three churches involved. According to Browne, the Living Nativity has now substituted the Christmas Eve service at the North Coast Church. However, those looking for a Christmas Eve service can attend the service at sister church First Christian in Tillamook.
Browne said her goal is to make the Living Nativity scene something different as well as provide a reminder of what is the reason for the season.
“It’s not Santa Clause, shopping and how much money you can spend,” Browne said. “It’s a reminder of what this season is really supposed to be about and everybody knows what the nativity looks like, so I want to make it into something different every year so people will say,’ I want to see what’s at this year’s version.’”

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