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December 5, 2006 > Christmas nativity home tour

Christmas nativity home tour

by Linda Stone

When you think of the traditional Christmas nativity you probably envision Joseph and Mary with baby Jesus in a manger surrounded by the Three Kings bearing gifts. But if you are looking for nativity sets with a twist, be sure to stop by Ed Frakes' 106-year-old Victorian home in Niles where you will see over 200 nativity scenes from all over the world including humorous ones depicting cats, teddy bears, and other animal-themed sets.

Ed is Niles' resident artist, well known for the treasures he sculpts out of junk. "I started collecting at garage sales and put together funny scenes," says Ed. Once people knew he had an affinity for making nativity sets, they started bringing him all kinds of items for his projects. "It just runs the gamut," he said proudly.

Visitors can also check out the sculptures of angels in the front yard and saints in the back garden, all of whom have a quaint background story created by Ed's fertile imagination.

For the last five years, Ed has opened his home for visitors to help collect donations for the local St. Vincent de Paul charities.

After visiting Ed's house you may want to continue on to the Niles Congregation Church where they will display nativity scenes brought in by local residents.

Christmas Nativity Home Tour
Saturday, Dec. 9 and Sunday, Dec. 10
11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
37445 Niles Boulevard, Fremont
(510) 794-1368

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