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Shillito's Elves return to downtown Cincinnati this holiday season

Shillito's elves
Posted at 5:25 PM, Nov 15, 2022

CINCINNATI — One of Cincinnati's most popular holiday traditions returns this month.

The Shillito's Elves will be on display at The Foundry in Fountain Square starting on Black Friday, Nov. 25, the Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. (3CDC) and altafiber announced Tuesday morning.

Made famous while on display at the downtown Shillito's department store in the 1950s, the elves went into hibernation when the store closed — popping up in exhibits sporadically ever since. The elves were on display outside Findlay Market in 2021, and now they'll be at the site of another former department store: the former downtown Macy's location.

While the displays have changed over the years, 3CDC said six elves are returning for 2022: Lazzie Bear and Gift Wrap; the Mail Sorter; Little Woodshop; Pete the Painter; and Elves at Home, which includes Ralph the Piano Player and the Bunkbed Elves. Local artist Mark Trieweiler is the person who stores the elves.

"The Shillito’s Elves are synonymous with the holidays in Queen City, and we’re thrilled to be bringing back this wonderful tradition so it can be enjoyed by a new generation of Cincinnatians," said Joe Rudemiller, VP of Marketing & Communications for 3CDC. "Our friends at altafiber provide incredible support to 3CDC for our Downtown programming efforts each year. We’re grateful to them for also partnering with us on this quintessential piece of Cincinnati nostalgia and appreciative of artist Mark Trierweiler’s dedication to keeping the spirit of the Elves alive and well."

3CDC said the elves will be animated from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Black Friday, coinciding with the Light Up the Square celebration at Fountain Square. After that, the elves will be animated from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. every weekend and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and 4-9 p.m. every weekday through Jan. 3, 2023.

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