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Santa Returns to Chillicothe’s Paper Mill

The new edition of Santa and his Sleigh is on display this weekend at the entrance to Yoctangee Park. The updated edition is the work of Chillicothe-based Metropolis Design Studios and Midway Sign Company. Crews from Pixelle Solutions will move the structure to its new home, stretching across South Bridge Street on the paper mill's conveyer belt, where the display's first edition was seen in 1954. Dan Ramey/Litter Media

Article presented by Horizon Connects

Pixelle Specialty Solutions is rekindling memories from Christmases past by bringing back Santa and his sleigh along the chip conveyer belt stretching over South Bridge Street.

In 1954, paper mill employees of then Mead Paper, erected a display of reindeer pulling Santa and his sleigh on the conveyer. The display gave the illusion of Santa suspended in mid-air over the previous U.S. 23 South.

Jarrod DePugh, co-owner and designer with Metropolis Design Studios and Midway Sign Company says the display was a part of Christmas in Chillicothe until 1997.

He presented the idea of bringing Santa back to the mill ownership and Pixelle representatives agreed.

Click to watch the reveal of the display

The new display was unveiled during the Chillicothe Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony and sets near the entrance to Yoctangee Park this weekend. It will be installed over South Bridge Street by a crew from Pixelle next week in time for Thanksgiving Day.

Until then, visitors to Chillicothe’s Downtown can get an up close perspective of the display and even a selfie, too.

DePugh has an extra special tie with the display. His grandfather, a carpenter for the mill in the 1970s, was given the task of constructing an updated version of the original Santa. Now 50 years later, the display has been given new life from the DePugh bloodline.

The original Santa and his sleigh design as seen in the Chillicothe Gazette December 6, 1954. Source:
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