A unique collection of 2,539 nativity scenes is on display right now at the Hills Bank in Washington Iowa.


In the Christian tradition, a nativity scene is a special exhibition, particularly during the Christmas season, of art objects representing the birth of Jesus.

The thousands of nativity scenes are all owned by Michael Zahs, who started his collection in the 1950s. It took two weeks to set up all of the displays for viewing, The displays come from more than 100 different countries, the majority of them handcrafted.

I like to have people come and look at the details. You can look at the exhibit for the scripture part of it, you can look at it for the materials, the artwork. Much of these are handmade, and some of them are very historical, Zahs said.

Zahs believes he holds a world record and is currently working on submitting his collection to Guinness for certification in the Book of World Records.

The display continues until the end of January 2023.

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