William M. Koziar, the creator of Christmas Village, began decorating his home and property in 1948 for the pleasure that he and his wife, Grace, and their four children derived from the unusual display. People appreciated and applauded the beauty of the Koziar’s home and began to refer to it as the “The Christmas House.”
Mr. Koziar added new and unique items and lighted displays to the original layout each year. He began decorating the lake, walkways, trees, fences, and buildings, as well as continually adding to the barn and house.
By popular demand, visitors were granted access to the premises for a closer look. Thus, “The Christmas House” became known as “Koziar’s Christmas Village.” The word spread and people came from near and far to see the breathtaking lights.
Today Koziar’s Christmas Village has grown to a regional and national phenomena with third and fourth generation’s of families making the magical trek to view the stunning lights.
Below: The Greth Farm in the late-1890’s. Now the site of Koziar’s “Christmas Village.”
Christmas Village features the elaborately illuminated home and barn of the Koziar family, as well as numerous smaller buildings. Upon entrance, visitors are greeted by costumed characters Rudolph, Frosty, and the Village’s own Buddy the Bear. A marked pathway leads visitors among the illuminated buildings and other displays. Children may visit Santa Claus at his headquarters on Santa Claus Lane. There are several large dioramas depicting scenes such as Christmas Beneath the Sea, Christmas in the Jungle, Santa’s Post Office, and Christmas in Other Lands. There are a number of displays featuring cut-out representations of characters from popular comic strips, animated films and fairy tales, as well as manger scenes, presentations of the biblical story of the Nativity, and tellings of seasonal stories such as A Christmas Carol and The Nutcracker. The Village also includes a recreation of the Valley Forge encampment and a G gauge outdoor train layout that encompasses most of the barnyard. The “Kissing Bridge” has been the site of several marriage proposals, engagements and weddings. In addition, there are several indoor features, including an extensive H0 scale model train layout and sales area, as well as shops selling souvenirs, Christmas decorations, refreshments, and other seasonal items.
Perhaps the most dramatic feature of the Village is the first glimpse one sees of the display. Most visitors approach the property from the east, via Christmas Village Road. Being farm country the surrounding area is sparsely inhabited and, after dark, sparsely lit. The terrain blocks the view of the Village until the road crests a hill just a few hundred feet to the east of the display, at which point the entire Village is suddenly visible, reflected in the lake.