Live nativity returns to Niles Sunday

Published 9:26 am Thursday, December 17, 2015

Leader file photo Real Life Church's live nativity event returns this weekend to Niles at the Niles-Buchanan YMCA.

Leader file photo
Real Life Church’s live nativity event returns this weekend to Niles at the Niles-Buchanan YMCA.

With shopping, work and coordinating time to spend with family to think about, it can be easy to lose sight of the true meaning of the Christmas season.

That is why Real Life Church of Niles has been offering a live nativity scene for the past several years.

“This time of year has gotten so crazy and busy that we need something like this that can allow us to stop and relax,” said Real Life Church Pastor Jared Eckerly. “We are creatures of sight, so when we see it, it helps us remember what the season is all about.”

This year’s live nativity scene will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 20 in the parking lot of the Niles-Buchanan YMCA, which is located at 905 N. Front St., in Niles.

The free event will feature live animals and actors dressed as Roman soldiers, wise men, shepherds, Joseph and Mary.

Eckerly said there would be camels, goats, sheep and alpacas.

“Kids and adults can interact with the animals,” he said.

Organizers will once again line Front Street with luminaries to show people the way to the annual event, which has seen a steady growth in attendance each year.

“Last year was our biggest year,” Eckerly said. “Just over 1,000 people came through.”

There will be hot chocolate and fire pits where people can warm up and visit with others.

Real Life Church meets at 9 a.m. every Sunday at the YMCA.