Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Nutter Puts "Christmas" Back In Village After Controversy

Breaking News from City Hall:

Nutter Puts "Christmas" Back In Village After Controversy

Crews had removed the word "Christmas" from the sign at Dilworth Plaza. (Vance Lehmkuhl / Staff)
Crews had removed the word "Christmas" from the sign at Dilworth Plaza. (Vance Lehmkuhl / Staff)

Breaking News from City Hall: 

Christmas is back.

Mayor Nutter, after sustaining two days of controversy, wants "Christmas" back up on the signs at the entrance to the German Christmas Village at City Hall.  Nutter told PhillyClout he spoke with the village organizer and the sign should be back up by tomorrow. 

Nutter said the decision came after "personal reflection" on the matter.

More coverage
 
Byko: The (Nothing) Village catered to haters
 
Rubin: Philly puts 'Christmas' back in the village
 
Smerconish: 'Village' idiots in Philadelphia
 
Editorial: It's 'Christmas'
 
Editorial: Sign language
 
Heard in City Hall: Nutter aide, Christmas, gets to keep his name
 
Smerconish: 'Village' idiots

"We are an international, multi-ethnic, multi-faith city," Nutter said. "I took some time to step back from all of this to think about it in a larger context."

Nutter, who said he had nothing to do with the orignal conversations with the organizer that lead to the letters being removed, downplayed how much impact the national news coverage had on the decision. Nutter said that he felt the village was not necessarily a religious site.

"The Christmas Village is not a religious service. It's an outdoor fair. It's a very commercial enterprise," Nutter said.

The tempest in a holiday teapot kicked off Monday when workers were spotted taking the word Christmas off the archways into the traditional German Christmas Village outside City Hall in Dilworth Plaza. The organizer took down the word after Managing Director Richard Negrin told him the city had received complaints.

In a statement yesterday, Thomas Bauer of the German American Marketing, Inc., said the move was in "response to what the Managing Director of the City of Philadelphia asked for."

Negrin said that he never specifically asked for the word to be removed, but talked with Bauer about the complaints.

"He's a great guy who saw a problem, who was trying to help me," Negrin said.

 

 

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
 Follow Chris on Twitter

Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
 Follow Jenny on Twitter.

Sean Collins Walsh is from Bucks County and went to Northwestern University. He joined the Daily News copy desk in 2012 and now covers the Nutter administration. Before that, he interned at papers including The New York Times, The Dallas Morning News and The Seattle Times. E-mail tips to walshSE@phillynews.com
 Follow Sean on Twitter

PhillyClout Team
Also on Philly.com
Stay Connected