We'd like to thank Janet Enos for contributing the attached photos from this year's removal of the Shadi Holiday Display in El Cerrito on Thursday.
The display – a sprawling Biblical village replete with dozens of buildings, sheep, humans, camels and an angel – is a locally famous seasonal landmark. By tradition, it's taken down on Dec. 27 every year.
The display began in 1950, when the late Sundar Shadi placed a single star in his yard. It gradually grew as he added more of the handmade folk-art pieces year by year. He stopped erecting it when he became too old in 1997, and no one at that time knew whether it would ever be seen again.
In 2002, El Cerrito resident Jane Bartke, with a key assist from her husband Rich, saved the collection from being sold off and successfully organized the effort to the display resume that year.
This year, the Bartkes and other long-time volunteers, were assisted by a new crop of organizers who've agreed to step forward to take over the task of overseeing it.