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virtual advent 2019: macy’s windows, utah style

Last Friday, sprite wrote a post about the wonderful windows at Macy’s flagship store in New York City. They are truly awesome.

But if you grew up in Salt Lake City, the store now known as Macy’s was once the Zion’s Cooperative Mercantile Institution, or ZCMI. Founded in 1868, it predates Macy’s founding by 61 years making it the oldest department store in the United States until its eventual sale to the May company in December 1999.

A juggling bear

One thing ZCMI was known for was its holiday window display on Main Street in downtown Salt Lake City. Dating back to the 1970s, what made these windows unique is that all the decorations were made using candy. ZCMI’s candy counter was renowned, and the store liked to challenge its display designers and candy mongers to team up and create masterpieces.

The king of the candy decorations!

Luckily this tradition was revived by Macy’s in 2012, making it possibly the only Macy’s location in the country to not adhere to the same theme as the NYC flagship store. As I was in SLC this past week, I had a chance to see this year’s iteration of their windows. This year’s theme has animals celebrating the holidays, with the store encouraging viewers to visit the local zoo and aviary to see the real animals featured in the display.

Here are a few of my favorites, though all of them are true works of art.

A skating penguin
A celebratory giraffe

I encourage my intrepid readers to view the entire gallery of images from these windows, as the detail in the displays is spectacular: so much candy made into truly stunning holiday decorations.

Octopus and clown fish get in the spirit

Are there any unique window displays in your town? Share them in the comments!

This post is part of sprite’s Virtual Advent 2019.

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