I hardly can believe the holiday season is here. Producing the November/December issue always gets us in the spirit, though we stop short of playing Christmas carols in October as we are working on it. This year, it was the Reitz Home Museum that really put us in the mood. For the cover, Creative Director Heather Gray and photographer Jerry Butts worked with Matt Rowe, executive director of the Reitz Home Museum, and volunteer decorator Doug Patberg to festoon the home’s grand entry early enough for our photo session. Victorian Christmas, the Reitz Home’s annual holiday tour, has guests standing in line to see the gilded family home of one of the city’s most recognized philanthropists decked for the season (see story on page 162). The home is spectacular; I enjoy visits throughout the year. If you’ve never visited the Reitz Home Museum, let this be the year you do!
Proving they indeed are in the holiday spirit, several Tucker Publishing Group staff members (and Todd) share their most memorable holiday traditions and memories on this page. One of my earliest childhood Christmas memories is of visiting my Granny in Evansville when my family still was living in Iowa (before returning here to my father’s hometown). The image I most recall is sitting on the sofa of her Englewood Avenue home with my sister Miekka and our six cousins, all girls — eight little girls ranging in age from 4 to 10 (my youngest sister wasn’t born yet) — holding the new dolls Granny and our step-grandfather (Leonard) had bought for us.
This also is the time of year when we process thousands of subscription renewals, orders, and gifts. It occurred to me to share with you that we know who you are. At TPG, we are very hands on. My husband or I open our mail; we see the subscription renewals and orders come in, and work with staff members to process them. We don’t employ a receptionist at our office and we all answer the phone, so if you call our office with a question about your subscription, you perhaps will speak to Managing Editor Emily Patton or Art Director Hannah Jay — both are quick to look up from their computer screens to help a caller. Indeed we give your subscriptions a number, but, dear readers, you are far from a number to us. We know who you are, and, as always, I look forward to hearing from you.
May your holiday season be the brightest!
Kristen K. Tucker
Publisher & Editor
What’s Your Favorite
“Because the anticipation for Christmas Day was too much for us children, my parents would always let us choose one present to open on Christmas Eve. We would go through shaking and feeling every present the night before to make sure we made the right choice on which present to open early. The best year was when I saw a guitar-shaped gift addressed to me from Santa.”
Emily Patton, Managing Editor
“On Christmas Eve night, after checking to see if Santa had arrived (Santa never seemed to visit before 8 p.m. when I was a child), my family would drive around my hometown of Tell City, Indiana, to see all the Christmas lights decorating the homes. My favorite home was the Groves’ on 19th Street. Their entire yard is filled with lighted holiday scenes every year.”
Trista Lutgring, Staff Writer
“I love going out to Goebel Farms to get a real Christmas tree. We did this as a family growing up and now I’m the only one in my family that carries on the tradition. I have a lot of ornaments, so the tree needs to have plenty of room for hanging. The smell of the tree is one of the best parts.”
Jessica Hoffman, Account Executive
“My cousin Lee and I are one month apart in age. Although we live several hours apart, we have spent almost every Christmas together. We’re more like brothers than cousins and always have told each other what we knew the other was getting for Christmas. Then of course we acted surprised. We each have two sons who also are the best of friends. Here I am getting the present lowdown from my cousin in this photo circa 1963.”
Todd Tucker, President, Tucker Publishing Group