Henry’s Christmas Yard has over 140 inflatables. With Thanksgiving right around the corner it was time for them to put up their final inflatable; the Big Santa.
Owner Scott Hildebrand held a raising ceremony for the 32.9 foot tall inflatable that has been a staple of the yard for seven years.
“Once I started getting up to 140 To 150 inflatables it was one of those moments where you go big or go home and since I was already home, I went big.”
In total it took seven people to raise the inflatable which is actually taller than Hildebrand’s house.
“We have four people that are holding the guidelines, one person that was putting the sand bags in the feet and then we had to do a couple repair jobs, but we finally got him up and going.”
Six 40lb bags of sand were put in each foot to keep Santa from blowing over. It took an hour to get the Big Santa up, but the raising proved to be a little difficult.
Hildebrand has gotten a lot of mileage out of the iconic inflatable, but each year there are always repairs to do which create challenges in getting it up.
“This year we’ve had a couple rips where the material has just worn out and so we improvise. We use a lot of staplers, a lot of tape, and a lot of sewing.”
Because of that this will be the last year for the Big Santa, but Hildebrand is planning to find a replacement and possibly a bigger one for next year.
You can visit Henry’s Christmas Yard to see all of the inflatables at 1504 26th Avenue in Moline.