‘Cajun Christmas’ shrimp boat display returns with new swampy addition for 2020

One Louisiana town celebrates the holidays with the return of a popular “Cajun Christmas” display.

There’s nothing stopping Cajun Santa from making his third annual appearance aboard the Spirit of Morgan City shrimp boat.

Photo credit: Charles Braun Photography

This year, Morgan City native and Emmy-winning artist Lee Romaire debuts a new character to join the popular “reingators” and crew of cute elves: Mother Christmas.

Mother Christmas is a huge “living” cypress-tree-inspired character perched 20 feet above the ground.

Photo credit: Charles Braun Photography

“I wanted to do something big and over the top,” Romaire said.

The Morgan City native’s namesake Los Angeles studio creates live-action creatures, characters and animated props for the entertainment industry.

“Mother Christmas is a live Christmas tree character who represents the timber industry that helped establish this community long ago,” Romaire said. “She stands on huge presents stacked underneath her stylized limbs.”

Photo credit: Charles Braun Photography

Another new addition to the display proves Santa has been generous during this tough year. Fifty-two new, oversized presents will join the 34 already on display last year.

See also: Here’s where to festive holiday lights in 2020

Source: Romaire Studios

“We’re very grateful to Lee Romaire and Romaire Studios for what has quickly become an iconic symbol of Morgan City,” Morgan City Mayor Frank “Boo” Grizzaffi said. “People come to visit from all over to take pictures, make memories and feel the spirit of Christmas—Louisiana style—at the Spirit of Morgan City.”

Source: Charles Braun Photography

Romaire first surprised his hometown in 2018 with this special Cajun Christmas display for its annual Christmas lighting ceremony that went viral.

The festive display is truly Cajun-style and unique to the Morgan City area with symbols of the industries – shrimping, fur and lumber – that got this community started, plus more Louisiana touches.

Photo courtesy: Charles Braun Photography

In addition to Mother Christmas, the towering cypress tree, Cajun Santa wears shrimper boots and a coat trimmed with brown, faux muskrat fur while commanding his shrimp-boat sled.

The elves sport tiny shrimper boots, instead of elf shoes, and top off their unique look with white, shrimp-tail caps.

In the lead are three white alligators, a rare type that were first discovered near Morgan City. The “reingator’s” antlers are Louisiana blue crabs, and the lead gator with the red, light-up snout is named, appropriately, “Rouxdolf.”

The Cajun Christmas display was unveiled on Thanksgiving Day at the Spirit of Morgan City location near the intersection of Brashear Avenue and Federal Avenue in Morgan City. The display will remain up until early January.

SEE ALSO: Here’s why New Orleans loves Mister Bingle, a treasured holiday icon

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Shan Bailey

Shan Bailey

Shan Bailey is the digital content producer and on-air personality for FOX 8 Nola Weekend. Shan is a creative storyteller who is passionate about creating compelling content that connects with audiences.