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Issue Date: December 2013

Merry Makings: Tree Line

What started out as a short story has grown into a pop culture sensation.
  1966   Author Jean Shepherd’s In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash is published in October and includes the stories upon which the film A Christmas Story is later based.
  1983   Production of A Christmas Story starts in January and wraps in March. The film debuts in U.S. theaters just prior to Thanksgiving and grosses more than $2 million on its opening weekend. By comparison, The Return of the Jedi, the year’s top-grossing film raked in more than $23 million.
  1988   TNT airs its first 24-hour marathon of the holiday favorite starting at 7 p.m. on Christmas Eve.
  1992   Higbee’s, where the infamous Santa Claus scene was filmed, is replaced by Dillard’s following its sale to the national department store chain.
  1999   Jean Shepherd, author and narrator of A Christmas Story, dies in October in Sanibel Island, Fla.
  2005   The West 11th Street house that served as Ralphie’s fictional home is sold for $150,000.
  2006   Actor Darren McGavin, who played Ralphie’s dad, dies in February at age 83 in LA.
  2009   A Christmas Story House and Museum opens for public tours in November after being restored to its original 1983 condition.
  2011   A Christmas Story, the Musical appears for the first time live onstage in Kansas City, Mo.
  2012   A Christmas Story 2 is released on DVD, while the musical debuts on Broadway in November.
  2013   A Christmas Story House and Museum hosts “Christmas in July,” along with other events, to mark the 30th anniversary of the film’s debut.

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