Minden is known as Nebraska's Christmas City for good reason. Beginning in 1915 when City Light Commissioner J.C. Haws aspired to impress the state convention of the G.A.R., lights were strung from the railroad depot to the town square. Weather problems prevented the lights' use until Christmas time, when Haws found a new home for the lights: the courthouse dome! Now the spectacular Christmas Lights on the Kearney County Courthouse in Minden, NE can be seen for miles and have been a source of pride for the community and state. "The Light of the World" is a Christmas Pageant that is another source of pride and is performed by local residents on the sides of the courthouse square every year. Every performance is free of charge and culminates in the illumination of over 12,000 bulbs that adorn the courthouse and the square itself. What a site to see and experience! The pageant is held the Saturday after Thanksgiving and the first two Sundays in December. Check the Calendar to view the pageant's performance dates.
Poetic Tribute to Minden's City Light Crew
By Mayor Ted Griess
Atop our great courthouse and over the trees
They string Christmas lights with the greatest of ease
Their movements are graceful, we citizens they please,
like daring young men on a flying trapeze.
For 100 years they've lighted the dome,
Making us proud to call Minden our home.
Shining like diamonds through the wintery night.
Millions have viewed this beautiful sight.
A tradition that sends a message so clear
To all who witness these lights of good cheer.
Thus credit should be given where credit is due;
My thank you goes out to the City Light Crew.
Detailed History of the Annual Christmas Pageant