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At the Manger shows 'A Labor of Love'

The University of Dayton’s At the Manger: World Nativity Traditions exhibit will highlight “A Labor of Love” with scenes selected by the volunteers who care for the collection.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. It is:

  • Closed Dec. 24 to Jan. 1, and Jan. 4-5. 
  • Runs through Jan. 12, 2020 in Roesch Library. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays, and 1 to 4 p.m. weekends. See a map to the library at
  • Free parking passes are required weekdays. Drive through the main campus entrance on Stewart Street just east of Brown Street and follow the signs to visitor parking. Stop at the visitor center, and an attendant will issue a parking pass.

“Every year, our faithful volunteers spend about 6,000 hours preparing and executing the At the Manger exhibit,” said Sarah Cahalan, Marian Library director. “So this year, we asked them to select their favorite Nativities among our collection of 3,600 sets representing more than 100 countries. We look forward to not only celebrating our volunteers this Christmas season, but again highlighting how people around the world ponder and picture the birth of Christ through many different cultural lenses.”

Volunteer favorites include sets composed of rubber ducks and gnomes; made of porcelain, wood, terra cotta and other materials; and representing France, Japan, Mexico and other countries and cultures.

Along with the volunteer favorites, the display includes a portion of the popular Provençal Village; work by artist Ruth Sanderson, who has illustrated more than 80 children’s books; Nativity sets from more than 30 countries displayed in boxes, drawers and cubicles; and Nativities in settings created by volunteer and retired math professor Harry Mushenheim.

Get more information on the exhibit at Or, explore the Nativity collection online.


News and Communications Staff