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Fourth Annual Window Contest Ready to Light Up Downtown Great Bend

Organizers of the annual “Christmas Window Decorating Contest” are hoping to brighten downtown Great Bend in holiday ambiance this year. Now in its fourth season, the anonymous donor, who is putting up $3,000 in prize money, is issuing a challenge: Let’s light up all downtown stores, not just the contest windows.

“Contest windows have been spectacular the previous three years; they have certainly helped bring attention to Great Bend as a Christmas city,” said the anonymous donor. “But we’d like to see even more window-decorating participation to light up all of downtown Great Bend this season. Even if you can’t do fully decorated windows, you don’t have to go all out; put some lights up. Let’s give people a truly memorable downtown Great Bend holiday experience.”

Window contest winners will be announced on Dec. 5 through local media channels. Window displays must be family friendly, creative and festive. They will be judged on Originality, Workmanship, General Presentation, and of course, Lights.

The first two categories of “Best Window Awards” will be selected by a panel of decorating professionals. “Judges 1st Place” will receive $1,500, and “Judges 2nd Place” will receive $1,000. The third prize of $500 is a “People’s Choice” award, which allows the public to choose their ‘Best Christmas Window’ by popular vote.

For “People’s Choice” voting, ballots and a voting box will be available outside of Rosewood Bargain Barn, 1215 Main Street, Great Bend. Details of the voting process will be provided as the holiday season draws closer.

Boundaries for the window-decorating contest cover 10th to 18th Streets, and from Williams to Kansas Streets in Great Bend.

There are no fees to enter, but participants are responsible for the cost of their decorations. Downtown business owners are encouraged to enter the contest, as well as those individuals who would like to become window decorators.

Participants who do not have a store window to decorate will be assigned a vacant window in downtown Great Bend, based on availability. Independent decorators also have the option to coordinate with a business owner for window decorating.

Participants must submit their application by 5 p.m. on Nov. 10 to be included in the judging.  They must complete decorating by noon on Nov. 20, and judging for the window decorations will run from Nov. 21 – Dec. 3.

The ‘Christmas Window Decorating Contest’ is organized by the Rosewood Roots & Wings Santa Committee that also is associated with ‘Santas Around The World,’ the multicultural holiday exhibit, which opens each Christmas season in downtown Great Bend.

Those interested in participating in the Christmas Window Decorating Contest may access rules and an application form at, or contact Anna at 620-793-5888 to receive an application form.

For those store owners who are not participating in the contest this year, it still benefits them to decorate, adding to the festive appearance of downtown Great Bend.

“A lot of times, folks stroll downtown after hours, and they may see something in your window that they come back for during business hours,” explained the anonymous donor. “It seems to me that we have gotten wider coverage and exposure each year that we have conducted the contest. Bringing that traffic and providing that exposure is an opportunity for every downtown business to make a positive impression on those potential shoppers.”


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For more information, contact Anna Hammond, Rosewood Services Business Development Director,, 620-793-5888.

October 25, 2023
Story by: Michael Dawes, director of public relations, Rosewood Services, 620-792-2536,