During the holidays, New York City has some of the world's most beautiful outdoor displays. This year, the iconic display of large vintage C7 Christmas light bulbs in front of the McGraw-Hill building at 1221 6th Avenue has gone green. The traditional display has been replaced with a giant string of thirty-one LED holiday lights. PRG Scenic Technologies partnered with the designers from American Christmas, a leader in holiday décor and installations, to build and install the massive display.
“We initially pitched the new design to our client, the Rockefeller Group, owners of 1221 6th Avenue,” said Lance R. Caffrey, Chief Production Officer, American Christmas. “The Rockefeller Group puts a lot of emphasis on being LEED-certified and being environmentally aware, so as a nod to that, we suggested they change the existing display of conventional holiday lights to a display of LED lights.” Caffrey, who worked closely with PRG, leads the manufacturing, logistics and production team of American Christmas.
The new display is modeled on M5 Mini Ice Christmas lights. It is 7 1/2 feet tall, 75 feet long and 10 feet deep. The entire structure weighs 6,000 lbs and was built in six sections for transport and storage. Each of the display lamps is internally lit by LED sources. The team experimented with different technologies to achieve the desired luminosity and even distribution of light. “Inside each display, we used a flexible circuit board with LEDs that is backed with an adhesive strip,” explained Chad Woerner, Project Manager, PRG. “We used five-meters of LED strip per display and an MR11 LED lamp at the top to get the light into the cone where the bulb comes to a point.”
Because the display draws only 7 amps, it is left on day and night. “We experimented with effects like chases and blinking, but in the end the design team and the building owners wanted to go for something more traditional,” continued Woerner.
“Working with PRG was a great experience,” said Caffrey. “This was something that had never been done before. The scale and the level of detail made it very challenging to take from concept to completion.”
PRG is no stranger to holiday displays in New York City. In recent years, they have provided the automation for the windows at Macy's department store, as well as for an American Christmas-designed chandelier in the lobby of Radio City Music hall that contains 80,000 Swarovski crystals.
The McGraw-Hill display is scheduled to remain on view from Thanksgiving through the second week of January.
For more information on PRG, please visit www.prg.com.
About American Christmas—(www.americanxmas.com) Saks Fifth Avenue, Radio City Music Hall, Bloomingdale's, Bergdorf Goodman, Rockefeller Center, J. Crew, and dozens of other legendary institutions. What do they all have in common? Holiday designs, installations and displays by American Christmas. As the foremost designer concentrating exclusively on holiday décor and installations, American Christmas is renowned as the industry leader. From traditional to cutting-edge contemporary, our sophisticated displays and imaginative designs dazzle shoppers and visitors at the most famous retailers and landmark buildings across America. More than any season, the holidays are made for magic. American Christmas. We Make the Magic.
About Production Resource Group—(www.prg.com) Production Resource Group, L.L.C. (PRG) is the world's leading supplier of entertainment technology solutions to a wide range of markets, including concerts, corporate and trade shows, theatre, TV and film, special events, and permanent installations, such as theme parks, museums, retail stores, and performing arts centers. PRG provides integrated services and equipment including lighting, audio, video, scenery, and automation systems for these markets from more than 28 offices in North America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.