FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Three small, but nostalgic parts of the Fort Wayne Christmas season have been given new life. In what’s become an annual tradition, animatronic elves that called Wolf and Dessauer home are put on display in a bay window of a house at Main and Watkins Street.
“Everybody loves seeing the W and D elves again,” Chris Shatto told WANE 15.
Each year, Shatto sets up the elves in the window of his home during the first or second week of December. Once the power is switched on, the elves seem to have the power to take people who stop by back in time.
“It’s kind of one of those things… we have a lot of people that come very year and want to look at them and talk about them,” Shatto said. “And it seems like every year there’s new folks as well.”
Looking for other Christmas decorations, a silver tree and a spinning color wheel to be exact, Chris Shatto came across the old elves at an auction about 10 years ago. He knew they needed a lot of work.
“They were all in disarray, broken up,” Shatto explained. “The motors didn’t work in them, the clothes were almost non-existent. I almost paid nothing for them. Don’t even know why I grabbed them.”
Maybe that can be chalked up to some Christmas magic from years past. The elves used to light up the faces of children along downtown streets, peering into the Wolf and Dessauer windows.
With the prodding of a neighbor, who put together new outfits, and some TLC, the elves got new life about about a mile-and-a-half and a half-century away from their old home.
“It’s just the perfect window.. the big bay window in the pretty gingerbread house on Main Street,” Shatto added.
Memories of the elves and Wolf and Dessauer are shared on the facebook page Wolf and Dessauer Magic Window.