By Audrey Esther, News9.com INsite Team
Oklahoma City -- North Pole City is the ultimate Christmas wonderland and keeps the holiday spirit alive all year long.
"There's very few places in the world that display Christmas like this," North Pole City owner David Green said. From floor to ceiling practically every square inch is adorned with perfectly placed ornaments, carefully trimmed trees or intricate holiday displays. Decorating almost 20,000 thousand square feet with holiday collectibles and trinkets begins months before the holiday season.
"It's very time consuming," said floor manager Connie Maberry who's been decorating the store for more than 20 years. Maberry said she usually begins decorating at the beginning of April and continues to update displays until Christmas.
Maberry said she never tires of decorating and Green said he never tires of Christmas.
"You know, I'm already looking forward to the January markets," he said, which is when he buys a majority of next season's decorations. "I'm already looking forward to seeing what the new things are going to be."
Faithful customers from across the state come to North Pole City each season to shop and get in the holiday spirit. Harrah resident Judy Oedewaldt has already made two visits this year.
"I've been coming here for about eight years," she said. "It's an experience everyone should have."
For the store's littlest shoppers, a ride aboard the North Pole City Express is a must.
"I've been here since I was little; my mom always brought me to ride the train and see Santa, so we're bringing the kids to see it," customer Jennifer Campbell said.
The store's elaborate display has even caught the attention of celebrity chef Paula Dean. Last year Dean flew North Pole City staff to Georgia to decorate her holiday set.
"They asked us back again this year, but again they don't prepare long enough in advance so we weren't able to do it this year," Green said.
For 21 years North Pole City has been located at 4201 S Interstate 44 Service Road, but in the next couple of years Green said he plans to expand and relocate at an undetermined location in Oklahoma City.