A "Nutcracker" window display in Minneapolis' North Loop neighborhood won the Judges' Choice Award in a national contest.
MartinPatrick3, at 212 N Third Ave., teamed up with the Minnesota Dance Theatre to display costumes from "The Nutcracker Fantasy" in its windows, which earned the retailer the inaugural Judges' Choice Award in the Winning Windows of North America contest.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this was the first year in 55 years the Minnesota Dance Theatre did not present Loyce Houlton's "Nutcracker Fantasy," but the theater teamed up with the retailer to keep the tradition alive in a new way.
This is the 21st year of the awards program, but the first year the contest had a category for retailers outside of New York City – and MartinPatrick3 beat out national brands for the top national prize.
“Several on the visual merchandising team who created the scenes at MartinPatrick3 actually began their careers in the windows of Dayton’s stores around the Twin Cities, under the direction of the legendary Andrew Markopoulos,” Judge Judy Bell said in a statement. “Today, those who walk by the windows at MP3 are reminded of the days of trips downtown to see the Dayton’s windows, reigniting treasured memories and bringing smiles to the faces of all.”
The contest aims to celebrate "the art and mastery of visual merchandising by honoring excellence in holiday windows," a news release says. Windows were judged on their originality and creativity; whether it captures the spirit of the season, entertains and delights; and a display's professionalism, execution and technical aspects.
The winning windows were announced on Dec. 16. In the New York City-only categories, Bloomingdale's took home the Platinum Award, Macy's Herald Square won the Gold Award and Anthropologie Rockefeller Center won the Silver Award.
The other national award – the PAVE People’s Choice Award – went to the City of Beverly Hills’ “Holiday Glamour on Rodeo” installation.