Museum of York County releases 2012 Vernon Grant ornament, card

Special to The HeraldNovember 15, 2012 

Santa eating a stack of pancakes and giving a thumbs up to an elf are the newest Vernon Grant images to become holiday trappings.

The Museum of York County for decades has released a card and ornament at the holidays featuring a Grant illustration.

Grant, the late Rock Hill resident and artist, is best known as the creator of the “Snap! Crackle! and Pop!” gnome-like characters that have served as cartoon icons for Kellogg’s Rice Krispies since 1933.

The 2012 Vernon Grant limited-edition ornament – titled “Thumbs Up” – depicts a jolly Santa commending one of Grant’s trademark gnomes, hammer in hand, for his excellent toy building. It’s available at the museum store for $19.99.

The Christmas card – titled “Breakfast with Santa” – shows Santa pouring syrup over a stack of pancakes, sitting across the table from an elf. It’s available at the store for $3.

For 25 years, the collectible, gold-plated ornament and card have been created from classic illustrations by Grant, who retired to Rock Hill in the 1940s. Grant created more than 100 holiday illustrations that have spanned two centuries.

“Thumbs Up” was originally commissioned for a 1954 Christmas card by “Designers & Illustrators” and was used again in 1989 as the museum’s holiday card. ChristmasVille, Rock Hill’s festival, adopted the image as inspiration for its “Thumbs Up Award,” the festival’s highest recognition.

The three-dimensional ornament is the third in the latest series, titled “Getting Ready for Christmas.” The images in the series show Santa’s activities leading up to his Christmas Eve flight.

Grant created “Breakfast with Santa” in 1971 as his family’s annual Christmas card.

In 1993, the image was issued as a limited-edition ornament in the “Santa’s Helpers” series. It also was included in a collection of five small cards packaged together and first sold in 1985.

Last year, visitors to ChristmasVille selected “Breakfast with Santa” as the most popular Vernon Grant image to be featured in ChristmasVille 2012.

Stocked store

The Cultural and Heritage Museum of York County presented the “Breakfast with Santa” card and “Thumbs Up” ornament to family members of Vernon Grant on Thursday.

The ceremony has become a tradition at the museum, with help from David and Jan Angel of Angel Insurance and Financial Services and Our Three Sons Broadcasting, including WRHI AM/FM and Interstate 107.

The ornament and card can be purchased at the museum store, which also sells handcrafted items for gift-giving, such as stained-glass stars, recycled mugs and local pottery.

The new holiday flour sack towels, featuring Grant’s Santa Claus images, make great bar or kitchen towels, according to the museum.

With the reopening of the renovated Settlemyre Plantarium, space and astronomical-related items also have been added.

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