MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa -- A special Christmas collection 27 years in the making is on display again this year at the Marshalltown Mall.
Kathy Anzis has put her 1,400 Christmas candles on display, filling shelves inside a storefront of the mall.
“I just was collecting, sort of thinking about the holiday decorations for my own apartment once we got married,” said Anzis. “We got some over here and pretty soon it just kind of snowballed, more and more going to the dining room, and then they filled up the dining room, and then it was time to look for someplace else to share them.”
She has shared the collection at Christmas time here for about 10 years.
“Once they know that I’m the Christmas Candle Lady, I get that, they’ll say, 'oh, I’ve got some of these at home,' or, 'I remember my grandmother had that,'” said Anzis.
As a small girl, Anzis remembers her mom making candles.
“I just remember her making them, she had them upside down and poured in the mold, and I would take my finger and stick it in there and pull it up and see if I can get my whole finger in old wax mold," she said, although she does not possess any of her mother’s candles.
She had asked the Guinness Book of World Records if there was a category for Christmas Candles. They replied, saying someone else has a much bigger candle collection than hers, but she might win with a sub-category for Christmas candles. However, she said they didn’t want to have to define what a Christmas candle entails.
In the off-season, the candles are stored in 20 tubs in Anzis' basement. She credits friends who help her move the wax displays every year to put them on display.
The Christmas Candle Collection can be seen at the Marshalltown Mall until after New Year's Day.