Thank You for Your Business!

I'd like to take a moment to personally thank all of our customers for their business over the past many years. We have all been in this together, and I truly appreciate your continued support during these challenging times. 

 

We are very grateful to have you as a customer, and we appreciate your confidence in our company’s ability to best serve and support you and your business. As you know, we always welcome your questions and comments, and our dedicated customer service team will continue to make every effort to provide you with the solutions you need. We look forward to continuing to serve you in 2022.  

 

I wish you, your staff and your families a happy, safe and prosperous New Year! 

 

Jim O’Connell 

President, Hotsy Pacific/Northbay Equipment Service & Sales 

Because we all enjoy having something to smile about (and some fun trivia for holiday get-togethers), here are 12 fun - and unusual - holiday facts that you might not know.

The crew of NASA's Gemini 6A space flight got into the Christmas spirit and made history when they played "Jingle Bells" on December 16, 1965. It was then entered into the Guinness Book of World Records as being the first song ever played in space.

However, Jingle Bells wasn’t written for Christmas. It was originally composed in the 1850s as a Thanksgiving song written by a Unitarian church organist, James Lord Pierpont, in Savannah, Georgia, and was first performed at his church during a Thanksgiving concert. Who knew?

NORAD has been tracking Santa's journey around the world since 1958. According to their story, it started in 1955, when "a young child accidentally dialed the unlisted phone number of the Continental Air Defense Command (CONAD) Operations Center in Colorado, believing she was calling Santa Claus after seeing a promotion in a local newspaper." Colonel Harry Shoup, the on-duty commander, assured her that CONAD would guarantee Santa a safe journey from the North Pole. 63 years later, they still track Santa's travels each year delighting kids of all ages.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is most recognized from his 1964 TV movie with Burl Ives. However the plucky reindeer first appeared in 1939 when the Montgomery Ward department store asked 34-year-old copywriter, Robert L. May, to create a Christmas story the store could give away to shoppers as a promotional gimmick. Montgomery Ward distributed 2.4 million copies of the story in the first year of its publication.

Tinsel on a tree always adds sparkle, and has been used for centuries. But it’s changed quite a bit. According to the BBC, tinsel originated in the early 1600s in Nuremberg, Germany, where people "used thin strands of real silver in their trees to reflect candlelight, as they used to put real candles in their trees." And since silver was expensive, being able to use tinsel in your tree was considered a status symbol.

The Statue of Liberty is officially the largest Christmas present in the world. Standing over 150 feet tall and weighing 225 tons, it is massive. It was considered a holiday gift when it was given to the U.S. by France in 1886. Sheathed in copper, the entire statue shone like a beacon in the harbor for many years. Over the decades, it turned green as the copper oxidized.

Inventor Thomas Edison is credited with the light bulb, phonograph, and even the movie camera. But he’s also partially responsible, along with his friend Edward H. Johnson, for inventing Christmas lights. He created the first strand of electric lights in 1880, and hung them outside his laboratory. However, in 1882, Johnson, his partner at Edison Illumination Company, became the first to wrap a strand of hand-wired red, white, and blue bulbs around a Christmas tree.

Wedding experts and social media data reveal that Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are the two most popular days of the year to propose, with literally hundreds of thousands of proposals taking place during the Christmas season. Break out the mistletoe!

The lovely song, "Silent Night" is the most recorded song in history, with over 700 copyrighted versions. The song itself is over 200 years old, and was written in 1816 by Joseph Mohr, a young priest in Austria, not long after the Napoleonic wars. The melody was written by Franz Xaver Gruber, the choir director. It was first performed in 1818, and carried around Europe by two families of traveling folk singers.

The tradition of putting up a Christmas has been around for centuries, and can be traced back to Germany in the 16th century when Christians brought decorated trees into their homes. The custom came to the U.S. in around the start of the 1800s as German settlers immigrated to Pennsylvania. Today, there are over 600 species of conifer trees from which to choose your tree – and every state, including Hawaii, grows Christmas trees!

Poinsettias have been associated with Christmas for nearly 200 years. In 1828, the American minister to Mexico, Joel R. Poinsett, brought a flowering plant back home to America. Taking their name from Poinsett, the plants gained popularity in the U.S. after stores in New York began to sell them at Christmas in 1870. Today, they are synonymous with the holidays, and come in an amazing array of colors.

You say ‘Santa Claus’… Did you know that the great gift-giver has over 30 names around the world? In Hungary he goes by Mikulás, while those in Brazil refer to him as Papai Noel. In Japan, he is Hoteiosho, Weihnachtsmann in Germany, Julenisse in Norway, Babbo Natale in Italy, and Père Noël in France. And a final fun fact – Santa wore many colors over the centuries, including tan, green, navy and more. In the past century, thanks to global communication, today he is usually shown dressed in red.