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The Best Christmas Inflatables for 2012

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The Best Christmas Inflatables for 2012
santa claus inflatable

A giant Santa Claus inflatable towers over the cacti and succulents at the Ethel M Chocolate Factory and Desert Botanical Garden in Henderson, Nevada.

Photo © Lisa Hallett Taylor
Inflatables have become many people's favorite holiday decorations. It's all about easy, space-saving storage and instant gratification: two of the new virtues that will be included in William Bennett's updated version of The Book of Virtues.*

To refresh your memory, inflatables come in boxes that are often no larger than 2' x 2'. Yet, when plugged in to an electrical outlet, inflatables quickly fill up with air, grow taller and wider, are lighted, and sometimes include extra features, like animation and music. Decorators put them on their front lawns, porches, balconies or roofs -- pretty much anywhere they will fit. For some, it's fun to place their airblown snowmen and helicopters next to nativity scenes and older blow-mold decorations, just for kicks. Others plan out sections of their yard to include groupings of related characters. Like everything, websites exist for collectors and fans of inflatables.

So, what's new for 2012 in the world of inflatable, airblown holiday characters? We've noticed a few trends:

  • Rednecks and rifle-toting hunters (because that's what hunters tote, after all)
  • Extra-large characters
  • More animation
  • Freezing, teeth-chattering characters (see, that global warming thing is true).

    Without further assessment, we present to you our picks for Best New Christmas Inflatables for 2012.

    *Just kidding. To our knowledge, there are no new virtues, nor is there a revised edition of The Book of Virtues in the works.

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