Maybe the best part of Christmas when you're a kid is that you keep those memories and then access them during the holiday season. Regarding getting into the Christmas spirit, that always does it for me.

So I took pictures of my five favorite "Christmas places" from my childhood that are still around, even if three of them now have a different name and one of them now has a different use.

1. Anderson's Department Store

Dave Spencer

Today, it's the Owensboro Museum of Science and History, but nostalgic vibes still emanate thanks to the building STILL looking like it did when my family began Christmas season by going through those doors that faced 3rd Street. Anderson's didn't have a toy department, but the store--a really old-school style department store--was really the "gateway" to downtown Owensboro for us when I was a boy. That's because when we went downtown, we always parked across 3rd Street in the lot surrounded by...

2. The Anderson's Department Store Parking Lot Wall

Dave Spencer

I've separated this wall from the store in this list because it's on the list for a very different reason. What you see in the photo is where my family and I would sit and watch the Owensboro Christmas Parade. Back then, it would start at 11th and Frederica, then turn down 3rd before turning down Lewis Street (now J.R. Miller Blvd). It eventually backed off to Daviess Street and now the parade just goes straight down 2nd Street. But back in the day, that wall was OUR parade spot.

3. Whatever This Bank Used to Be Called

Dave Spencer

Yes, it's Chase Bank now, but when I was a little kid, it was another bank. I want to say it was Old National, but I'm not sure. Anyway, it's on this list because this was where the Owensboro Kiwanis Club would hold its annual Christmas auction for charity and the auction was broadcast on WOMI. My dad was in Kiwanis and we'd all go down there during the auction. My mom volunteered in some capacity and us kids just hung out somewhere else in the building and played (and tried not to get into trouble). That's always been a really fun memory.

4. Hall Street Baptist Church (now Life Community Church)

Dave Spencer

This is where my family went to church and when I was a kid, there was always something happening during the Christmas season. Whether it was the live nativity--which became a drive-through nativity--or the puppet shows (yes, I was in the puppet ministry and STILL remember that you only move your thumb, not your entire hand) or caroling or outreach. Whatever, Christmas was always a hoppin' time at Hall Street. And, by the way, the HOTTEST hot chocolate I ever drank I drank in the Hall Street basement. Another "burning" memory.

5. The Old Evansville Courthouse

Ashley Sollars

A long time ago, the old courthouse in downtown Evansville was home to this enormous Christmas event during the holiday season. I honestly can't remember what it was called. But you'd walk from room to room and there'd be a different HUGE Christmas scene in each room. It fascinated me when I was a kid. And, of course, Santa Claus greeted us at the end. We never had a Christmas season in our family without a trip to Evansville.

What about you? What are some of your favorite "Christmas places" when YOU were a kid?