THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING

Windows designed to open the doors

Awards highlight small businesses

The storefront at The Switch in Hyde Park took first place in a 160-shop window-decorating competition. The storefront at The Switch in Hyde Park took first place in a 160-shop window-decorating competition. (John Blanding/ Globe Staff)
By Akilah Johnson
Globe Staff / December 22, 2010

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And the award for Boston’s most decked out neighborhood shop window goes to . . . The Switch in Hyde Park.

“Can you believe it?’’ gushed Pat Tierney, owner of the new pop-up store space on Fairmount Avenue.

Tierney’s holiday display won first place, out of a field of more than 160 small businesses that decorated their store windows as part of the city’s inaugural Deck the Windows of Boston Main Streets contest.

A sparkly white Christmas tree, larger-than-life nutcracker, glittery red presents, and dangling snowflakes — all of which light up — fill the front window. The idea was to have the window “pop’’ because The Switch is a pop-up store, Tierney said. The design was by a friend.

A pop-up store serves as a temporary location for retailers, artists, nonprofit organizations, and others who need space to sell merchandise or hold an event.

Most of the city’s Main Streets districts picked one window as a favorite, creating a pool of 15 finalists that was whittled down to five by more than 5,500 people who voted online. Those five were then pared down to three winners by a panel of fashion editors and museum curators.

Mayor Thomas M. Menino yesterday also announced the second and third place windows: Wicked Sharp Ski & Snowboard in West Roxbury and A Piece of Heaven in Brighton.

But the contest’s real goal is attracting more customers. “We want people to come to the business district,’’ Tierney said.

Akilah Johnson can be reached at ajohnson@globe.com.