Hallmark star Wes Brown in the Countdown to Christmas movie Haul Out the Holly. (Image: Hallmark Media)

Hallmark star Wes Brown recently attended Christmas Con in New Jersey, where he kept getting the same hilarious gift from fans: nutcrackers.

In an Instagram post, the actor said many fans brought him nutcrackers as a reference to his Christmas-loving, detail-oriented character Jared Farnsworth, in the Countdown to Christmas movie Haul Out the Holly.

“…I never expected to receive gifts,” Brown wrote. “The amount of you who brought me nutcrackers (Haul Out The Holly nod) amongst others, please know I took all of them home and my collection begins, so THANK YOU.”

Hallmark star Wes Brown

Brown was one of many Hallmark stars who turned out for Christmas Con 2022, which was held at the New Jersey Expo Center in Edison. During the three-day event he met fans, signed autographs, and posed for photos. He also received nutcrackers of all shapes and sizes.

“Guess I’m the nutcracker guy and I’m here for it!” Brown wrote on Instagram.

Haul Out the Holly

Haul Out the Holly premiered as part of the 2022 Hallmark Channel’s Countdown to Christmas lineup. In the movie, Brown played Jared, president of the homeowner’s association in a neighborhood obsessed with Christmas. He takes his job seriously, calling meetings to discuss cookie baking, tree-lighting ceremonies, and snowmen tableaus, while also walking the street, citation pad in hand, ready to cite anyone for not having the proper decorations up.

Though he gets cooperation from most of the people in the neighborhood, he butts head with Lacey Chabert’s character, Emily, who is staying at her parents’ home while they spend the holidays in Florida. Emily, who has just broken up with her boyfriend, wants nothing to do with the neighborhood Christmas celebrations. But Jared keeps issuing citations, so she reluctantly gets involved.

The nutcracker connection

In one hilarious scene, Jared slaps a citation on Emily’s door because she hasn’t put out a nutcracker on the front porch, an HOA requirement during the holidays.

Emily picks up a small nutcracker and places it on the porch. Jared insists that it doesn’t fulfill the requirement as the nutcracker needs to be “36 inches from shoe to chapeau.”

European artisans first began carving ornamental nutcrackers during the 15th century. As the years passed, the designs became more elaborate. Nutcrackers came to be associated with Christmas when E.T.A. Hoffmann’s short story “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” was adapted into a ballet in 1892.

Many of Brown’s fans said they were inspired by his character to start their own collection.

“I bought my first Nutcracker ever after watching this fantastic movie!” wrote a fan on Brown’s Instagram page.

“I just had to buy nutcracker ornaments for the tree this year as a nod to Haul Out The Holly,” wrote another.

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