Trying to recapture just a smidge of the holiday spirit that we felt as children, we have been doing a lot of driving around looking at Christmas lights. My favorite part of residential displays is that everyone gets to embrace wacky tacky, if just for a season. With few exceptions, there really is no such thing as a "tasteful" use of life-size reindeer and Santa legs sticking out of the chimney top. Our street, a cul-de-sac with absolutely nothing to prove to passing motorists, has always been a bit lackluster when it comes to ostentatious light displays. Nary an inflatable Grinch nor blow-mold snowman bedecks a single yard on our street (our house included). Fortunately, there are plenty of neighborhoods around that aren't so resolutely "Bah, humbug!"
Even in neighborhoods resplendent with holiday cheer, there is always that one guy. The one who takes things to a new level of fantastic, electricity-sucking light pollution that is so spectacular I'm almost positive that his contribution to yuletide excess can be seen from outer space!
Recently we went with our pals Emily and Jesse (Emily of The Silver Screen Affair fame) to check out a house in Hesperia, CA that has become such a tourist attraction that it makes the local news every year and even has its own website.
|Welcome to the winter wonderland;|
this is only the beginning.
With at least an acre of land, this property boasts more light bulbs per square foot than Disneyland (according to my rough calculations). What it might lack in Disney's finesse, it makes up for in colloquial charm...
|When was the last time you saw Santa peeking from |
behind the outhouse door looking for more toilet paper?
|I don't know if they still do it, but my elementary school always had Santa|
arrive in a helicopter the day before we left for vacation. This light fixture
left me feeling a little nostalgic.
|One of the tunnels of lights|
|Pink flamingoes, palm trees, and a ribbon.|
The Peanuts Gang
|Despite the popular verse, I was indeed able to catch|
The Gingerbread Man!
|I hope so!|
A bit of patriotism amid the Christmas splendor
|A winter fountain|
|Action shot! ACE ON EAR indeed!|
|Every building on the property was used in show.|
Straight from the North Pole, was that dynamic duo, Mr. & Mrs. Santa Claus
|Mary & Emily on Santa's lap.|
It looks like everyone's Christmas wish is coming true!
I love that, much like well-maintained yards and houses, a similar sense of homeowner pride is exhibited in the neighborhoods that adopt these over-the-top displays. This was definitely the house with most extensive, elaborate display that we visited, but our encounters with extreme holiday showmanship were both frequent and far flung!
|This maison of yuletide merriment had a working ski lift that carried elves and snowmen|
to the top of the roof/slope and flailing legs of a skier stuck in a snowbank.
|This house had a light spectacular that synchronized the lights with its own radio broadcast!|
|Have you seen any outrageous displays this season?|
Are you "that guy/gal" with the out-of-this-word holiday lights?
Here is one more wish that all of you wacky tacky turkey necks have a very Merry Christmas and a peaceful and Happy New Year!