Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Christmas 2006

What a year! The display has grown from 16 channels and 8 ,000 lights last year to 48 channels t0 13,000 lights today. We found several obstacles this year that delayed the final completion of the display and we have started planning for Christmas 2007 as we speak. We will expand by another controller, maybe two. We purchased another 10,000 lights during the sales this year.
Chris wants to build a Mega-Tree for next year, Laura wants the three pine trees illuminated.

Our Toy-for-Tots collection went well for our first year, although we forgot to count the toys we did have a chance to photograph the toys collected. I would like to personally Thank all the families that supported the Toys for Tots this year, without your caring several children in the valley would not have had a Merry Christmas.

We collected two full bins of toys that where delivered to SSgt Telles on Friday December 22.

We plan on continuing to be a Toys for Tots collection location next year, hoping to be even more successful.

Again, a warm Thank You to everyone whom participated.

After Christmas Sales, I have waited for this day all year, I was not going to let this day pass without trying to get my share of sale items. I started at Lowes a week ago, they placed all holiday decorations on 50% off one week before Christmas. I was able to procure 3 bundles of garland, 5 metal flood light bases, 5-6" clear light balls, the only lights they had left on the shelf was clear. Well the day after Christmas, we pushed ourselves to get out of bed and headed out early to the super Wal-Mart, I was a little disappointed when we arrived, not much was left to pick over, I did get my hands on 2 multi nets, 2 red nets, 2 blue nets, 5 flood light bases, 4 icicles all for 50% off. Our next destination took us to Home Depot, they had lights but little decorations, we walk out with 24 Gold - 100ct strings and 24 Red strings at 75% off.....I should have bought more......Next I went to the other Home Depot which had absolutely nothing so we went to Wal-Mart in East Lancaster and found the mother load of lights. We walked out with 4 blue nets, 10 green candy canes, 20 green and 20 blue strings, several plug adapters, and a few other items.

Traffic this year again picked up Christmas week, exploding on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. We placed our patio fire place and enjoyed the lights and company of others several nights this year. We had two nights of rain this season, one of them requiring us to shut down, while we enjoyed the lights Christmas Eve, Denver Colorado was under 4 feet of snow, Christmas in Southern California does have it's advantages.

Take down will begin after the first of the year, and the display will continue until New Years Eve nightly. We expect the take down to take approximately 4 days.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Rick Williams

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Show - Day 19

The display has been running for 19 days now. No problems have come up and traffic has been good although it is picking up as we get closer to Christmas.

The Toys for Tots bin has been out every night, we have had at least three families generously donate toys. I'm hoping this will continue through the season.

The web site is getting hits from visitors on average of 130 per night. Tonight we passed the 11,000 unique hit mark with about 80,000 page views.

We still continue to modify the display and sequences trying to make things a little better.
We have exceeded the 1 mile mark in extension cords.

Nightly, I am setting up things around 5:00 PM, if you are in the area and you would like to see how things operate, feel free to stop by and say hello.

Thanks to everyone whom has sent emails or posts on the BLOG or the Guest Book, your kind words really make this worth while, I'm glad everyone is enjoying the display.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Show - Day 9

The display has ran without any problems since Friday November 24th. We continually add to the display when time and temperatures permit. We had a cold spell hit us last week taking us into the teens, very cold in my opinion, so we did not do much to the display. Last Thursday things started to warm up for us while the rest of the nation went into the same deep freeze, several other lighting enthusiast were hit hard either by wind, snow or ice and lost several component to their display.

Traffic has picked up from one car every 1/2 hour to 2 or 3 cars at a time on Saturday night. Unfortunately the Tots for Tots is not going as well as expected, we have yet to collect a single toy, aside from what we have placed into the bin. I am hoping this changes as the traffic to the display changes.

We installed 10-100 light balls into the tree and built the wire harnesses to power them, hoping to have them illuminated tonight. We installed the Candy Canes (18), they are not wired yet, not sure how we are going to set them up, Laura wants them all to be individually controlled but that will take another 1800 feet of SP2 wire. We have the channels available just not the wire.

We are still re-Sequencing last years music, still have several to complete.

Happy Holidays,

Rick Williams