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Concert, light display for a cause
Donations go to Family Haven
christmas lights 2 jd
Larry Drum’s yard is filled with trees, snowmen and other holiday decorations, all illuminated and synchronized to a musical show. - photo by Jim Dean
Larry Drum said it was a “snowball effect” that brought “Christmas Street” to Forsyth County.Drum has been decorating his house with thousands of lights for some time, but a few of his neighbors have joined in over the past couple years.“It was the kids,” Drum said of inspiration for the communal display.Neighbor Brian Todd said all it took for him to get started was his son Tucker, now 8, asking “why doesn’t our house blink like Larry’s?”After learning about their plan to join the light display, Todd said a young neighbor girl went home and said “Tucker’s daddy’s house is going to blink.”Between four houses on Bryn Ridge Court, about 160,000 lights now brighten the street and flash in time with Christmas music that can be heard on at 88.7 FM.One of those songs will come to life tonight when the singer, Judy Pancoast, performs “The House on Christmas Street” and other songs live in front of the Drum’s home.Drum said the song is a favorite of extreme decorators.“It just works well with the lights and it’s very topical,” he said.Pancoast has been traveling throughout the season to perform at home light displays. This stop will be her second to last.The neighbors and their children should all be be able to sing along to “Christmas Street” after hearing it nightly since Thanksgiving.The light show is open to the public each day at 5:30 p.m., closing at 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 9 p.m. every other night.New Year’s Day will be the last night to view the display.Though they run the light show each night, Todd said his family, and especially his kids, “never get tired of it.”Drum said it’s the excitement of children that makes all the hours of work so worthwhile.“You see the kids in the back seats grinning ear-to-ear,” he said. The display does take a lot of preparation time and volunteer hours directing traffic on the cul-de-sac.The neighbors work each weekend in November and the week of Thanksgiving to set up the display, but the planning begins well before that.Todd said he spent hours listening to Christmas music during the summer to set up the timing and appearance of the light display using computer software.Some of the pieces, like the spiral light trees, have been uniquely designed by the neighbors, Drum said.The display always changes, he said, and this year so did the focus.The light show is also accepting donations for Forsyth County Family Haven, a shelter for victims of violence.Last year, Drum said people were giving them donations even though they weren’t solicited.That money ended up going to the American Heart Association.