When the holiday season arrives you can do one of two things. You can compete with the neighbours' lights and decorations or just brighten your mood and walk or drive from house to house, admiring the colourful illuminations.
If you have an elaborate or jaw-dropping light display and want to share it with the entire community, it’s time to check out the third annual Light Up St. Albert competition.
St. Albert Kinsmen, the festival sponsors, are once again trying to spread holiday cheer. The service club is searching for the most festive streets and most festive homes where residents have worked hard to put up light displays that create magical winter wonderlands.
“For me this brings me back to my childhood. I now see the lights and excitement in my daughter. Lights brighten things when it gets dark so quickly and they cheer people up,” said Brent Jenkins, light festival organizer.
This year, Kinsmen have made a couple of changes. They have added two extra categories but reduced the prize amount. Returning is the Festive Street category with participants eligible to win $1,000 for their favourite charity. Also returning is the Festive Home category whereby a single homeowner is eligible to win $500 in a 50/50 split for the resident and their charity of choice.
Two additions for first-time applicants are the Most Festive New Street and Most Festive New Home.
“In this category, past winners are not applicable. We added this because for the first two years, we always had the same people in the running. By adding more categories, we’re hoping to attract more people,” Jenkins said.
The golden pot for the new categories varies slightly from the established ones. Two prizes are awarded in each one. For the Most Festive New Street, the prizes for charity are first place $1,000 and second place $800. The two top winners of the Most Festive New Home are respectively $500 and $300 split equally between the homeowner and their favourite charity.
The competition is limited to homes within St. Albert city limits. No commercial premises or professional displays will be considered.
Residents are asked to post photos of their light display on the St. Albert Kinsmen Facebook page. Individuals who prefer to use email can submit their photo to [email protected] and administration will post the photo on Facebook.
The contest started Thursday, Dec.1 and closes Thursday, Dec. 15. Judging begins Friday, Dec. 16. Results will be announced the following week.
The 2021 recipients of the Most Festive Home category were first-place winners Lindsey and LeeAnne Gullett of 29 Naples Way. Second-place recipients were Daryle and Jodi Demery at 7 Patterson Crescent.
Elliot Place took home first place for Most Festive Street, while Noble Park in North Ridge came a close second.