By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
The winners of the fifth annual CrestLights Christmas light contest have been announced.
Judging was completed on the evening of Sunday, Dec. 18 by three local judges, who drove to the sites, got out of their cars and walked around to examine each entry from all sides. They used a numerical ratings sheet to determine the winners. The criteria included creativity, complexity, visual impression, imagination and the all-important “WOW” factor.
In the residential category, the winner was Deborah Wheal on Bergstrom. The house had numerous visual vignettes in her front yard, for both daylight and nighttime viewing. There were penguins in a boat on the lake, a reindeer crossing, colorful lights strung everywhere, three blowup figures – including trees, giant lollypops, stuffed bears – all topped off with Christmas music. The recent snowstorm covered the yard with snow, which actually added to the display’s winter ambiance.
Wheal was shocked to have won. When presented the CrestLights trophy, she showed off the interior of her home to the judges, which was also completely decorated for Christmas, with many Santa tapestries and tasteful red and white decorations everywhere.
Winning second place was Wendy Everman on Thousand Pines Road. Her display has two distinct components. On the front patio were two lighted blowups of Santa riding motorcycles with candy cane lights and large Christmas light bulbs all around the yard. There was a lit-up tree and large holiday wreath on the door. On the other side of the yard was a large lighted nativity scene with white deer figurines and more. The display was designed to be delightful to be seen both at night and during the daylight.
Everman also was surprised to have won and received the large lighted award wreath with delight. As she received the wreath, she invited the judges in; the inside of her home was decorated with large Christmas stockings as curtain valences, and she showed off the nativity boards she had painted.
First-place winner for the business category was Designed by Faith. owned by Vicki Vargas, located in Lake Gregory Village on Lake Drive. There are multiple colorful painted figurines, including the Grinch, a reindeer and a child; large shiny candy canes and twinkling lights across the front of the store. On her patio was another display with colorful lights, including “a letters to Santa” mailbox; during the weekends Santa is there at the store for free photos. She has had a decorations giveaway and afternoon Christmas carol singing. The store is decorated for daytime or nighttime enjoyment.
Second-place winner was the Lake Gregory Company, under the management of Nathan Godwin. The recreation company not only has the large community Christmas tree on their property, but also decorated the boathouse with lights. Both light displays are located so their lights reflect upon the lake and are visible from all around the lake, bringing happiness to all who see them each evening.
The CrestLights contest was sponsored for the fifth year by The Treasure Box & Co. at Castle Grayson. The lighted Christmas bulb trophies were handmade by Grayson Lopez. The large lighted Christmas light bulb is filled with tiny lights.
Lopez – who thanked all who entered the contests – posted a map on Facebook of the many CrestLights entry locations so residents could drive by the homes on streets such as Geneva, Bernard, Albrun, Zurich, Thousand Pines Road, Lake Gregory Drive, San Moritz Drive and Highway 189 in Twin Peaks and enjoy the displays.
Deborah Wheal holding her first-place trophy in her Christmas decorated red and white kitchen. (Photos by Rhea-Frances Tetley)
The winning first-place holiday display at Designed by Faith on Lake Drive in Lake Gregory Village.
Wendy Everman next to the nativity scene in her front yard, holding her winning second-place wreath.