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Tour of Homes: Christmas in Thomson lights up season

When the lightshow in Crawfordville closed down, the Haddens decided they would pick up the slack.

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Homeowners Billy and Pam Hadden pose with a lighted Santa. Click here to see more pictures
Jason Smith
The light display at their Wheeler Road home outside Thomson has grown every year and now includes almost 30,000 lights. And the exhibit certainly attracts a crowd.

"We used to go to Crawfordville all the time, and then Crawfordville quit doing it," Pam Hadden said. "Christmas is our favorite time of the year, and we just decided to start and do a little at a time. And each year we grow bigger and bigger."

Aside from the lights, several displays line the yard including Disney characters, nativity scenes and a cross. In the past, the yard has featured a section with memorials to loved ones. This year the Haddens wanted to do something a little different.

The memorial section has been adapted to include a tribute to the troops overseas. Two signs simply read, "Oh come all ye faithful" and "Let there be peace on Earth."

The Haddens also paid tribute to law enforcement with their display. One blue bulb burns at the entrance to their driveway in honor of the service and protection that law enforcement officers provide.

The Haddens started constructing this year's display of lights in the middle of October.

It debuted this year, like it does every year, on Thanksgiving night. And despite what people may think, the Hadden's electric bill is not any more expensive than it would be after running the air conditioner in the summer.

And they aren't alone in doing all the work. Mrs. Hadden said that her next door neighbor Bill Harper is instrumental in setting up the display.

"He comes over every night and makes sure everything is up and going," Mrs. Hadden said.

Chase Butler also helped with the display. He made the two signs in the yard.

Once everything is ready, the visitors start arriving. Weekdays are fairly slow as visitors go, but the Haddens love the weekends. When kids are out of school, parents tend to bring them out to see the lights. This year's crowd has been at least as steady as last year's.

The Haddens hope for a big turn out of people who come to enjoy their light display and get into the Christmas spirit.

They don't ask for donations to support the display, but the Haddens differ on how many visitors they would like to see during the holiday season.

"My husband can get by with 10 cars coming by," Mrs. Hadden said. "Me, with all that had work, I'd like to see a tremendous crowd of folks come by."

The Haddens have several hopes for people who come to see their display. They hope that visitors will remember the true meaning of Christmas, as well as remember those in the armed forces who can't be home for the holidays.

"It's just the thrill of the seeing the kids and hearing the kids that come by every night ooing and ahhing over the display because we do hear a lot of that," Mrs. Hadden said.

The display is on nightly from 6 to 10 p.m. It will be cut off for the season on Dec. 28.

GETTING THERE: To visit the Hadden's display, go about 5 miles past Kentucky Fried Chicken on Wrens Highway and make a right onto Quail Farm Road Take a left on Wheeler Road after about a mile.



Web posted on Thursday, December 11, 2003











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