Need a clue where to go to find the best Christmas lights in town? Maybe your own ‘hood seems a little lacking in the luminescent festivities?
LightenUpCalgary.com is your sure bet to track where all the twinkling action is.
Founder David Stokes has been mapping Calgary’s community Christmas lights for five seasons now — and his map markers just keep growing and growing.
With the visionary help of his brother-in-law, Stokes came up with a plan to create an interactive web map, update it constantly and show Calgarians where to go to find the fanciest, most festive light displays.
“People that had these displays or knew of any light displays could log on and add a marker on a map,” explains Stokes.
“If you click on that light marker, or if you can tell what name it is, you can get directions from your house to there.”
He adds he doesn’t yet have his site to a point where you can actually find a whole route through the light activity, but it’s in the work for next year.
And Stokes’ list just keeps growing and growing. His site has seen more traction than ever in the past two years.
He started his shining brainchild using his own house as the supermodel.
Come Christmas time, he’s pretty much a celebrity in his Coventry Road northeast community — you certainly won’t see any plain string of lights here — his house runs an average of 12,000 LED’s, 40 strobe lights and 80 channels that are synchronized to music.
It may indeed by TLC-worthy, but don’t expect “Griswold” or “Mannford Man” -style either — neighbours aren’t “blinded” by Stokes’ lights.
He says as soon as December hits, that’s also when heavy “light”-seeing traffic hits his ‘hood — with his house at the helm.
He adds it takes about two-and-a-half days to set up his residential attraction — and close to a mile of extension cords.
His rule of thumb? Lights go up Dec. 1 and shut off right after New Year’s. However, due to growing public popularity, he thinks he may have to extend the latter date this year.