Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Christmas Video!

A few days ago my husband brought home a Christmas CD. He thought he was buying orchestral music. Well, sort of, in a rocky way. It was the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Over the weekend I popped in the CD to listen to it.

One song caught my attention. “Hey,” I know that!” It’s the tune for that totally rad
video of flashing Christmas lights that I watched over and over again last year. You all probably saw it somewhere, either on the Internet, or perhaps a little part of it on the Miller Light beer commercial.

Well, my goodness, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s song (“Wizard in Winter”) got me in the mood for watching the video again. Besides, it’s Christmas season. So I went hunting on the Internet. Took me all of about 10 seconds to find it.

Turns out, according to, the light show was the work of Carson Williams, an electrical engineer from Mason, Ohio. I always wondered about the guy’s poor neighbors. I mean, I love the music—but every night, over and over again? Turns out Williams put up signs for all the folks who drove to see his display, telling them to tune into a certain low-frequency radio channel to hear the music. The neighbors got to sleep after all.

Williams sequenced 16,000 lights to the music in his 2004 show, and over 25,000 in his 2005 version (at a cost of $10,000). Unfortunately he had to discontinue his display after traffic became so snarled that someone had an accident. Now Williams is showing his
display in Heritage Oak Park on Highway 42 from December 2 through 31. Man, I wanna go! Anybody from that area who can tell about it firsthand?

Another of Williams’ displays at his house can be seen
here. The music’s not nearly as much fun, though. Give me the TSO any day.


Anonymous said...

I have never seen that! I am SO glad you posted about this. And Ohio is almost close enough to visit. (Will I make it home if I do go?)

Anonymous said...

The Trans-Siberian Orchestra was on Live with Regis and Kelly this morning. They totally rocked (pun intended).

Richard L. Mabry, MD said...

I appreciate your pointing the way to the video. I guess that's a disadvantage of using TiVo--we rarely see commercials.

I couldn't help noticing that there were only two "symbols" in the display: a star and a peace symbol. It made me curious about what Christmas really means to Mr. Williams. Just a passing thought.

On a lighter note, I also wonder if he has to keep all the other lights in his house off in order not to mess up the display. Or maybe he just has really, really good drapes.

Anyway, thanks for giving us the info. (And I'll be humming "Wizard in Winter" all day).

Anonymous said...

We're only about 30 minutes away from Mr. William's home. We never got a chance to actually see the display last year, but we did see the video tons of times.
Wizard in Winter is a very cool song. Have a great day!

Susanne said...

Oh my word! That's a lot of work!

We had a neighbor who had an incredible display in the front and backyard. It started Dec. 1 and went thru to the end of December. They were out there everynight greeting people with candycanes. A night or two Santa and Mrs. Clause came on the roof. Another night the big local hockey team guys came to hand out candy canes. There were hay rides around the block a couple times a week. The had a petting zoo in the carport. The traffic was unbelieveable. Each year they would take donations for a different charity. They raised tons of money for these charities. They finally sold it all a few years back and you know we were all sad to see it go actually.

Bonnie S. Calhoun said...

I've got last year's video saved on my computer. That's always amazing to watch!

Anonymous said...

That is so cool. There is a family a few blocks from my house who did the same thing this year, but not as fancy. We keep driving past it. My daughter is amazed. She flipped out when she realized it was going with our radio. LOL.

tina f