If your in the Sarasota/Bradenton area in December this is definitely a trip worth making.
Chuck Pierson, the man in charge of the “Christmas at Grace” light display, has been perfecting how to create light displays long before he was the man in charge of over a half-million lights.
He said his passion for lights made for great Christmas displays at home, even when he was a small child.
Holiday light displays at the Pierson home became a family tradition, which turned into a neighborhood tradition and then became too large for one house to hold.
As his display got more popular, he said, it also became more hazardous because of the increased traffic.
In 2008, Pierson turned the switch on the light display at Grace Baptist Church for the first time as he was turning off his house’s.
At Grace Baptist Church, where Pierson volunteers his time, his display is one of the largest Christmas light displays in Sarasota.
“Every year it just gets bigger and bigger,” Pierson said.
If you go to Grace Baptist, you will see over 500,000 lights, which is 100,000 more than last year, synced to music that creates a one-of-a-kind light show every 25 minutes.
Since Halloween, Pierson and over 100 volunteers have been getting “Christmas at Grace” ready. The switch is flipped on at 6 p.m. on Dec. 9. Admission is free and the display runs nightly from 6-10 p.m. Refreshments are provide while supplies last. Donations are accepted.
The church estimates that over 60,000 people attended the event last year.
And next a Taster of what to expect:
2011 – 500,000 Lights