Neighbors flip the switch on popular annual light show in Celebration

Lights on Jeater Bend runs until New Year’s Eve

As soon as the sun went down this Thanksgiving, holiday lights lined Jeater Bend Drive in Celebration. The creator of the neighborhood’s annual holiday light show for more than a decade says this will be the last year.

CELEBRATION, Fla. – As soon as the sun went down this Thanksgiving, the holiday lights lined Jeater Bend Drive in Celebration turned on. The creator of the neighborhood’s annual holiday light show for more than a decade says this will be the last year.

Justin Pickle said 13 years ago, The Lights on Jeater Bend premiered for the first time. Pickle said the setup for the displays can take months of preparations, adding it’s no easy feat to pull off. Thousands of people visit the Celebration street each holiday season, with law enforcement shutting down roadways to make room for the extra foot traffic.

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“This is a cumulation of 13 years of entertainment from all of the neighbors. A lot of work. Believe me. Months of work,” Pickle said. “Most people know us and come and tell us thank you and they’re sad that it’s going to go, but it’s been a long time.”

A bubble machine fills the street while a foam machine creates fake snow for children to play in.

“Seeing the kids playing in the snow and enjoying, I like to get it up over their heads. There’s snow on the house and in the trees,” Pickle said.

Organizers said the music and light show grew slowly throughout the years. Visitors are encouraged to contribute a $5 donation, but it is not required. Organizers said the donations go to several central Florida charities.

Sherwin Smith brought her grandchildren to the light show on Thursday evening. This was her first time seeing the display and was surprised to hear it was in its final year.

“It’s very beautiful. I love the lights. It gets you into the Christmas spirit,” Smith said.

Her two grandchildren, Kennedy and Tyler, said the display exceeded their expectations.

“I love the bubbles and all the houses and lights. It’s all good,” Kennedy said.

“My favorite is that house over there, it’s really good. I really like the lights and the woods around it and yeah it’s really good!” Tyler said.

The Lights on Jeater Bend will run every weeknight until New Year’s Eve.

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About the Author:

Troy graduated from California State University Northridge with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication. He has reported on Mexican drug cartel violence on the El Paso/ Juarez border, nuclear testing facilities at the Idaho National Laboratory and severe Winter weather in Michigan.