Cool lights, cooler cause - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Cool lights, cooler cause

By Jamey Boyum

MT. VERNON, TX (KLTV) - Seeing lights around your neighborhood this time of year is nothing new, but one East Texan is taking things to a whole other level.

On County Road 2045 in Mount Vernon, there is an incredible show with an important purpose.

Craig Craver has a passion. He loves to light up the night in his own way. It's a lot of work making art out of light.

"It's my fourth year to be doing this. It's gotten bigger every year. It started out around20,000 lights, with what we call in the lighting world controllers. Started out with two of those. I'm now up to 35,000 lights and five controllers," says Craver.

This is all much more impressive with the right music, but for legal reasons we can't play that song, so we sort of made due with Christmas-ish music.

The lights are just regular Christmas lights. Nothing special.

But Craver says, "What's special is the controllers that I have. They're computerized controllers. A program that I have on my computer runs from a cat 5 cable to those controllers."

It takes him about four days to set up the exterior cheer. But, to make the lights dance he has to fill in these little boxes so the controllers can work their magic.

"It can take anywhere from five to seven hours per minute of song," says Craver.

So you have to be serious about the art. His show is five songs long. Long enough for Santa to zero in on this landing zone.

"You could say that, you could say that," Craver joked, "I think my daughter might actually believe that."

She also may believe her dad played the dad in Christmas Vacation. Craver may not be Clark Griswald, but he is a Santa of sorts. He has a donation box in front of his show for the food bank. He thinks everyone deserves a Christmas dinner.

If you have a yard full of spirit, we'd love to see it.

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