Christmas Park Lights Up East Texas - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/21/04-Athens

Christmas Park Lights Up East Texas

Drive around East Texas enough and you're bound to come across one.  They're called Christmas light parks and they give folks the chance to enjoy a little holiday cheer without even getting out of the car.

One of the largest is located in Athens, just outside the Northwest Loop.  It's called the "Christmas Park Land of Lights" and it has been brining joy to both young and old for nearly a decade.

Garland Pool spends a lot of time these days, checking lights.  He's got to considering more than 30 acres of land he owns is covered with them.

"We had actually decorated our home drastically for a few years, we had some stuff left over and thought 'that might not be a bad thing to do'," said Garland.

What started out as a small, drive through Christmas park seven years ago has turned into a 30 acre park, filled with lights, decorations, and the Christmas spirit.

"We really didn't think we would expand that much but as time went by we would say hey why don't we try this why don't we try that and we would write the ideas down," he said.

Visitors that drive this mile and a half stretch will see a little bit of everything.  At night, the scenes get even better.  The work is all handcrafted, something the Pools are proud of.

"Everytime we go out, I don't care where we are someone brings up the Christmas park, and when are you open and what time... I guess we're known as the Christmas park people," said Patsy.

The Pools say they've put in a lot of hard work over the years, but say during Christmas, they are reminded what it's all for.

"I really think well we've done something no matter what it has cost maybe we've hit a lot of peoples lives and brought a lot of joy to people," said Garland.

The Pools hope they can spread that joy, one visitor at a time.

There are over 10 miles of extension cords used to connect the lights in the park.  Twenty main breaker boxes control the connections, and the electric bill runs a cool $8,000 a month.

The park is open daily, from 6 to 10:30 pm through January 1.  The costs is $10 per vehicle.

For more information you can contact the park at 903-675-7469.  Or visit them online at

www.christmasparkathens.com

Chris Gibson, reporting
cgibson@kltv.com

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