Each year it gets even more fun judging the Pat and Kitty DuBose Memorial Christmas Light Challenge for HANK’s kids. Many families who enter year after year add to their displays in ways we could have never dreamed up, and many new ones too. Magic is the air as we check out these awesome Christmas Light displays that are helping to raise awareness for local foster children and helping to light up their lives by raising funds for the wonderful HANK organization that does so much for 200 local foster children in Medina, Real, and Uvalde Counties each year.
A special thank you to Devine Area Hospice Thrift Store which donated $5,000 to this good cause; to Medina Electric Coop who pledged $1,150 to HANK as part of this challenge, and also donated the 2nd place $250 gift card; and to the DJ Carlson Memorial Bust n’ Burn which donated the $500 Grand Prize gift card for the residential category, helping to make this fundraiser such a huge success year after year.
The 1st Place Award goes to the Powell family of Natalia who have lit up practically every inch of their 2 ½ acres with over 38,000 lights this year. Their sprawling Christmas light display on CR 6816 is inspired by their five grandchildren, and grandpa clearly knows what the magic of Christmas lights are all about. A snowman family, giant arches of lights, a huge US flag of lights, a beautifully lit archway entrance, and a huge tree of lights are among the many touches that make this display so much fun to see.
The 2nd Place Award goes to the Ruesch family of Devine, whose giant yard is truly transformed into a wonderland that children’s dreams are made of! There is magic in the air at this home on CR 768 you’ll find dozens and dozens of giant blow up characters including Santa’s animated reindeer, a giant Clydesdale horse, ginger bread men, playful penguins, minions, and just about everything you can think of. The property also beautifully lit up, and a giant tree of lights adorns the center of it all. A big wooden cross is beautifully lit with an angel overlooking the manger from the rooftop.
3rd Place and the “Most Comical” Award goes to the Schneider family of Devine for their magical display on Jay Drive, incorporating many hand-crafted penguin characters and displays. The sweet playful penguins made this display so much fun for the kiddos, and seeing that most of it was homemade with so much thought and care made it that much more awesome! On the left side, the puffy penguins were sliding down a homemade ramp of snow, and on the right, the little critters were on the homemade ice skating rink of lights. It is truly magical, with giant slow flakes in the air, and beautiful lights hanging from majestic Oak Trees overhead. We were amazed to see that the seven GIANT snowflakes were also hand-crafted using white hangers and white lights! Very clever!
The Nash family home on CR 6869 (last year’s grand prize winner) will receive the “I Believe in Santa Claus” Award this year for their sprawling Christmas display that is always a must see! If this display doesn’t warm your heart and make you feel the magic of Christmas, we don’t know what will. A custom-built building with a glass window shows an extremely life-like animated Santa rocking in his chair, reading his list. Santa couldn’t look more real and every kid will do a double-take at this display. On the comical side, a pesky little elf in their display is attempting to knock over the outhouse, and another animated life-like elf can be seen in the light house tower checking on Santa’s flight status using binoculars. Don’t forget about the elves working in Santa’s light factory in a huge display building. But front and center, the family’s display celebrates the true reason for the season, with a huge custom-built display of “The Inn” set beside a beautiful manger scene, three large wooden crosses, and even a display of the tomb telling the story of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.
The “Silent Night” Award goes to the Priest family of Lytle, for their beautiful living nativity scene. It was truly a special sight to see the young “Mary” and “Joseph” staring adoringly at baby Jesus. We have seen many beautiful nativity scenes over the years, but there is nothing quite like a live nativity played out by God’s beautiful children.
The “Most Creative” Award goes to the Doering family in Devine for their wonderful Christmas display that includes a homemade “village” with many Devine businesses/buildings including Devine News, Momentum Bank, Driscoll Public Library and George S Woods Community Center, and the old historic Driscoll home. They also have two huge life-size flags made of lights with both the US Flag and the Texas flag. Among a beautiful Christmas light garden, they also have a huge wooden reindeer and sleigh set among many other characters. Way to go! We loved the personal, unique and creative touches!
The “Best Animated” Award goes to the Warren family of Devine, which has an awesome animated display on Coker Ave. There is music in the air, as you watch the brilliantly planned light show amongst lots of fun characters. It is colorful, well-designed, and awesome to see!
The “Winter Wonderland” Award goes to the Richeson family of Devine. You can’t miss this brightly lit home on CR 7755 (GPS CR 7711) with a cascading waterfall of blue lights behind their beautiful nativity scene, surrounded by a flowing stream and green pasture of lights. A beautifully lit home, roof, and chimney is seen in the backdrop. Their awesome antique 1950’s waving Santa also adorns their home and is a truly unique addition to their awesome display.
The “White Christmas” Award goes to the Morris family of Natalia. As you drive up to this beautifully lit home, it feels like it should be snowing. The warm white and red lights that adorn the home couldn’t be prettier. Two lit wagon wheels, Mr. and Mrs. Gingerbread Man, among many other adorable characters playing on a ice skating rink made of lights make it even more fun.
The Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer Award goes to the Cassiano family of Devine, who’s beautifully lit home on Crouch Street lights up the entire neighborhood. So many cute characters including an angel, Santa, penguin, candy canes, gingerbread men, and Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer (who’s nose is shining bright) adorn the property where every inch is glowing with Christmas spirit. Every window, fence, and even the house is framed in lights gorgeously.
The “Most Magical” Award goes to the Jackson family in Moore, whose display is always lots of fun on CR 1629. It is filled with tons and tons of blowup characters and many unique ones as well. There is truly magic in the air as the kiddos check it out and gave all the snowman’s and Santa’s a gentle hug!
1st Place goes to Morales Realty, which is so beautifully lit with warm white lights lining their establishment for all to enjoy each and every year as you drive through Devine.
2nd Place goes to Country Gals Market, whose porch is filled with unique Christmas décor (much of it handcrafted) that will get everyone in the Christmas spirit.
3rd Place goes to Land and Ranch Services, whose beautifully lit big green Christmas trees light up CR 5710 across the field from the middle school.