Let’s light-en up for the holidays | Mann Overboard

Bill Mann
Posted 12/22/22

Hitch up the metaphorical reindeer. Let’s take our annual Let There Be Light(s) tour of some of the best Christmas, er, holiday, lighting displays locally. 


One must …

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Let’s light-en up for the holidays | Mann Overboard


Hitch up the metaphorical reindeer. Let’s take our annual Let There Be Light(s) tour of some of the best Christmas, er, holiday, lighting displays locally. 


One must always start with Michael Ridgway’s mini-Vegas display on MacNeill, just north of 20th, near San Juan. This yearly eye-popper even has its own radio station (89.1) playing holiday music. 

“I start putting lights on the roof in September,” Ridgway says. No candy canes or hot chocolate this year, but nothing locally is more gawk-worthy than this one.

— Our honorary runner-up is at 4231 Lopez, not far from Blue Heron Middle School. Rich colors, intricate blue-themed display. Also, several more good ones are down the block to the north. 

— Hot-Dog Dept.: There are even more lights this year at the colorful display at Highway 20 and Mill Road as you come into town. So many, in fact, that one can almost miss the standby, the hot dog dumping mustard on his head. The dinosaur with holiday lights is a nice addition. This is a smaller version of the grandiose lighting display up US 101 at the casino, but with similar colors. 

— The new Magic of Christmas, block-long display at the fairgrounds is worth a gander. Lots of elves worked on this one and the tall lighted tree.

— Take a colorful drive between 19th and Hastings on Sheridan, featuring several pretty displays.

— Finally, right across the street from the New Life Church out on Hastings, just west of Hancock, is a house perennially decked out in lights. 

— And let’s not forget Debbi Hinton’s annual garish display at her Victorian Clipper barbershop on Kearney, just north of the Co-Op. She got a new roof this year, partly so she could climb up and string lights more easily and safely. 

I know. I’ve missed quite a few. But hey, gas ain’t cheap and I don’t want to be mistaken for a car prowler.


— Speaking of saving gas, don’t bother driving out to Diamond Point Road this year. Instead of thousands of Christmas ornaments along the road, there’s a fraction as many. What a shame. A reader who lives there says there’s been quite a bit of theft, plus “the city won’t let us hang stuff as high.” More’s the pity. I miss the impressive crane installations.

— Lights out at lighting place: The eye-popping display at Vintage Hardware and Lighting, at the second roundabout, is no more. Two years ago, this was the most awesome lighting display in PT. Now, it’s lights out. 

— Granted the Seahawks aren’t having a great season, but I miss the gaudy 12th Man display on Thomas Street, north of Ninth. Let’s hope the Hawks’ playoff chances aren’t as dim as this once-bright display.

— Best holiday wishes this year go to friends/fellow lighting sojourners Sally Holm and Clair O’Neill, and the best to my editor Brian Kelly and The Leader’s intrepid staff. Also: the handy Richard Boyd; PT’s consummate radio pro Fred “Smoky Rivers” Flanzer; hard-working lifeguard wranglers Mike McCoy and Rowen DeLuna at the YMCA Pool. Thanks for keeping the place open as much as possible. 

Speaking of which, season’s best to fellow board members at Jefferson Aquatic Coalition, now working hard to get a new facility; pool supporter and PT City Manager/marathon man John Mauro; affable lifeguard and NFL vet Markus Koch; master mariner and acupuncture guy Piper Dunlap; Scrabble heavy hitter Grace “Triple Word Score” Wright; my fine neighbors up on Dundee Hill, whose collective gift is friendliness and peace and quiet; therapeutic JC nonpareil French professeure Vicky Duenas; arguably the best chef (French and otherwise) in town, Bob Goldberg; therapist Janet Crosier (mahalo); and finally, all you Leader readers, many of whom have sent great, supportive emails this last year. 

— A Christmas joke you can tell kids: Santa is missing a reindeer this year. Why? Comet had to stay home and clean the sink. 

— Finally, this sign on the Army bases where I grew up: “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year — To Authorized Personnel Only.”

(PT Humorist Bill Mann wishes all you PT people Happy Non-Sectarian Season’s Greetings. Contact him at Newsmann9@gmail.com.)