Spokane Man’s Musical Christmas Light Show: ‘It’s My Full Time Job Now’
by Kelsey Watts, KHQ Local News Anchor/Reporter - bio | email
SPOKANE, Wash – It's an impressive display to say the least; 43,000 lights, 12 control panels, 2 miles of electric cords, and about $10,000 over the years.
But it's Terry Vogel's passion.
He's been putting on the Christmas light show for more than a decade, and every night during the holiday season, there's a long line of cars parked down the street from his home to watch them flicker and flash, off of Hastings & Perry in the Wandermere neighborhood of north Spokane.
What's more impressive?
Vogel manually programs each strand of lights to match each beat of every song he transmits over a radio station that can only be heard within a half mile of his home. He does it note by note, usually in three second chunks, and told KHQ it takes him about 30 hours per song – and he has 12 in a loop on the air right now, and another 19 in the works.
"I'm just happy other people are enjoying it," he said. "That's what I do it for, it's a lot of work, but I enjoy doing it."
Now retired, he says this time of year setting up the display is his full-time job. He begins laying everything out on the lawn and composing around September 1st, and by October, he's working on it 7 hours a day.
"Every beat of the song is to a different light," Vogel said. "I saw a guy on YouTube that made it famous, setting lights to Wizards In Winter, and I thought, ‘I've gotta do that.'"
Once Vogel's work is done, a computer system runs the show, and has the capability of running 240,000 lights - six times what he has up now.
If you haven't been out to see it, it runs 5-11 every night at Perry & Hastings in Wandermere, and will continue to even after Christmas. Vogel says he plans to switch to a New Years Theme through January 1st, including party songs and the classic ‘Auld Lang Syne.'
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