Exploring the Holiday Lights
December 24, 2020
The best way to get into the holiday spirit is to check out some beautiful lights near you. This package has various Christmas light displays to check out. From a Cherry Hill residential light contest to a beautiful display at Johnsons’ farm there are so many wonderful places that will leave you in awe. In addition, we also compiled our recommendations for cheap lights to buy in you need some in a pinch, and some DIY decorations. Enjoy the lights and your holidays!
Cherry Hill Township holds a holiday light contest
One of the best parts of the holidays is getting to spend it with family and friends, and with COVID-19 this year, that means staying home for the holidays for many Cherry Hill families. Drinking hot cacao, decorating Christmas trees, and most importantly outdoor light decor are musts for a hometown holiday spending. Mayor Angulo and the Cherry Hill Township Council hosted their first annual holiday lights contest in Cherry Hill this year, ending on December 18 and winners being announced on January 4.
As COVID-19 has affected Cherry Hills in many ways at this moment in time, with restaurants closing for a while at the beginning of quarantine and schools remaining closed up until the reported January 15 date, many people have been stuck at home with families and trying their best to remain safe. The Cherry Hill Township Council explains that they realize many people will have trouble finding holiday joy due to COVID-19 and were looking to bring the community together in some sort of way this year.
With over 50 holiday light entries and 2,000 website visits, the township council felt that it was a smart choice to hold this year’s first annual holiday lights contest, as it just seemed natural to seek inspiration from Cherry Hill’s Halloween decorating contest held in October earlier this year. Having the knowledge that in-person gatherings are discouraged, the township council decided to continue hosting decorating contests into the holiday season.
“People can feel like they’re apart of a community,” says Erica Farrington. Farrington explains that even though COVID-19 is affecting Cherry Hill negatively right now, the township council wanted to put something together to keep the holiday spirit going throughout the town. Hoping to achieve that, the holiday light contest was made to encourage families to see glimmering community sights in a safe and convenient way.
Matt Baer of the Cherry Hill Township Council agrees with his coworker. “We wanted to bring the community together,” says Baer. Farrington and Baer hope that this event is something that will bring the Cherry Hill community joy and something to look forward to. They also exclaimed how the event is meant to be an interactive get together with family, as people can check out their map with every house entered in the competition on the Cherry Hill Township website and drive to entered houses without getting out of their car.
One contestant of the competition, Jeremy Noll has been decorating with his dad since he was a little kid. Now he is able to continue the tradition of decorating with his son. Noll said, “the best part of decorating is having my son walk around and see everything he is amazed by all the lights and decorations.”
Noll and his family continue to expand their inflatables collection each year. Even though the outside decorations at this house are spectacular there is one indoor decoration close to Noll’s heart. Noll has been adding on to his Peanuts Christmas theme decor since he was a child. He has been adding on to his collection every year since he was a child in the ‘80s.
The fun does not end there Noll and his neighbor have a friendly competition of who has the best setup and the best inflatables. Sadly Noll believes that his neighbor won the match this year.
No matter the winner of the competition, there are so many wonderfully lit houses to check out in your neighborhood and scattered all across Cherry Hill if you are searching for a way to get in the holiday spirit!
Holiday Lights: Part One
Vivian Rong ('23)
Holiday Lights: Part Two
Vivian Rong ('23)
Holiday Lights: Part Three
Isabella Levin ('22)
Johnson’s Corner Farm comes up with new ways to celebrate the holidays
This holiday season is just around the corner. Johnson’s Corner Farm is celebrating the right and safe way. These festivities this year have been adjusted to make sure everyone’s visit to the farm is secure and fun. This season’s event has been modified from different years in the past. To start, the annual tradition at Johnson’s Farm to sit on Santa’s lap has been replaced with a Santa drive-by. This safer alternative will run from November 27 to December 23. Santa will be in a red tractor full of gifts and the driveby will be held every hour. This is a great way to still experience holiday activities at Johnson’s Farm while staying safe in the comfort of your vehicles.
When I was at the farm, I had a great experience with my family. We purchased tickets before coming to the farm. I recommend buying tickets online if you will be visiting the farm this holiday season. Tickets at Johnson’s farm can be preordered on their website or by waiting in line to order. The tickets are sold quickly for each time slot so it would be best to pre order. I was able to pull the tickets up on my phone with the mobile tickets I purchased from the website. My family and I made a reservation to go attend the light show hayride. Reservations at Johnson’s Farm are a new addition they implemented in response to corona protocols to keep everyone safe and organized. With the mobile ticket, I was able to scan a QR barcode to wait in a short line to go on the hayride. There is hand sanitizer everywhere around the farm, and masks must be worn at all times. There is also a capacity limit, so a certain amount of people are allowed at a time. Johnson’s Farm has taken many precautions to make everyone’s experience enjoyable and safe.
The Christmas “Light Show” Hayride is a great socially distanced activity that allows limited people on the hayride at a time. My family and I had a great experience on the hayride. We were with another family within a six-foot radius. The farm only allows two families at a time. Masks are worn at all times during the hayride and your visit to the farm. With the weather changing, I would recommend bundling up since we are transitioning into winter. The hayride was about 20 minutes. Previous to our arrival, the staff decorated the cart with lights and played music for the duration of the ride. During the hayride, we went through the apple orchards, however it was hard to see because of how dark it was.
Bean, an employee at Johnson’s Farm said, “This year what has been different,people are wearing masks, there is hand sanitizer at every register at hayride checks, and we are taking reservations now.”
Bean also says the turnout at the farm has been good, and people are still showing up regardless of the changes.The market at Johnson’s Farm is still open and you can purchase hot chocolate and apple cider donuts there. Staff members fill up the hot chocolate for your convenience. The big farmers market where you can purchase holiday favorites and baked goods is still open. The fire pit is open for roasting smores with your loved ones this holiday season. Lastly, the gingerbread and cookie decorating kit will now be accessible in the market and can be made at home with your loved ones this season.
Although nobody expected the pandemic to last this long, Johnson’s Farm has made modifications to keep customers safe and comfortable while enjoying the holidays with families and friends. Visit Johnson’s Farm for some fun and safe activities this winter at their location on 133 Church Rd, Medford, NJ 08055. You can visit the website https://www.johnsonsfarm.com/.
The Miracle on 13th Street
Last Minute Holiday Decorations
Twinkling holiday lights wrap around trees and bushes. Huge inflatables of famous holiday characters, such as Frosty the Snowman, adorn front yards, and evergreen wreaths embellish front doors. In preparation for the holiday season, many Cherry Hill neighborhoods have been transformed into sparkling winter wonderlands. There may be only a few days left until the much anticipated visit from Santa and his reindeer, but it’s not too late for you to join in on the holiday spirit and fill your home with all things merry and bright.
Firstly, adding some Christmas lights to your front yard is a simple but festive way to decorate for the holidays, such as with Upgraded LED Christmas String Lights from YIQU. Priced at only $19.99, these lights give off a soft warm white glow, and can be used as an outdoor decoration or even to brighten your Christmas tree. The lights can be lit in 8 modes: combination, in waves, sequential, slo-glo, chasing/flash, slow fade, twinkle/flash, and steady on.
Additionally, in honor of the Christmas Star sightings this week, it would be fitting to decorate your home with some shining stars of your own, such as the BHCLIGHT LED Star Lights. With a price of $23.99, this starry string of lights can be strung just about anywhere, indoors or outdoors. Similar to the string lights from YIQU, these LED star lights can also be displayed in 8 modes: combination, in waves, sequential, slo-glo, chasing/flash, slow fade, twinkle/flash, and steady on. Additionally, these lights don’t go out of season, and could be repurposed as a nightlight after the holidays. The BHCLIGHT LED Star Lights can be found here.
In addition to decorating with holiday lights, you can also add some festive sticker decorations to your windows. One option is the Joy Day Christmas Double Side Window Clings. These window clings come with stickers of Santa, a reindeer, and a snowman, along with many snowflake stickers. Although kind of cheesy, these stickers, priced at just $6.99, are nevertheless a fun way to accessorize your windows for the holidays. The Joy Day Christmas Double Side Window Clings can be found here.
Finally, the Light Up Gnomes Christmas Decorations from Simple Art are great last-minute holiday decorations for your home. These small decorative gnomes, which come in a set of three, can be perched on a mantel or next to a Christmas tree. Furthermore, gnomes supposedly bring in good luck and were even once thought to provide protection, so this cute set of holiday gnomes could be exactly what everyone needs as we celebrate the holidays and ring in the New Year! With a price of $17.90, the Light Up Gnomes Christmas Decorations can be found here.
All of these decorations are available on Amazon, and if ordered with Amazon Prime, could be delivered by December 23rd or 24th, just in time for Christmas. However, even if you don’t get to use these decorations this year, at least you’ll be well prepared when the holidays roll around next year!
Courtesy of Pinterest
DIY Holiday Decorations
Waking up to the aroma of sugar cookies baking and gentle snowflakes landing on my windowsill are some of the most magical childhood memories I have. The holiday spirit allows many to experience the whimsical nature of winter break and view twinkling holiday lights and festive ornaments.
Wintry decorations can not only spruce up an undecorated living space, but also bring the holiday cheer that always seems to come with gentle snowfalls.
Although some of my most memorable holiday decorations may come in the form of glittery puzzle pieces and painted macaroni pieces, these snowflake decorations are definitely a close second.
With intricately layered designs that present itself as a stunning, magnified snow crystal, these decorations still retain an elegant quality to hang around any room in its individual form or connected into links. Although some snowflakes may look clunky or are overly complicated with multiple techniques, these only require paper, glue, a stapler and a few simple steps.
The holidays are a time to destress and enjoy the simple things, and this decoration is perfect for a quick dash of wintry spirit.