Grotto entry lights up contest

'We're just after their joy'

JENNA LYNCH
Last updated 11:00 24/12/2012
ALL IS BRIGHT: Bill Crook (Santa) and Kathy Wright-St Clair took out the Harrowfield Drive Christmas Lights Competition this year.
BRUCE MERCER

ALL IS BRIGHT: Bill Crook (Santa) and Kathy Wright-St Clair took out the Harrowfield Drive Christmas Lights Competition this year.

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Santa pitching up in a grotto at 17 Harrowfield Drive helped nab Kathy Wright-St Clair and Bill Crook a couple of extra points in this year's Harrowfield Drive Christmas Lights Competition, winning them the contest and narrowly beating last year's winners at number 34.

The couple took out this year's competition for their efforts with Santa in his grotto, giving out lollies to kids, while the rest of the house and garden was blanketed in magical fairy lights. Ms Wright St-Clair said the couple had been stringing lights and festive decorations to their home for six years.

It took a full weekend to hang them, but the looks of joy on the faces of the community made it all worthwhile.

Mr Crook said Santa was a major drawcard for the families, with queues forming to the end of the street for a glimpse of Santa. "It totally blew us away really," Ms Wright-St Clair said. "It's just unbelievable. One night we didn't have him and they were all out here looking for Santa."

And Mr Crook said paying for a picture wasn't an option here.

"We're not after their money, we're just after their joy," he said.

But after all the joy and smiles, the couple reflected on the state of the Christmas display in their area.

They were slightly sad that there seemed to be less entries in the competition than previous years. There had been a lot of houses changing owners in the area, and the tradition of Christmas lights was not catching on as well, they said.

They did however convince their neighbour to pop some lights up and Mr Crook said "he's done ever so good".

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- Waikato Times

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